Kristin Reynolds, Ph.D. 

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Kristin Reynolds is a critical food systems geographer based in New York City. Her scholarship and activism focus on creating socially just food systems in urban and rural spaces, using action research frameworks. She recently published her first book (written with colleague Nevin Cohen) Beyond the Kale: Urban Agriculture and Social Justice Activism in New York City, (2016; University of Georgia Press; see the project blog here). She is currently conducting research on the social justice implications of the evolving landscape of commercial urban agriculture in New York City and Paris. She teaches about urban food systems, social justice, urban agriculture, and environmental policy as a lecturer at both The New School and Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies.

Kristin has worked with many community-based nonprofit organizations and small-scale farms through her research and teaching. These include Brooklyn Grange rooftop farms in Queens and Manhattan;  La Finca del Sur in the South Bronx; EcoStation:NYBK Farmyards, and Hattie Carthan Community Garden in Brooklyn; Harlem Grown in Manhattan; and Soul Fire Farm in upstate New York, where she has served on the founding Board of Directors of Soul Fire Farm Institute since 2015.

She has consulted on curriculum design at several institutions -  including for a first-of-its-kind associate in science degree program in Food Studies at Hostos Community College (a part of the City University of New York and located in the South Bronx) -  and leads participatory evaluation processes for food and environmental organizations.

She holds a Ph.D. in Geography and M.S. in International Agricultural Development from the University of California, Davis, and bachelor’s degrees in International Soil and Crop Sciences and French Language and Literature from Colorado State University. She has lived and worked on numerous farms in the United States and Europe.



Mike Harrington, M.S.

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Mike Harrington graduated from The New School's Milano School of International Affairs, Management and Urban Policy with a M.S. in Environmental Policy and Sustainability Management. He is originally from Chicago and has been involved in the sustainability field in a number of ways over the years. He has worked at a leading environmental non-profit, focusing on organizing around creating equity in the energy efficiency market; has served as the chair of another environmental non-profit, the Delta Institute; and has helped manage an organic food bank garden for people with compromised immune systems. He also served on the associate board of the Green City Market, Chicago’s largest farmer’s market. Mike participated in an AmeriCorps program, Public Allies, for two years, gaining valuable experience and training in community development. He has very strong interests in how environmental policies interact with community and economic development, both domestically and internationally. He obtained his Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign in Psychology, with a specialization in Industrial/Organizational Psychology.

Claudia Urdanivia, M.A.


Claudia was born in Peru and raised in Passaic County, New Jersey. She graduated from Hunter College, CUNY with a Master’s in Anthropology and obtained a Graduate Certificate from Montclair State University in Community Development. Her MA thesis focused on the local impacts of the global market expansion of quinoa on Andean farmers in Peru. Her passion for rural and urban agriculture, agroecology, sustainability, immigrant rights, social justice, and achieving an inclusive local food system has been fundamental to her work as a program manager, educator, and community organizer.  Claudia believes that participatory action research is an essential tool for creating transformative social change by empowering communities.

Past team members

Eben Fenton, graduate research assistant

Michelle Olivero, M.S., graduate research assistant

Michaela Doughty, graduate research assistant

Katherine Nehring, graduate research assistant

Pauline Zaldonis, graduate research assistant

Summer Xiu Gong, intern

Steven McCutcheon-Rubio, graduate research assistant and volunteer