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2013 Urban Greenspace Accessibility Research at Georgia State University, 2010 Modeling Upper Tropospheric Ozone at the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR), 2019 Poor People's Campaign Rally in Baton Rouge, and 2012 US EPA Region 4 Environmental Justice Conference
I have a truly interdisciplinary academic and professional background that informs the way I approach "wicked" environmental problems. As a feminist scholar-activist, my work builds bridges between academic, activist, philanthropic, artist, and policy communities. I likewise promote civic engagement, experiment with service-learning, and communicate across epistemic divides.
I studied environmental science for four years as an undergraduate at Spelman College before adding sociology and anthropology to my course curriculum during my fifth year. This means that I have an extensive background in both quantitative and qualitative methods, as well as geospatial technologies. As an environmental science major, I a) modeled upper tropospheric ozone using supercomputers at the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) under the SOARS program, b) conducted participatory action research (PAR) and ethnobotanical research with Louisiana Indigenous communities, c) conducted ethnographic and survey research with Black farmers and vegetarians, d) used a community geography framework to assess greenspace accessibility at the Beecher Hills Lionel Hampton Nature Preserve, and e) used GIS to study erosion potential at Providence Canyon Park in Lumpkin, Georgia. I also graduated with an unofficial food justice minor and paved the way for the current food studies minor at Spelman College.
I likewise explored civic engagement and volunteerism as president of Spelman's Environmental Task Force, secretary and treasurer of the Eta Zeta chapter of Gamma Sigma Sigma National Service Sorority Inc., and student member of the Sustainable Spelman Committee. I deepened my knowledge of environmental issues as a volunteer for the West Atlanta Watershed Alliance (WAWA), the National Wildlife Federation and USDA Forest Service, the Georgia Conservancy, Keeping it Wild, the Hog Hummock Geechee Community on Sapelo Island, Trees Atlanta, Truly Living Well Center for Urban Agriculture, the Morehouse Bonner Office of Community Service, and the Raising Expectations Tutoring and Mentoring Program in Southwest Atlanta.
I also graduated with a Spanish minor at Spelman after studying abroad in Spain, the Dominican Republic, Italy, and South Africa. In South Africa, I studied physical hydrology, agrometeorology and environmental biophysics, community ecology, and an interdisciplinary geomorphology, climatology, and biogeography seminar at the University of KwaZulu-Natal. Finally, I focused on campus recycling efforts as an intern for the Spelman College Facilities Management & Services and cultivated relationships with Black farmers in the USA and farmers of color internationally as an intern for the Southeastern African American Farmers Organic Network (SAAFON) and Slow Food International. In fact, I started the first HBCU Chapter of Slow Food at Spelman College in 2013.
As a graduate student at the University of California, Berkeley, I served as a mentor on an urban ethnobotany research project working in gardens tended by refugee communities. I also worked in philanthropy as an intern for the Environmental Grantmakers Association (EGA), worked in mining and coal policy as an intern for the Office of Surface Mining, Reclamation and Enforcement (OSMRE) at the US Department of the Interior, and worked in environmental education as the project manager for the Deep South Center for Environmental Justice (DSCEJ) Gulf Equity Water Corps Project. This 2019 project allowed the DSCEJ to develop youth leadership around sea level rise, flooding, and stormwater management. Lastly, I formerly developed resources for the Women4Climate Mentorship Program sponsored by the C40 Cities Initiative and the New Orleans Mayor's Office of Resilience & Sustainability.
My doctoral and current research explores feminist environmentalisms amongst Black and Indigenous women in Gulf Coast Louisiana using feminist activist methodologies including ecowomanist autoethnography. I am interested in everyday strategies of resistance and emergent kinship networks in post-apocalyptic toxic landscapes. As a result of my community based research and commitment to social change, I am also a proud co-founding member of the Feminist Agenda for a Green New Deal. My future scholarship will use tools from Black feminist digital humanities to create and curate an Ecowomanist and Afrofuturist Digital Archive and Social Lab.
2019 Community Conversation on Climate Change at Global Green Center in Lower 9th Ward, New Orleans (pictured left to right: Ms. Marlene Pete (Sankofa), Ms. Cynthia Guillemet (Community Researcher & Lower Nine Homeowner Association), Ms. Kim Chapital (Deep South Center for Environmental Justice), Ms. Angela Chalk (Water Wise Gulf South & Healthy Community Services), Ms. Marilyn Amar (Gordon Plaza Resident and Community Activist) and Ms. Frances Roberts-Gregory (Ecowomanist Ethnographer))