PhD, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, 2016
MPP, University of Southern California, Sol Price School of Public Policy, 2012
BA, New York University, 2001
My research lies at the intersection of health policy and health behavior and centers on health behaviors, environmental factors, policies, programs, and interventions related to diet quality, food insecurity, and diet related disease prevention. The overarching goal of my work is to conduct interdisciplinary and innovative research that will contribute to social and policy change, support the creation of health promoting, equitable, and sustainable food systems, help develop and implement effective policies and interventions, and ultimately, improve the public’s health.
My research uses qualitative, quantitative, mixed, and community-based participatory research (CBPR) methods. I am especially interested in the role of home cooking skills and behaviors for diet quality, and have ongoing work focused on understanding and measuring 'food agency' and developing and evaluating food agency/community cooking skills interventions. Other research focuses on contextual, environmental, and policy factors that influence food insecurity and diet quality. Nutrition assistance programs, particularly the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), are another area of research interest. Ongoing research focuses on policies and programs to address food insecurity in the United States and elucidating the immediate and long-term health consequences of food insecurity across the life course. In other work I have focused on away from home food environments including chain restaurants, menu/food labeling, food access, and approaches to limit consumption of sugar sweetened beverages. Other areas of interest include efforts to promote more sustainable food systems, including by reducing meat consumption, and the diet and health implications of processed and ultra-processed foods.
Prior to graduate school, I enjoyed career as a professional chef in fine dining restaurants in New York City and Los Angeles.
Honors and Awards
Gallatin Metropolitan Scholars Award, New York University (1997-2001)
Leo Bronstein Homage Award, New York University (2001)
Dean’s Merit Scholarship, University of Southern California Sol Price School of Public Policy (2010-2012)
Dean’s Certificate of Merit, University of Southern California Sol Price School of Public Policy (2012)
Biller Award for Most Outstanding Practicum Project, University of Southern California Sol Price School of Public Policy (2012)
Center for a Livable Future- Lerner Fellow, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health (2012-2016)
Johnson & Johnson Community Health Care Scholar (2013-2016)
Inducted, Delta Omega Alpha (2016)