I grew up on a diversified dairy goat farm where work with my mom – making hay, pruning fruit trees, butchering chickens, and assisting in midnight goat births – tangibly fostered an appreciation for farmers that drives my work today. During and after college I leased five acres and ran a 60 family vegetable CSA and sold pastured meat to restaurants. As a farmer myself I began organizing other beginning farmers in the Young Farmer Network (YFN) to share resources, knowledge, and a collective policy voice. My advocacy work led me to a job at New Entry Sustainable Farming Project, a non-profit organization where I worked with primarily peri-urban immigrant farmers who faced an even longer list of challenges than the mostly college-educated farmers who made up YFN. I began to really appreciate that as difficult as farming is, for so many I worked with it was an expression of human dignity and belonging.
In the late summer of 2016 I put down my harvest knife, sold my walking tractor, and left the farmland I love.
At ESPM my research examines how rural agricultural communities in the US respond and adapt to the impacts of climate change - from water scarcity and unpredictable weather to changing demographics, policies, markets, and migrations.
Academic teaching experience
Deep Springs College (visiting faculty, spring 2021):
Political Ecology of Agrifood Systems
UC Berkeley (graduate student instructor):
Graduate Pedagogy in Environmental Science (for graduate students, 2018)
Sociology of Agriculture (upper division, 2018)
American and the Global Forest (lower division, 2017)
Thank you to the Berkeley Fellowship, NSF GRFP, Graduate Students in Extension Fellowship, and Annie's Homegrown for graduate research funding.
Ph.D. Environmental Science, Policy, and Management, University of California, Berkeley, expected graduation May 2022
B.A. Geology and Biology, Brown University, 2011
M.S. Environmental Science, Policy and Management, UC Berkeley, 2019
Research Interests / Specializations:
Climate change, adaptation, agriculture, rural livelihoods, land access and tenure, beginning and socially disadvantaged farmers, extension, sociology of agriculture, conservation biology and ecology
Mailing addressDepartment of Environmental Science, Policy, & Management
130 Mulford Hall #3114
Berkeley, CA 94720