I am an environmental anthropologist and interdisciplinary social scientist who partners with communities to support how Indigenous Peoples, Traditional Peoples, and Local Communities’ livelihoods and well-being can be sustained and to identify the pathways that shape just futures. I specialize in collaborative, transdisciplinary projects and creating ethnographic teams. I prioritize decolonial STEAM education as a critical space for engagement.
I joined the Purdue Faculty in 2009 and am an Associate Professor in the Department of Anthropology and Associate Director of the Center for the Environment. I am thrilled to be affiliate faculty in the American Studies, Human Rights, and Latin American and Latino Studies programs and certificates on campus. I also am affiliated with the Native American Educational and Cultural Center, co-founder of the Critical Data Studies Collective, and one of the several founding members of the Building Sustainable Communities Signature Area in the Center for the Environment.
I am committed to feminist, antiracist, and decolonizing scholarship. I recognize that I am a guest on the lands where my institution sits and where Indigenous Peoples have made their home and stewarded their lands for centuries. This space is also a site for healing, trade, and travel for many American Indian and Native American Peoples. I also recognize Purdue University is located near Prophetstown State Park and the Tippecanoe Battlefield, two historic areas where indigenous leaders Tecumseh and Tenskwatawa took an important stand during colonization uniting Native Peoples in the region. To learn more check out the We Shall Remain series, the Are you Planning to do a Land Acknowledgement post, other resources on territorial acknowledgements, and the American Indian College Fund work.
Using a feminist political ecology framework, I map out historical and spatial inequalities and injustices and highlight pathways for self-determination and sovereignty in the context of acute change.
In all of my work I stitch together insights from engaged anthropology and visual anthropology to create collaborative projects. In addition to environmental anthropology, I find kinship with decolonizing approaches to research inquiry alongside insights from cultural geography, Indigenous studies, and Latin American studies.
I have partnered with the Mebêngôkre-Kayapó Peoples, an indigenous community in Brazil, for over fifteen years and am currently working on team-based and community-driven projects around the United States, in Latin America, and throughout the globe on “media sovereignty” and digital landscapes, environmental justice, and community resilience and healing.
I am dedicated to opening and transforming the academy and providing undergraduate and graduate students fruitful and productive experiences to thrive in the multicultural and interconnected world in which they live and work. In order to better support students, I have completed IMPACT training at Purdue.
Feminist Political Ecology | Decolonizing Research and Praxis | Environmental Justice | Indigenous Activism and Rights | Engaged Anthropology | Visual and Digital Anthropology | Critical Data Studies