Visiting scholars


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Ahmina Maxey

Ahmina Maxey is an organizer, facilitator, connector and advocate. She is committed to ensuring that grassroots leadership and expertise is valued and strengthened as we work for transformative and systemic change. Ahmina has many years of experience in local and national non-profits, helping provide organizing capacity-building, and financial resources to communities of color combating environmental racism. Her work has supported environmental justice (EJ) communities in Michigan, Maryland, California, Connecticut and other states across the country. In Detroit she’s organized for air pollution reduction with groups such as the East Michigan Environmental Action Council, Zero Waste Detroit, and Global Alliance for Incinerator Alternatives. Ahmina lives in southwest Detroit, and in her free time enjoys spending time outdoors, reading, and hanging out with her niece and nephews. She is an active volunteer in Breathe Free Detroit and the Michigan EJ Coalition, and is a 2007 graduate of the University of Michigan, 2011 Green for all Fellow, 2014 recipient of the Sierra Club's Bunyan Bryant Environmental Justice Award, and was included on Grist's 2017 list of 50 emerging green leaders.




Annie Ducmanis Adams

Ducmanis Adams will work with the Tishman Center in 2018 on the symposium, Disaster Relief and Equitable Recovery: Re-Evaluating Aid and Capitalism in an Era of Catastrophic Weather Events. The aim of the symposium is to forge connections between key stakeholders around current disaster preparedness, relief and recovery systems and identify ways to create more inclusive, bottom-up and decentralized approaches to recovery processes and bring together environmental justice communities from New York City, Puerto Rico, and the Gulf Coast with philanthropists, thought leaders, and impact investors from across the nation.

Prior to joining the Tishman Center, Ducmanis Adams was a founding member and project manager for the Gulf Coast Fund for Community Renewal and Ecological Health, a collaborative fund launched in the wake of Hurricane Katrina by funder networks and foundations engaged in critical environmental justice and civic engagement work that put leaders from frontline communities at the heart of the philanthropic response. Ducmanis Adams helped design and lead an innovative grassroots-led grantmaking process that distributed $5,000,000 in grants to over two hundred nonprofit organizations. She also engaged in critical work to build a network of Gulf Coast community leaders, connecting vital grassroots voices to one another, as well as to national organizations, media outlets, federal agencies, and philanthropists focused on work in the region.

For twenty years Ducmanis Adams has focused on work that incorporates environmental protection and sustainability with human rights, including work with national and international NGOs. Prior to the Gulf Coast Fund she worked with the Environmental Grantmakers Association, where she helped to found the Sustainability Funders Working Group. She holds a BA in Environmental Studies from Oberlin College and Masters of Public Administration from Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs, with a concentration in Sustainability and Energy Policy. In 2010 she received a Women in Conservation Award from the National Audubon Society for her work in the Gulf Coast.


Steven King

Steven King will join the Tishman Center to research sustainability and environmental justice focused service-learning curricula, aiming to produce replicable learning outcomes and a framework for a learning community that provides professional development support for educators.

Mr. King is the Founder and Principal of Global Sustainable Solutions (GSS). GSS is a global consulting firm founded on the principles of using a systems thinking approach to the practical application of sustainability. GSS provides strategic planning and operational support to educational institutions, non-profit organizations, private businesses and leaders in developing inclusive and sustainable social justice focused solutions.

Mr. King is also a founding member, former CEO, and School leader of the Barack Obama Green Charter High School, New Jersey’s first charter high school focused on sustainability. The school’s mission is to develop independent critical thinkers and leaders in the area of sustainable development. Prior to founding the Barack Obama Green Charter School, Mr. King served as a researcher and facilitator at the Global Labor Institute at Cornell University’s School of Industrial Labor Relations where his research focused on Green Jobs and the development of a Low Carbon Green Economy. This research lead him to work closely with national and international labor leaders strategizing emerging changes in the global workforce and economy in the use of sustainable practices. He also served as a co-program designer and facilitator for the Black Trade Union Leadership Program which focused on developing the leadership skill of local union leaders.

Steven A. King, holds a Bachelor of Arts from Pace University in Anthropology and a Masters of Arts from the New School University in International Affairs. He has a certificate from the Green Schools Leadership Institute and has presented at several conferences including the 2017 New Jersey Charter School Association where he was the Lead Panel Presenter for Educating for Sustainability.


Barbara Pace, O.B.E.

As a Visiting Scholar to the Tishman Center, Dr. Paca will focus on the theme of Environmental Justice as a Civil Right. Dr. Paca currently serves as Curator to Antigua & Barbuda’s inaugural National Pavilion at Venice Biennale 2018. Dr. Paca will link programs of this exhibit with New School colleagues and students to seminars in Venice during May 21-2 June and September 1-9.

Educated as a landscape architect and art historian (Ph.D. Princeton), Dr. Paca’s interests combine environmental justice and civil rights with the 30-year operation of a women-owned global landscape architectural firm to establish a new aesthetic, promoting the use of native plants, environmental conservation, historic preservation, accessibility, inclusion, and community building.

Dr. Paca is the author of Frank Walter, The Last Universal Man (2017); Ruth Starr Rose: Revelations of African American Life in Maryland and the World (2015); and the Frank Walter Catalogue, (2013), Art Basel, Miami Beach.


Mathy Stanislaus

Stanislaus joins the Tishman Center conducting research to advance circular economy policies and practices. Stanislaus will join the Tishman Center to develop a research agenda that identifies opportunities to align urban infrastructure, manufacturing practices, and state and municipal policies to advance practices that meet the goals of a circular economy.

As a long-term board member at the New York City Environmental Justice Alliance, Mathy Stanislaus assisted community-based organizations addressing environmental justice issues. He is a chemical engineer and environmental lawyer with over 20 years of experience in the private and public sectors. In 2009, President Barack Obama nominated Mr. Stanislaus as Assistant Administrator in EPA’s Office of Land and Emergency Management (OLEM). He was the longest serving person in that position. As Assistant Administrator for OLEM, Mr. Stanislaus led EPA’s programs that revitalize communities through the cleanup and redevelopment of contaminated sites under Superfund, Brownfields, and Resources Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) programs.

Stanislaus led the Agency’s efforts to support community-based actions to address environmental justice under Plan EJ 2014. He advanced President Obama’s Climate Action Plan by integrating series of climate change strategies into his office’s programs.

In addition, he served as chair of the Obama Administration’s Chemical Facility Safety and Security Working Group that led efforts to address the risks to communities – particularly low-income communities and communities of color – from chemical plant accidents where he led the first revisions to chemical plant safety in over two decades. Stanislaus also led the finalization of the Definition of Solid Waste rule and the national rule to safely manage coal ash disposal. He holds a JD from Chicago – Kent College of Law, Illinois Institute of Technology and a Bachelor’s of Engineering in Chemical Engineering from City College of New York. He was born in Sri Lanka and his family immigrated to this country to seek freedom and opportunity.


2016 - 2017 visiting scholars


Joann Kay Chase

Chase will join the Tishman Center during Earth Week at The New School, to curate and moderate one of the highlighted events: Ecology and Sovereignty: Native and Indigenous Perspectives Transcending Boundaries.

Prior to joining the Tishman Center, Chase was Director of the American Indian Environmental Office at the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). She holds a BA from Boston University and a JD from University of New Mexico School of Law. A citizen of the Mandan, Hidatsa, and Arikara nations, Chase’s role at the EPA was managing and directing issues related to the American Indian Environmental Office. She provided national leadership, advice and assistance on Indian affairs throughout the agency and across the federal government.

Chase has been serving as a social justice advocate and innovative strategist committed to building a more inclusive democracy. Following nearly two decades of public policy work in Washington, D.C., she moved to New York City and launched her own consulting company, The Chase Group. She built upon her expertise in Indigenous rights to include efforts to move more philanthropic resources to social justice causes, promote environmental justice, advance efforts to promote and protect Native arts and culture and engage the Native voice in the media justice movement.

Chase has also served in a range of leadership positions from the Executive Director of the National Congress of American Indians, this country’s oldest and largest national Indian membership organization to serving as the Director of the National Network of Grantmakers. She was also selected as the Special Rapporteur for the Indigenous Caucus at the World Conference Against Racism. She has appeared before the Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination as an expert witness on Indigenous issues.


Massimo Bottura

Massimo Bottura, famed Italian restaurateur, joined the Tishman Environment and Design Center during the Spring 2017 semester as a Visiting Scholar. Bottura was the keynote speaker at the Zero Waste Food conference on April 28-29, 2017. Former Tishman Center Affiliated Faculty, Fabio Parasecoli collaborated with the Institute of Culinary Education to organize and curate the Zero Waste Food conference and will also moderate a special panel, Reimagining Sustainable Connections Within Food Chains at the conference.

The Zero Waste Food conference will focus on how we can discover better methods for the way we produce, distribute, consume and dispose of food in the environments where we cook and where we eat. The Conference will bridge the gap between research and practice, and draw upon the perspectives of academia, activism, food business, chefs and food producers in order to synthesize our shared goals and strategies to create a more sustainable food network in the 21st century.

Massimo opened Osteria Francescana in 1995 in his hometown of Modena, Italy. Over the past decade, he has become the leader of the contemporary Italian kitchen. In June 2016, Osteria Francescana was awarded the No. 1 position on The World’s 50 Best Restaurants list. Through his nonprofit, Food for Soul, he aims to empower communities to fight food waste through social inclusion. His goal is to encourage public, private and nonprofit organizations to create and sustain community kitchens around the world. Each project aims to bring a sense of dignity back to the table by promoting the values of art and beauty, encouraging solidarity within local communities and recovering food, places and people. The Refettorio initiatives he launched during the Milano Expo in 2015 and the Rio Olympics in 2016 reflect this approach, offering a relevant template in rethinking food distribution and consumption.


2015 - 2016 visiting scholars


Nicky Sheats, Esq.

Dr. Sheats, Esq., is the Director of the Center for the Urban Environment of the John S. Watson Institute for Public Policy at Thomas Edison State University and has defined the primary mission of the Center as providing support for the environmental justice (EJ) community on both a state and national level. Dr. Sheats holds his BA in Economics from Princeton University, a MA in Public Policy from Harvard University, a JD from Harvard Law School, and a PhD from Harvard University in Earth and Planetary Science.

Dr. Sheats is a founding member of the NJ EJ Alliance, the EJ Leadership Forum on Climate Change and the EJ and Science Initiative. He has been appointed to several federal and state advisory councils including the EPA’s National EJ Advisory Council, the EPA’s Clean Air Act Advisory Committee and the New Jersey Clean Air Council.
Dr. Sheats wrote the white paper Achieving Emissions Reductions for Environmental Justice Communities Through Climate Change Mitigation Policy as a Visiting Scholar at the Tishman Center. His white paper discusses the need for air pollution emissions reductions in environmental justice communities and offers a mechanism to achieve them through climate change mitigation policy. The paper also takes a critical look at these issues in relation to carbon trading and the CPP Rule.


Cecilia Martinez

Dr. Martinez is the Co-Founder and Director of Research Programs at the Center for Earth, Energy and Democracy (CEED). Dr. Martinez has led a variety of projects to address sustainable development at the local and international levels. Her research is focused on the development of energy and environmental strategies that promote equitable and sustainable policies. Dr. Martinez holds a BA from Stanford University and a PhD in Urban Planning from the University of Delaware.

This paper identifies the ways in which existing energy planning strategies are inequitable and illustrates a need for integrating environmental justice communities into renewable energy strategies. By highlighting issues of inequity in energy planning from an economic perspective, this paper articulates the importance for considering energy infrastructure transformation at the community level.

Dr. Martinez wrote the white paper Environmental Justice and The Clean Power Plan: The Case of Energy Efficiency as a Visiting Scholar at the Tishman Center. Her white paper identifies the ways in which existing energy planning strategies are inequitable and illustrates a need for integrating environmental justice communities into renewable energy strategies. By highlighting issues of inequity in energy planning from an economic perspective, this paper articulates the importance for considering energy infrastructure transformation at the community level.