Class Year


Current Hometown:

Portland, ME

Job and Employer

Lead Organizer, Environmental Health Strategy Center


Environmental Health is the branch of public health focused on the relationship between human health and the environment (#humanecology).  It’s about root causes of systemic health issues like asthma and cancer, whether you’re looking at the devastating  impact of contaminated drinking water, like we saw recently in Flint, the national increase in breast cancer linked to cumulative toxic chemical exposure, or the elevated rates of cancer we have from exposure to chemicals like arsenic and lead right here in Maine.

As a community organizer, I get to work closely with the people who are directly affected by diseases that are linked to chemical exposure, building their leadership so that real people can make real changes to policies that affect their lives. I spend my time at kitchen tables, and in the State House–building relationships, training leaders, mobilizing constituents, organizing press conferences and call-in-days, managing coalitions, and advocating for policy change at the state and federal level.

Community work & family

I finally got off the waitlist for a community garden this year! We’re growing sunflowers, heirloom tomatoes, cucumbers, and wildflowers. So far I haven’t killed anything yet, which is merciful (shoutout to dear friend and fellow-alum @Katie Perry, who is better at remembering to water things than I am).

Senior project:

“Why Can’t We All Just Get Along?” Unpacking Tensions and Exploring Commonground in the Labor and Environmental Movements


Food and Water Watch, Washington DC

Human ecology in action:

Deeply – the interdisciplinary training I got at COA has been invaluable, both intellectually and professionally. It’s complicated–breaking down silos makes everything more complicated–so there’s an additional layer of rigor in everything we do within that framework, just by necessity. In that way it made me sharper, and infinitely more capable of working with complex science and policy issues in the messy world that we actually live in.

On a practical level, I got to learn how to read primary scientific literature, interpret statistics, dive deep into policy analysis, think critically about identity and power, and become a better writer – all things I use everyday in my organizing work

A COA experience that was particularly significant or memorable:

  • My first year on campus a group of us jumped off the dock everyday through the end of October!
  • A small group of us worked together to develop Share the Harvest, a community food access program that partners with local farms and island food pantries on the premise that fresh, healthy food shouldn’t have to be a luxury.

Considerations for prospective students:

  • We have incredible–and incredibly dedicated–faculty. It’s hard to explain how much that will matter.
  • We have a steep institutional learning curve on diversity and identity politics; there are some really amazing people working hard to make it better, but institutional commitment is uneven and in the meantime low-income students and students of color should know upfront that it’s still a small, relatively homogenous place–at least in terms of the domestic population– and you may have an uphill battle on a campus that has a tendency to play color-blind.
  • Bring wool socks.