Spring 2017 Newsletter
Switzer Fellows leading in  environmental justice and equity research
Our spring newsletter is dedicated to showcasing the work of Switzer Fellows as they pursue their careers. We are proud to maintain our connections with Fellows as a Network so that we can learn about a wide range of issues and share best practices about how to link research, science, social equity and action. 

T his issue shares stories of Fellows who focus on environmental justice and equity through their work as a federal research scientist, professors engaged in applied research in this domain, and environmental activists and professionals working through nonprofits and partnerships to address inequities in how environmental harms and benefits are distributed in our society.

The Robert & Patricia Switzer Foundation believes that equity lies at the heart of sustainability. For a just and sustainable world, we must seek solutions that benefit all people as we deepen our understanding of the long history of shifting environmental burdens from one group to another. Academic and professional research has a role to play in shifting policy, and effective policy change must engage communities and leaders from different sectors.  

We have embarked on our own journey to understand how best to support and encourage Fellows from all academic backgrounds, disciplines and social experiences through community, culture, race and ethnicity.  We are learning from our Fellows as they take their academic, personal and professional experience into the world. Join me in celebrating their range of approaches and results!
Fellow Stories
J. Morgan Grove:  Parks and 
Tree Cover in Baltimore
Morgan Grove is a social scientist and Team Leader for the USDA Forest Service's Baltimore Field Station. His work focuses on the long-term dynamics of environmental justice in Baltimore, looking at amenities like parks and tree cover, and disamenities such as polluting industries and flood zones. He and his colleagues seek to answer the questions: Do all Baltimore residents have the same access to city parks? Does the distribution of parks in the city indicate environmental justice or injustice?

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Shrayas Jatkar: Low Carbon Transportation in California

Shrayas Jatkar is currently working for the Coalition for Clean Air in Sacramento where he advocates for various statewide policies that support environmental and climate justice. He was one of the main advocates for Assembly Bill 1550 (AB 1550), which was signed into law in 2016. This law increases the minimum level of investment in climate mitigation projects (e.g., affordable housing near transit, electric vehicle rebates, weatherization, urban forestry) located within and benefiting disadvantaged communities.

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Christina H. Fuller: Air Quality and Communities in Atlanta

Dr. Christina H. Fuller is an assistant professor in the Division of Environmental Health at Georgia State University's School of Public Health where she works in the field of air quality exposure assessment and environmental epidemiology. Some of Fuller's projects grow out of community requests for her scientific expertise.

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Asa Bradman:  Environmental and Occupational Exposure in California

Dr. Asa Bradman is an environmental health scientist and expert in exposure assessment and epidemiology focusing on occupational and environmental exposures to pregnant women and children. He is the Founder/Investigator of the Center for the Health Assessment of Mothers and Children of Salinas (CHAMACOS) Study, the longest running longitudinal birth cohort study of pesticides and other environmental exposures among children in a California farmworker community.

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Martha Matsuoka: Ports and 
Goods Movement in Los Angeles

Dr. Martha Matsuoka is an Associate Professor in the Urban and Environmental Policy Department at Occidental College in Los Angeles, California, where she is also the Executive Director of the Urban & Environmental Policy Institute. She focuses her teaching and research on environmental justice, community-based regionalism, sustainable community development, and social movements. Her current research focuses on policy, planning, organizing, and advocacy related to ports and goods movement.

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Nathan McClintock: Urban Agriculture and Eco-gentrification

Dr. Nathan McClintock is an Associate Professor of Urban Studies and Planning at Portland State University. He is a geographer whose primary focus is on urban agriculture policy and practice. His current research looks at how eco-gentrification can result from investment in green infrastructure and developments, and investments in livability, more broadly.

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Recent Related Grants
Leadership Grant:  Ildi Carlisle-Cummins
Shifting the Course of California Agricultural Policy
Through her position as Director of the new Cal Ag Roots Project at the California Institute of Rural Studies, Ildi Carlisle-Cummins uses history to inform current and future agricultural policy in California. Through personal stories of farm workers, activists and other food movement leaders, Ildi educates the public and policymakers about ways in which we can turn the tide towards a more equitable and sustainable agricultural system in California. In one of the recent podcasts on the Cal Ag Roots Story Hub, Ildi profiles the breakdown of the Bracero program, in which Mexican agricultural workers were sent to the U.S. by the Mexican government during World War II to take over for American farmworkers who had gone to war.  Listen to the podcast on the Cal Ag Roots Story Hub.

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Leadership Grant:  Carolina Prado
Air Quality and Environmental Justice on the U.S./Mexico Border
In May 2017, the Switzer Foundation awarded a grant to the Coalition for Environmental Health, based in National City, California, to hire Carolina Prado as Senior Research Scientist.  Under this grant, Carolina will lead two projects focused on environmental health and justice in the U.S./Mexico border region.  Carolina will develop comprehensive maps of environmental health indicators in Tijuana, which she will share with community activists and decision makers in advance of Tijuana's ratification of its 2018 city environmental plan.  She will also lead an air quality monitoring project in the Barrio Logan neighborhood of San Diego, which is heavily impacted by air pollution from the Port of San Diego, the Naval station, and the I-5 freeway, among other things.  The air quality data will be shared with community activists and decision makers to advocate for changes in San Diego's land use regulations, putting more separation between residential and industrial zones.

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Upcoming Events
2017 New England Fall Fellows' Retreat
September 15-17, 2017
The 2017 New England Fall Retreat will be held at Harvard Forest in Petersham, MA.

2017 California Fall Fellows' Retreat
October 13-15, 2017
The 2017 California Fall Retreat will be held at NatureBridge at the Golden Gate National Recreation Area.

2018 Spring Fellows' Retreat and Policy Communications Training
March 10-12, 2018
Our 2018 Spring Retreat and Policy Communications Training will be held at the Marriott at Metro Center in Washington, DC.
Foundation News
In Memory of Fred Switzer (1922-2017)

Fred Emmet Switzer, brother to Robert Switzer and inspirational leader in the early years of the Robert and Patricia Switzer Foundation, passed away in March 2017Fred was a crucial trustee and visionary for the Robert and Patricia Switzer Foundation. We miss him and will remember the significant contribution he made to shaping the Foundation, its commitment to the Fellowship program and an evolving perspective of leadership in changing times.

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2017 Fellows announced!

In 2017, twenty new Fellows joined the Switzer Fellowship Network of over 600 Fellows located across the country and around the world. We will share more about our new Fellows and the 2018 Fellowship application in our Fall newsletter.

Meet the 2017 Fellows
Switzer completes fossil fuel divestment

As of May 2016, the Switzer Foundation has fully (99.98%) divested from the top 200 fossil fuel companies named in the  Carbon Underground 200  - the public listing of the top 200 companies whose revenues are based on fossil fuel extraction and development. 

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A vibrant community of environmental leaders