Meet Our Team


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Herbicide-Free UC Founder
Mackenzie Feldman

Mackenzie graduated from UC Berkeley in Spring 2018 with a degree in Society and Environment and a minor in Food Systems. She was the UC Global Food Initiative Student Ambassador for UC Berkeley, and the founder of the Herbicide-Free Cal campaign. Mackenzie has now expanded the campaign into a UC-wide Herbicide-Free campaign with the mission of stopping the use of toxic herbicides across all University of California campuses. Mackenzie is also a Food Sovereignty Research Assistant for the FAO and is writing a plant-based cookbook with her mom that she plans to finish by next year. 


Campus Managers

Interested in being a Campus Manager at your school? Click here to get started!


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UC Berkeley Campus
Bridget
Gustafson

Bridget is a 3rd year undergraduate student at UC Berkeley studying Molecular Environmental Biology. She co-founded Herbicide-Free Cal with Mackenzie, and serves as the Co-Chair of the Junior Board of The Swifty Foundation, which raises funds and awareness for pediatric brain cancer research in celebration of the life of Bridget's twin brother, Michael Gustafson.


UC Berkeley Campus
Star Beltman

Star is a 2nd year undergraduate student at UC Berkeley from Boulder, Colorado studying Environmental Justice and Global Studies. She serves on the board of Berkeley's Environmental Service Fraternity, and assists with field research in Tilden Regional Park on seasonal Newt Migration.


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UC Davis Campus
Alice Beittel

Alice is a senior at the University of California, Davis majoring in Environmental Science and Management with a minor in Geographic Information Systems (GIS). Alice is thrilled to work as a Food and Water Watch Fellow on eliminating the use of herbicides on the UC Davis campus. Her passion for ecology has led her to learn the alarming negative impacts of herbicide use and discover a drive to do something about it. As the UC Davis Environmental Policy and Planning Commission Chair, Alice hopes to empower her UC Davis community to find ways to make sustainability routine through collaborative environmental policy and environmental education. In addition to her work with Herbicide-Free UC Davis, Alice works as a data science undergraduate researcher at the UC Davis Center for Watershed Sciences.


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UCLA Campus
Diana Maria Nguyen

Diana is a 3rd year undergraduate student at UCLA studying Political Science while minoring in Environmental Systems and Society. She serves as the co-leader for a Food Justice & Basic Needs research team as well as co-chair for E3: Ecology, Economy, and Equity's Earth Month Campaign - dedicating series of events during April to educate, advocate, and empower her campus community of various environmental justice issues. Aside from her work, Diana enjoys recreating her mother's traditional Vietnamese recipes with her own plant-based twists.


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UCLA Campus
Elizabeth Tanner

Elizabeth is a second year undergraduate student at UCLA studying Ecology, Behavior, and Evolutionary Biology. She joined Herbicide Free UC as one of the student co-organizers working with Food and Water Watch to continue the Herbicide Free UC campaign at UCLA. Additionally, she is a committee member for the Earth Month and Zero Waste campaigns run by the Ecology, Equity, and Economy (E3) club. Elizabeth is also a member of the Sustainability Action Research (SAR) Program, working on the Zero Waste Team to help achieve UCLA's goal of reaching zero waste by 2020.


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UC Riverside
Alex Armendariz

Alex, better known as Panda, is a fourth-year Liberal Studies Major with a Minor in Native American Studies at UC Riverside. Panda is an intern at the UCR Community Garden and is actively involved in several organizations on campus. As an intern, Panda has become involved in Basic Needs work and is passionate about food sovereignty. He hopes to continue his work by providing fellow students and the local community with organic produce, and make his campus and farming herbicide free.


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UC Riverside
Crystal Brachetti

Crystal is a 5th year student at UCR in Gender Studies and Sustainability Studies. As a student activist, her passion is to work with community members in an action-oriented way to acknowledge the institutional barriers to having a healthy and proactive food systems through use of community gardens. Crystal’s passion to be herbicide free comes from a background of growing fresh organic produce to be able to share with peers and the community. Her hope for this fellowship is to learn more about how to keep organic vegetables accessible to everyone.


Advisors 


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Anna Lappé


Anna Lappé is a national bestselling author and an internationally recognized expert on food systems. The author or co-author of three books and contributing author to a dozen more, Anna is a recipient of the James Beard Foundation Leadership Award and a TIME magazine Eco Who’s Who. Her most recent book is “Diet for a Hot Planet: The Climate Crisis at the End of Your Fork.” In 2011, she founded Real Food Media, a project of Corporate Accountability, which works with grassroots partners nationwide to catalyze creative storytelling about food, farming, and sustainability. With her mother, Frances Moore Lappé, she is also the co-founder of the Small Planet Institute and Small Planet Fund, which has raised and given away more than $1 million since it was founded a decade ago. In addition, Anna works with other philanthropists to foster food system change and leads The Panta Rhea Foundation Food Program. She lives in the San Francisco Bay area.


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James Sanner


James Sanner has actively worked for two decades to bring balance to his environment through ecological stewardship and researching mind body relationships. James has a Masters’ Degree in Philosophy and has pursued graduate studies in social work and education. He was a grounds manager at UC Berkeley for ten years prior to taking on his current role as the facilities manager at the Insight Meditation Society, MA. He has studied with nutritional consultants and master herbalists and soil ecologists, and is working to unify his knowledge through developing a user friendly cost effective series of methods individuals can employ at their homes to easily grow nutrient dense fresh food anywhere. James joined the Agni Institute as a Board Director in 2014, is currently serving as Treasurer, and leads the Agro-Ecology program.


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Dewayne “Lee” Johnson:

Dewayne is a 46-year-old father and husband, and spent several years working as a school groundskeeper for the Benicia Unified School District. He is dying from non-Hodgkin lymphoma, and sued Monsanto for allegedly including cancer-causing chemicals in its weed-killer products Roundup and Ranger Pro and causing his cancer, as he sprayed the products frequently as a groundskeeper. Mr. Johnson won the case and received $250 million in punitive damages and another $39 million in compensation. He is starting a foundation called Fill a Need and wants to dedicate the rest of his life to developing a policy of 0 tolerance for toxic herbicides at schools, playgrounds, parks, and high traffic areas.