About Me

I landed in Indonesia with a surfboard and backpack for an unimaginable odyssey that included journeying to remote jungles of Java, trekking to renowned surf breaks of Bali, sailing to the Gillis and exploring Lombok to its southern-most bays. All along I wondered if these remote communities were affected by my presence as much as I was by theirs. Subsequent sojourns in Central America and North Africa contributed to my questions about the environmental and social impact of tourism.

I explored these questions in a research paper titled, “Bali: the Paradox of Everybody’s Eden,” proposing programs to alleviate the damaging effects of mass tourism. On Bali, tourism was designed, marketed and fueled by corruption as developers stood to make fortunes. However, the legend of profit far exceeded reality. Many resorts built on sacred and arable land are now largely vacant, and government campaigns calling for a return to agriculture have been ineffective. Can local agriculture be packaged to attract the same investors that had been drawn to tourist development?

Globalism, social consciousness, politics and entrepreneurialism have been ever-present elements in my life. When considering my earliest interest in politics, I recall my first civil action demonstration at 6 years old. My aunt had brought me along to picket about reproductive rights. While marching in circles chanting slogans, I decided that the other side made more sense. I asked my aunt a few questions and, when she become upset, I learned that the point was not to debate social issues at home, but to strengthen the voice of my beliefs in the world. I continued to work with my aunt at soup kitchens and participate in other charitable activities while learning the importance of community service. My social awareness continued to develop as I listened to endless hours of radio.

I went to Emerson College as a Mass Communications major, and in my freshman year I worked on-air at two radio stations. By my sophomore year, I was developing my own programs, including the first politically oriented music program in WERS FM ‘s 35 year history. The issues I explored primarily related to human rights. I took great pride in creating a socio-political-post-modern-music program I called “Planet Earth”. The year-long development of this program has been one of my greatest teachers. I began to detect cultural nuances and avidly read the liner notes on all on the field recordings I collected. For example, hearing the Turkish influence in music from the mountainous Xinjiang region of China, I learned of the region’s history and demographics.  To this day, I remain fascinated by the cultural amalgamation heard in the music from Madagascar. I had become a budding ethnomusicologist, but the fascination lay in presenting these historical findings in a way that was both current and relevant. I transformed my specialty program into a daily format, and “Planet Earth” became the new afternoon drive-time program called “Gyroscope”. In a devastating blow, I was forced to leave school suddenly and vowed to return. I believe my legacy remains on-air today.

My heart belonged to community radio. I pitched a program to a startup network in an exciting new medium that I wanted to join, eYada.com. I became Executive Producer of an infotainment program. “Rotten Radio” was based in NYC. My host, John Lydon (a.k.a. Johnny Rotten), was in LA, and my guests and callers were scattered around the globe. I would chat with a caller from Scotland, then phone a clinic in Bhopal to see how they’re doing. (Not so well by the way, the residents still require treatment.) In another story line we attended all of the political party conventions for election year 2000. Our final broadcast was live from the floor of the democratic national convention. The network did not survive the media and technology crash of 2000.

As a female athlete, I saw how beneficial and healing one’s dedication to sports can be for women. Ten years ago, female participation in sports such as surfing and motorcycling was very low. As passions of mine, I created a forum for women to connect locally and globally so they may share their experiences, inspiration and equipment reviews. I began my business, Astral Sports LLC, to form a coalition of woman’s niche sport markets. My website, carvingwomen.org, demonstrates that vision. However, I had made a promise to myself to complete my education. I am so grateful to be a student today.

Through CUNY BA, I am pursuing my degree in International Political Economy and Sustainable Development in the Scholars Program at Brooklyn College. The flexibility these programs offered has given me the freedom to explore urban sustainability in a myriad of applications. This study has included the effects of climate change and exploring adaptive policy. As part of an independent study in the Honors Academy, I developed GIS maps depicting sea level rise datasets for the Town of East Hampton, NY. The purpose was to provide a mapped inventory of existing datasets identifying areas needing further research and at-risk areas in need of disaster mitigating policy development. It was exciting to see this research executed as part of a storm preparedness plan for hurricane Irene.

In my sophomore year, I had the opportunity to study at the East-West Center in Honolulu where I was exposed to a hub of congressionally sponsored research in areas of development, environment and economy. Their publications introduced me to subjects that have influenced the course of my work while gaining a new appreciation for U.S. effort to design effective sustainable policy.

It has been said that the environmental battle will be won or lost in the world’s cities, so last spring I attended the International Honors Program’s “Cities in the 21st Century” semester abroad. We traveled to Delhi, Dakar and Buenos Aires meeting with mayors, developers, union leaders, community cooperatives and rural farmers in a pilgrimage, quite literally, around the world. This was my introduction to the complexities of sustainable development, and special economic zone policy that became the subject of my honors thesis.  I had the opportunity to visit both of my case studies; Gurgaon, India, in January of 2011, and Shenzhen, China, in January of 2012. I have recently presented my work at the National Conference on Undergraduate Research in Utah and at Macaulay Honors College in New York. Evidently, my education has benefitted exponentially by study abroad.

Now that I am graduating, I have the opportunity to apply my professional management experience to green technologies and development solutions. However, I still have questions and remain fascinated by the issues raised in my thesis. I intend to pursue a post-graduate degree and hope to facilitate conscientious business development that is mindful of indigenous cultural and physical environments. I believe in the triple bottom line.


International Political Economy / Sustainable Development
B.A. received June 2012

CUNY Baccalaureate for Unique and Interdisciplinary Studies
Brooklyn College Honors Academy

Advisor: Prof. Tammy Lewis, Dept. of Sociology, Brooklyn College



Awards 2010 – 2012
Thomas W. Smith Academic Fellow
Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship
International Honors Program Scholarship
Study/Travel Opportunities for CUNY Students (STOCS) Award
Furman-Tow Award for Study Abroad
Marge Magner Internship Honoraria
Brooklyn College General Scholarship
J. Robert Loy Memorial Scholarship
Dean’s Certificate for Academic Excellence