Faculty & Staff

UEPI’s faculty and professional staff represent fields of environmental and public health, housing, urban planning, law, public policy, non-profit management, and more.

Staff work closely with the professors in the UEP academic department, and also collaborate with other college departments including the Center for Community Based Learning and Student Leadership, Involvement and Community Engagement. Staff are housed at two different locations on campus, 1541 and 1882 Campus Road.

Sharon Cech

Sharon Cech

(323) 341-4807
Sharon Cech leads the CA Farm to School, Farm to WIC, and Regional Food Systems programs at UEPI. Her project work revolves around building a more equitable and sustainable food system that both...

J. Mijin Cha

Assistant Professor, Urban and Environmental Policy
(323) 341-4047
Mijin Cha's research focuses on climate change, green economy, and the intersection of race, class, and the environment. Her writing has appeared in several outlets, including The American...
Sylvia Chico

Sylvia Chico

Senior Program Coordinator
(323) 259-2991
Sylvia Chico joined Occidental College in 1992 working in the Facilities Management Department and in 2000, transitioned to UEPI and the UEP department as the senior program coordinator. She...

Christine Chuong

(323) 259-1460
Christina Chuong is the Grants & Finance Manager at UEPI.  Her responsibilities include financial and compliance management of grants.  Other responsibilities include processing invoices and...
Professor Peter Dreier

Peter Dreier

E.P. Clapp Distinguished Professor of Politics; Professor, Urban & Environmental Policy
(323) 259-2913
Peter Dreier has been involved in urban policy as a scholar, government official, reporter, and advocate for over 30 years. He writes widely on American politics and public policy, specializing...
Raquel Galarza

Raquel Galarza

(323) 341-5097
Raquel Galarza is the Health Education Manager for the LA Farm to School Initiative at UEPI. Her work focuses leading nutrition education initiatives in local community sites, as well as...

Robert Gottlieb

(323) 259-2712
Robert Gottlieb is the author and co-author of twelve books and numerous other publications, including Global Cities (MIT Press, 2017), Food Justice (MIT Press, 2013), Reinventing Los Angeles:...
Angelo Logan

Angelo Logan

(323) 259-2759
Angelo Logan is the Moving Forward Network, Policy Director out of UEPI.  Angelo grew up in the City of Commerce and lives in Long Beach CA.  Angelo is the co-founder of East Yard Communities...

Martha Matsuoka

Associate Professor, Urban and Environmental Policy; Interim Director, CCBL
(323) 259-2971
Martha Matsuoka ’83 is the Executive Director of the Urban &  Environmental Policy Institute and an Associate Professor at Occidental College. She focuses her teaching and research on...
rosa romero

Rosa Romero

(323) 341-5090
Rosa Romero is the Farm to Preschool Program Director at the Urban & Environmental Policy Institute (UEPI) at Occidental College. Rosa has been a social justice activist in LA for many years...

Bhavna Shamasunder

Department Chair, Urban & Environmental Policy; Department Co-Chair, Public Health; Steering Committee, Public Health
(323) 341-4695
Bhavna Shamasunder teaches and conducts research on issues related to environmental health and justice.  She is interested in how community-based organizations can leverage science to advance...

Jessica Tovar

(323) 259-1407
Jessica helps manage day to day operations for the Moving Forward Network located at UEPI. The Network links community-based organizations, scientists, environmental, health, research, legal,...
Elena Lopez

Elena Lopez

(323) 341-4808
Elena is the Project Coordinator for the food programs at UEPI. She works to support the food and health initiatives, including nutrition education activities, parent engagement around health at...
Candice Kim

Candice Kim

(213) 718-5785
Candice Kim is the Project Director of the Moving Forward Network located at UEPI. The network seeks to transform the global trade system by supporting the organizing, advocacy, education and...

Seva Rodnyansky

Assistant Professor, Urban and Environmental Policy
(323) 341-4051
Seva Rodnyansky’s research focuses on urban policy related to housing, transportation, residential mobility and neighborhood change. His teaching interests include quantitative data analysis,...