On the shoulders of a long history of social science and public policymaking that urges for the translation of theory into action, I support political decision-making and organizational policy development in complement to my teaching and research. This includes:
- Providing technical input: I speak to stakeholders on the politics of environmental and social inequality, civic engagement, and organizational response. In 2022 I consulted with the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Math on the ethics of public engagement in mineral extraction decision-making for the Commonwealth of Virginia. I have briefed national and international decision-makers on breastfeeding's social, economic, and environmental links as part of the Academy of Breastfeeding Medicine's Ninth Annual Summit at the Pew Charitable Trusts in Washington, D.C, and to infant nutrition leaders on the topic of environmental racism at the National Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) Association's 2020 Nutrition Education and Breastfeeding Promotion Conference. From 2017-2019, I served on the International Lactation Consultant Association's Equity Committee, where I contributed to advancements in professional training requirements for this global professional Association, as well as equity dialogues and analysis engaging their wider membership.
- Conducting policy analysis: I provide programmatic consulting for both small and larger projects. Currently, I am supporting a local organization, Grasse River Heritage, in Canton, NY, on a project to more meaningfully represent the eco-cultural history, and Indigenous perspectives specifically, on what are today parklands designated for public recreational use. Two students at St. Lawrence University are serving as research assistants in this work. In 2019, I completed my position as Policy Fellow with Farm to Institution New England (FINE), where I helped launch a research collaboration with Vermont Law School in conjunction with the U.S. Department of Agriculture. We produced a comprehensive policy analysis and several briefs addressing New England states' demand-side local food procurement policy initiatives and their regional impact. I am also co-author on the Detroit case study for the International Panel of Experts on Sustainable Food Systems' commissioned What Makes Urban Food Policy Happen report.
- Addressing gaps in community participation in decision-making: Understanding that authentic access to decision-making is complex, I aim to work with communities to uplift their voices and obtain greater recognition and resources within hegemonic institutions. In this aim, I have worked with members of the Navajo Nation Breastfeeding Coalition to develop a breastfeeding peer counselor support statement distributed to key stakeholders ahead of the vote on the (now adopted) Resolution on breastfeeding of the NAABIK’ ÍYÁTI’ Standing Committee of the 23rd Navajo Nation Council, and towards the sharing of institutional supports to assist with several of the Coalition's celebrations, trainings, and also their Coronavirus pandemic response. In Milwaukee, I collaborated with members of the African American Breastfeeding Network and the Coalition on Lead Elimination in developing policy recommendations to strengthen measures mitigating harm in the relationship between environmental contamination and community health outcomes, including in work directly with Milwaukee's Commissioner of Public Health.