Dr. Dalla received a B.A. in Psychology with a second major in Cultural Anthropology from the University of Colorado-Boulder in May, 1991. In 1993 she earned an M.S. and in 1996 a Ph.D. in Family Studies at the University of Arizona. Dr. Dalla is currently Associate Professor of Family and Consumer Sciences, College of Human Resources and Family Sciences, University of Nebraska, Omaha Campus. She received the 2001-2002 Distinguished Teaching Award for the College. She has recently been nominated for additional awards relative to her outstanding teaching and student mentoring. While a graduate student at the University of Arizona, Rochelle was employed as both a Teaching Assistant/Associate and Research Assistant/Associate for at least half-time every semester.
Dr. Dalla worked closely with Dr. Wendy Gamble, whom she cites as a true mentor in every sense of the word. While at the University of Arizona Rochelle researched teenage parenting on the Navajo Reservation examining differences in perceptions and beliefs, and differences tied to roles and generation. Personal interviews conducted with impoverished, reservation-residing teenage parenting Navajo afforded her the ability to recognize how significant it is to maintain connections to the real world and to resist Ivory Tower research. Dr. Dalla is actively involved in three on-going research projects; (1) street-level prostitution; (2) immigration in rural meat-packing communities; and (3) substance use and psychiatric co-morbidity among Latino immigrants in rural communities. Dr. Dalla has developed a special interest in marginalized women in general, not only indigent Native Americans. Her advocacy is channeled through her research - through attempting to neutralize (if not eliminate) stereotypes and erroneous assumptions about marginalized groups. She hopes to provide an arena that allows the women to speak and be heard.