PERE Staff

Manuel Pastor, Director

Office: JEF 102
Phone: 213.740.5604
E-mail: mpastor@dornsife.usc.edu

Manuel Pastor's bio and CV >>

 

 

 

Staff


(in alphabetical order, by last name)

Vanessa Carter, Senior Data Analyst

Office: JEF 102
Phone: 213.740.9638
E-mail: Vanessa.carter@usc.edu

About Vanessa Carter >>

 

 

Jennifer Ito, Project Manager

Office: JEF 102
Phone: 213.740.0745
E-mail: itojenni@usc.edu

About Jennifer Ito >>

 

Gladys Malibiran, Communications Specialist

Office: JEF 102
Phone: 213.821.5258
E-mail: gladys.malibiran@usc.edu

About Gladys Malibiran >>

 

Rhonda Ortiz, Project Manager

Office: JEF 102
Phone: 213.740.5594
E-mail: rmortiz@usc.edu

About Rhonda Ortiz >>

 

Lauren Portillo, Administrative Assistant

Office:  JEF 102
Phone: 213.740.3643
E-mail: lportill@usc.edu

About Lauren Portillo >>

Jared Sanchez, Data Analyst

Office: JEF 102
Phone: 213.740.9718
E-mail: jpsanche@usc.edu

About Jared Sanchez >>

 

Alejandro Sanchez-Lopez, Data Analyst

Office: JEF 102
Phone: 213.740.7110
Email: sanc874@usc.edu

About Alejandro Sanchez-Lopez >>

 

Justin Scoggins, Data Manager

Office: JEF 102 
Phone: 213.740.5433
E-mail: scogginj@usc.edu

About Justin Scoggins >>

 

Pamela Stephens, Data Analyst

Office: JEF 102
Phone: 213.740.5860
Email: pamela.stephens@usc.edu

About Pamela Stephens >>

Madeline Wander, Data Analyst

Office: JEF 102
Phone: 213.740.9721
E-mail: mwander@dornsife.usc.edu

About Madeline Wander >>

 

 

Jacqueline (Agnello) Wong, Senior Center Administrator

Office: JEF 102
Phone: 213.821.1325
E-mail: jagnello@usc.edu

About Jackie (Agnello) Wong >>

 

 

 

Affiliate Researchers


(in alphabetical order, by last name)

 

Chris Benner

E-mail: ccbenner@ucdavis.edu
Phone: (530) 752-1805

About Chris Benner >>

 

Juan De Lara

Assistant Professor, American Studies & Ethnicity, University of Southern California

Office: KAP 462
E-mail: jdelara@usc.edu 
Phone: (213) 740-1767

About Juan De Lara >>

Martha Matsuoka

Office: Urban & Environmental Policy Institute 201, Occidental College
Email: matsuoka@oxy.edu
Phone: (323) 259-2971

About Martha Matsuoka >>

 

 

Rachel Morello-Frosch

Professor, Environmental Science, Policy, and Management, UC Berkeley

Office: 128B Giannini, UC Berkeley
Email: rmf@berkeley.edu
Office Phone: 510-643-6358
Fax: 510-643-4361

About Rachel Morello-Frosch >>

Rachel Rosner

Research Associate

E-mail:rachrosner@aol.com 
Home Office Phone: 941-351-3082

About Rachel Rosner >>

James Sadd

Professor of Environmental Science, Occidental College

Office: Hameetman Science Center 208, Occidental College
E-mail: jsadd@oxy.edu
Phone: (323) 259-2518 

About James Sadd >>

Veronica Terriquez

Assistant Professor of Sociology, University of Southern California

Office: KAP 352
E-mail: veronica.terriquez@dornsife.usc.edu 
Phone: (213) 740-3533 

About Veronica Terriquez >>

 

 

 

 

Graduate Student Researcher Profiles


(listed alphabetically by last name)

 

Robert Chlala

Summer 2014
Research Assistant

Robert Chlala is a Ph.D. Student in the Department of Sociology at the University of Southern California. Prior to graduate school, he spent over 10 years working in organizing, legal advocacy and educational services with youth and immigrant communities. He also conducted independent research for Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders in Philanthropy, the California Fund for Youth Organizing and the California Endowment on issues affecting young people of color in California. Upon entering graduate school, he worked with Prof. Veronica Terriquez to conduct quantitative analysis tracing the impact punitive discipline has on young men’s educational and economic trajectories.

Robert's current qualitative research sits at the intersection of urban studies, labor, race/migration and social movements, investigating how workers mobilize to transform city policy around policing in Los Angeles.

He is excited to continue engaged research that can make lasting ties between universities and community and labor organizations, and can speak to the everyday concerns of people working hard to build lives of dignity, happiness and equality. Robert is inspired in this work by his family and friends’ struggles and victories, and his practice of Nichiren Buddhism with the Soka Gakkai International, a constant reminder of the vast potential that all life possesses.

Kristie Hernandez

Fall 2014
Research Assistant

Kristie Hernandez is a PhD student in the Department of American Studies and Ethnicity. Prior to arriving at USC, Kristie earned her B.A. at Scripps College in Political Science and International Relations, with concentrations in Race and Social Movements and a minor in Latin American Studies. She was also a Ronald E. McNair Scholar and Harvard Law Union Scholar. For the past eight years she has worked for environmental, educational and labor justice with Communities for a Better Environment, the Labor Community Strategy Center and AFSCME. Kristie has also conducted independent research in Bolivia and Argentina, examining the relationships between the state, international political economy and repression of grassroots social movements’ dissent.

Kristie’s research interests lie at the intersections of critical race theory, carceral studies, education, immigration and ethnomusicology. Through in depth qualitative field work, her current research shows the multilayered process of hyper-criminalization in South L.A. and how Latino youth carve out spaces for affirmation, joy and resistance through the arts. Her work is guided by a deep love for her community and the hope that together we can build bridges and tear down borders—one protest, meeting and dissertation at a time.

In her free time, Kristie winds down with long runs, loud music and lots of vegan kitchen experiments. She’s an avid fan of pumpkin spiced everything and building community through food.

Jessica Medina

Spring 2014 - Fall 2014
Research Assistant

Jessica Medina is completing a dual Master of Planning (Economic Development) and Master of Public Policy (Social Justice) degree at USC Price and holds a BA in Urban Studies from Columbia University. She is also a research assistant with Dr. David Sloane and Dr. LaVonna Lewis; working on an evaluation of federal grants that support community health planning and public policy in underrepresented communities. She is a leader in the student-run organization Partnership for an Equitable Los Angeles (PELA).

As a proud native of Watts, she is a member of the Eastside Riders Bike Club and volunteers with South L.A. Roots and other initiatives focused on improving educational and economic outcomes for South Los Angeles. Prior to starting grad school and joining PERE, Jessica worked in redevelopment, affordable housing, advocacy, and youth engagement. Her research interests are: social and environmental justice in minority and working class communities; regional political fragmentation in California and its impact on statewide social and economic dynamics; and community group (nonprofits, grassroots, special interest, student-led) involvement in the development and implementation of local public policy.

Heddy Nam

Spring 2014 - Fall 2014
Research Assistant

Heddy Nam joined PERE/CSII as a Graduate Student Researcher in January 2014. She is currently a Master of Public Policy candidate at Price School of Public Policy at USC, where she will serve as the Programming Chair for the Asian Pacific Islander Caucus in the 2014-2015 academic year. Before PERE, Heddy worked for seven years in international human rights advocacy - including four years at Amnesty International as well as fieldwork in Cambodia, India and Rwanda - and two years in social justice philanthropy at the Open Society Foundations. A native of Seoul who grew up in New York, her and her family’s experiences as an immigrant in the U.S. shaped her desire to work for social justice.

Her main interest is working with immigrants, people of color, low-income and other traditionally marginalized communities to use civic engagement and organizing to expand equitable access to economic rights such as healthcare, housing, education, or food. Heddy holds a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and Human Rights Studies from Barnard College. Outside of work and school, she loves to cook, hike, and sit on the beach and admire surfers.

 

 

Sheila Nem

Spring 2014 - Fall 2014
Research Assistant

Sheila is completing her Master’s Degree in Urban and Regional Planning at UCLA. She is a proud Long Beach, CA native. She has previously worked for the City of Long Beach, the RAND Corporation, and Shelter Partnership a nonprofit homeless advocacy organization. Sheila’s commitment to social justice is shaped by her parents’ refugee experience. Upon graduation, she hopes to serve low-income communities by putting her research skills and commitment to social justice to work in the fields of grantmaking and advocacy.



Walter Thompson-Hernandez

Fall 2014
Research Assistant

Walter Thompson-Hernandez is recent graduate from Stanford University with a Master’s in Latin American Studies and an emphasis in immigration, racial ideologies, and identity. In the past, Walter’s research has looked at the impacts of interracial mixing between African Americans and Latinos in South LA, and the transmission of racial ideologies between Mexican-origin groups in urban and rural spaces in California. He is a native of Los Angeles, California and is excited to be involved with PERE and CSII as a member of the Latinos in South LA research team before beginning his PhD studies in the fall of 2015.

 

Undergraduate Student Assistant and Intern Profiles


(listed alphabetically by last name)

Paxton Hall

Fall 2014
Office Intern

Paxton is a sophomore at the University of Southern California majoring in Business Administration and minoring in Digital Studies. His professional interests involve global business, finance, and digital media. One day he hopes that he can start a company where these interests can intersect and provide a positive impact on underprivileged communities.

On campus he works as a member of the executive board for ALPFA, an undergraduate finance and accounting club that strives to bring internships, jobs, and other opportunities to students of color at USC interested in the field of finance. As he finishes his remaining years at USC, Paxton hopes to take advantage of the various professional and social opportunities that USC provides, and looks forward to a fulfilling career after graduation.

Julia Kelson

Summer 2014 - Fall 2014
Communications Intern

Julia is PERE/CSII's communications intern supporting various media, writing, publicity and digital projects. She is a senior at USC Annenberg, studying Public Relations and Spanish. Prior to PERE/CSII, Julia worked with Big Hassle Media and H+R PR in LA, and spent a semester studying and working in Bilbao, Spain. She has also written for USC’s International Connection Magazine and KPCC’s Blogdowntown.com, and worked as a Production Manager for Bovard Auditorium at USC. Julia is interested in using storytelling and communications to promote social justice, particularly in relation to environmental and women’s issues. After graduation, she hopes to work in policy or strategic communications.

Chrystal Li

Fall 2014
Graphic Design Intern

Chrystal is a sophomore majoring in Environmental Studies with minors in Communication Design and Environmental Engineering at USC. Her studies aim to explore the interface between science, society, art, and design. Her previous experiences include internships for SURGE Art in China, where she designed style guides, website mockups, and various print projects. She has also developed magazine layouts, flyers, promotional and identity materials. Chrystal describes herself as a free spirited tree hugger with a creative streak and wishes to improve society’s attitude towards environmental issues. She can be found around campus dancing with the OTG Dance Team, innovating with a Design For America team, and participating in the USC Environmental Student Assembly (ESA).

Matthew Norris

Summer 2014 - Fall 2014
Research Assistant

Matthew is a senior at USC studying Mathematics and Economics, with particular interest in econometrics and data science. He is the President of the USC Applied Statistics Club and also works as a programmer in the USC Office of Cultural Relations and University Events.  As a recent transplant to Los Angeles, Matt feels that his position at PERE dovetails his academic goal of getting a Master's in Data Science with his growing love for his new city. He is fascinated with how big data and statistics can be used to promote environmental justice and socioeconomic equity. When he finds a moment or two, Matt can be found running, watching horror movies, or scouring LA for gourmet cookies for his wife, Tiffany.

Erika Petroy

Spring 2014 - Fall 2014
Research Assistant

Erika is a junior studying Environmental Studies with a Statistics minor. As an active student on campus she participates in the Trojan Marching Band, USC Helenes, USC Sports Analytics and she hopes to join the newly formed Environmental Student Assembly this fall.

After declaring a statistics minor she was introduced to programming and manipulating data sets. As a research intern at PERE she works on environmental justice projects, and she plans to continue applying statistics to the environmental field in the future.

 

 

Felicitas Reyes

Spring 2014 - Fall 2014
Office Assistant

Felicitas Reyes is a double major in American Studies and Ethnicity and Communications. She began working for PERE/CSII last November and has helped assist in outreach events and other administrative duties. She is also the undergraduate research assistant for Vice Dean George Sanchez in his office of Diversity and Strategic Initiatives. Felicitas is in her second year at USC and has already immersed herself in multiple organizations that she finds very important. She serves as administrative director of the Roots Foundation, which focuses on creating events that promote mental health and wellness for the women of Skid Row.  In the coming years, she will continue involvement in both the Latino Fellowship and Chicanos for Progressive Education, where she is the executive assistant.  In addition, she will continue to work on a community engagement project known as History in a Box that works to collect items with certain historical themes to be utilized in Boyle Heights’ classrooms. Lastly, Felicitas hopes to start her own research project with undocumented youth at Freedom University in Georgia as an extension of her previous immigrant research in Japan.

  • Program for Environmental and Regional Equity (PERE)
  • 950 W. Jefferson Blvd., JEF 102
  • Los Angeles, CA 90089-1291