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Urban Environmental Justice in a Time of Climate Change



November 7 – Alder Auditorium

9:30am: Coffee and registration
10:00am: Opening: Thaisa Way, Urban@UW; Lisa Graumlich, Dean, College of the Environment
10:30: Tom Goldtooth, Executive Director, Indigenous Environmental Network
11:15: Panel Discussion: Urban Environmental Justice as a Community

  • Jill Mangaliman, Executive Director, Got Green; UW Department of Geography Alum
  • Kim Powe, Climate Policy Lead, Puget Sound Sage
  • Tom Goldtooth, Executive Director, Indigenous Environmental Network
  • Moderated by Aiko Schaefer, UW School of Social Work; Front and Centered; UW School of Social Work Alum

12:30pm: Lunch
1:30: Overview of climate impacts in the Pacific Northwest – Amy Snover, Director, UW Climate Impacts Group; UW Department of Chemistry Alum
1:40: Julie Sze, University of California Davis
2:30: Panel Discussion: Climate Science and Environmental Justice

  • Julie Sze, University of California Davis, American Studies Program
  • Josh Lawler, UW School of Environmental and Forest Sciences
  • Mary Ruckelshaus, Stanford University Woods Institute for the Environment; Managing Director, Natural Capital Project; UW School of Aquatic and Fishery Sciences Alum
  • Peter Kahn, UW School of Environmental and Forest Sciences
  • Moderated by Anne T. Wessells, UW Urban Studies Program

3:00: Break
3:15: Group Discussion
4:30: Taking Stock/Close

7:30: Jacqueline Patterson, “Upholding the Beloved Community: Advancing a Just and Equitable Transition to a Low-Carbon World” – Kane Hall (RSVP required)

November 8 – Ethnic Cultural Center

9:30am: Coffee and registration
10:00am: Thaisa Way, opening and discussion of UW’s population health initiative
10:10Rachel Morrell-Frosch, University of California Berkeley, College of Natural Resources
10:55: Panel Discussion: Urban Population Health and Climate Change

  • Jeremy Hess, UW Global Health Division of Emergency Medicine
  • Anjum Hajat, UW Department of Epidemiology
  • Rachel Morrello-Frosch, University of California Berkeley, College of Natural Resources
  • Moderated by Linda Nash, UW Department of History; UW Department of History Alum and Jared Baeten, UW Department of Global Health; UW School of Medicine Alum

12:15pm: Lunch
1:15: Mia White, New School for Social Research
2:05: Panel Discussion: Teaching and Learning Urban Environmental Justice

3:00: Break
3:20: Group Discussion
4:00: Moving Forward: Breakout Sessions
4:30: Synthesis/Close

Guest Speakers:

Jacqueline Patterson, NAACP, Walker Ames Lecturer (in Partnership with the UW Graduate School)

Jacqueline Patterson is the Director of the NAACP Environmental and Climate Justice Program. Since 2007 Patterson has served as coordinator & co-founder of Women of Color United. Jacqui Patterson has worked as a researcher, program manager, coordinator, advocate and activist working on women‘s rights, violence against women, HIV&AIDS, racial justice, economic justice, and environmental and climate justice. Patterson served as a Senior Women’s Rights Policy Analyst for ActionAid where she integrated a women’s rights lens for the issues of food rights, macroeconomics, and climate change as well as the intersection of violence against women and HIV&AIDS. Previously, she served as Assistant Vice-President of HIV/AIDS Programs for IMA World Health providing management and technical assistance to medical facilities and programs in 23 countries in Africa and the Caribbean. Patterson served as the Outreach Project Associate for the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, and Research Coordinator for Johns Hopkins University. She also served as a U.S. Peace Corps Volunteer in Jamaica, West Indies.

Tom Goldtooth, Executive Director, Indigenous Environmental Network

Tom is the executive director of the Indigenous Environmental Network based in Minnesota, United States. He has been awarded with recognition of his achievements throughout the past 37 years as an activist for social change within the Indigenous and environmental and climate justice movements. From the strength of his community organizing and leadership experience he has brought the local issues of environmental, economic, energy, climate, water and food justice and the rights of Indigenous peoples to the national and international levels. He co-produced an award winning documentary film, Drumbeat for Mother Earth, which addresses the affects of bio-accumulative chemicals within the traditional food-web of Indigenous peoples. Tom has been linking the Rights of Nature movement with Indigenous traditional knowledge and the territorial integrity of Mother Earth. Tom is a recipient of the 2015 Gandhi Award 2015.

Rachel Morrello-Frosch, University of California Berkeley

Dr. Morrello-Frosch’s research focuses on environmental health and environmental justice. She is particularly interested in addressing the double jeopardy faced by communities of color and the poor who experience high exposures to environmental hazards and who are more vulnerable to the toxic effects of pollution due to poverty, malnutrition, discrimination, and underlying health conditions. How do matters of race and class affect distributions of health risks in the United States? What are the causes and consequences of environmental disparities and health inequalities? How can research create “upstream” opportunities for intervention and prevention? Dr. Morrello-Frosch is also interested in evaluating the influence of community participation on environmental health research, science, regulation, and policy-making, as well as in developing methods to foster community-based participatory research.

Julie Sze, University of California Davis

Julie Sze is a Professor and the Chair of American Studies at UC Davis. She is also the founding director of the Environmental Justice Project for UC Davis’ John Muir Institute for the Environment. Sze’s research investigates environmental justice and environmental inequality; culture and environment; race, gender and power; and urban/community health and activism and has been funded by the Ford Foundation, the American Studies Association and the UC Humanities Research Institute. Sze’s book, Noxious New York: The Racial Politics of Urban Health and Environmental Justice, won the 2008 John Hope Franklin Publication Prize, awarded annually to the best published book in American Studies. Her second book is calledFantasy Islands: Chinese Dreams and Ecological Fears in an Age of Climate Crisis (2015). She has authored and co-authored 39 peer-reviewed articles and book chapters on a wide range of topics and has given talks in China, Abu Dhabi, Canada, Germany, France and Italy. Sze has been interviewed widely in print and on the radio.

Mia White, New School for Social Research

Mia White is an assistant professor who has recently joined the Environmental Studies faculty at The New School for Social Research,with a joint appointment in the Milano School for Urban Policy and Management. Mia’s pedagogical, research and theoretical pursuits focus on the examination of race as a spatial formation. She situates herself in three “disciplinary” camps: urban sociology (environment and institutions), urban politics (governance and bureaucracy), and critical urban theory (power and space). Mia has strong interests in democratic practice, ethical inquiry, the carceral state, and African American history. Her current projects focus on the relationship between race and property, and what that means for ecological and social sustainability. Ongoing interests include research on the relationship between surveillance and gentrification, as well as the coproduction of racial and ecological imaginaries. Her approach tends towards historical institutionalism, institutional ethnography and mixed qualitative methods.


Thaisa Way, Urban@UW
Amy Snover, Climate Impacts Group, UW
Hedwig Lee, Sociology, UW
Anne Wessells, Urban Studies, UW-Tacoma
Jared Baeten, Global Health
Christian Anderson, Interdiciplinary Arts and Sciences, UW-Bothell
Susan Kemp, Social Work, UW

Session Leaders:

Joe Casola, Climate Impacts group, UW
Kim England, Geography, UW
Linda Nash, History, UW
Kristi Ebi, Global Health, UW
Tom DeLuca, Environmental and Forest Sciences, UW
Rich Watts, French, UW
Devon Pena, American Ethnic Studies, UW
Aiko Schaefer, Social Work, UW

A complete schedule will be available soon, so check back or sign up for our mailing list. If you are planning to attend please register here, as space is limited.