API Heritage Month banner 2021

Stuart Sumida is a world-renowned paleontologist, award-winning professor and sixth-degree black belt martial artist.

And on top of all that, he’s a sought-after animation film consultant with a specialty in anatomy. He worked on Pixar’s “Soul,” the winner of both the 2021 Academy Award and the 2021 Golden Globe for Best Animated Film.

Sumida, who teaches in the CSUSB College of Natural Sciences’ Department of Biological Sciences, used his expertise in anatomy to ensure an accurate representation of a cat named Mr. Mittens.

Sumida has served as a consultant on more than 70 films, television shows and video games since joining CSUSB. He served as a consultant to two films that won the Academy Award for Best Animated Film – “Ratatouille” in 2008 and “Zootopia” in 2017.

Sumida lectures on a number of subjects that include human anatomy and physiology, evolution and topics in zoology. He is the author of three books and more than 70 journal articles – many with students, introducing them to the process of research and publication in refereed journals.

He is just as comfortable outside the classroom or lecture hall, be it in paleontology digs in Europe and the United States or reconstructing fossilized dinosaur skeletons. He is recognized internationally for his research on biological transformations that took place as back-boned animals adapted to life on land and as co-discoverer of the earliest bipedal animal to ever run on two legs, predating dinosaurian bipeds by over 60 million years.

CSUSB is celebrating Asian Pacific Islander Heritage Month in April and May with a number of virtual events honoring the accomplishments, contributions and culture of Asian and Pacific Islander communities under the theme “Not Your Model Minority, Creating Waves of Change.”

Nationally, Asian Pacific Islander Heritage Month is celebrated in May, but since CSUSB has a short month in May with finals and commencement, the university started its celebration in April.