Fordham in Community: A Summit on Community Power and Just Climate Actions

A Summit on Community Power and Just Climate Actions: April 19, 2023

Join Fordham in Community as we gather to discuss the collective power of communities in transforming just climate actions. Featuring a panel and keynote speaker, the summit will also connect you with organizations leading environmental and climate justice work so that you come away with a guiding vision and tangible next steps to support this crucial work.


April 19, 2023 | 12 p.m. - 6 p.m. | Walsh Library Lawn | Rose Hill Campus | RSVP Now

441 East Fordham Road, Bronx, NY 10458

Sponsored by Fordham University's Center for Community Engaged Learning and Laudato Si’ Sustainability Council



12:00 pm Registration
12:30 pm Welcome
1:00 pm

Luncheon Panel: Global Migration, Climate Displacement, and Racial Justice

Dr. Epsy Campbell, Chairperson UN Permanent Forum on People of African Descent, 

Annetta Seecharran, Executive Director, Chhaya,

Andrew Rasmussen, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Psychology

2:30 pm

Keynote: Community Power: Environmental and Climate Justice

Elizabeth Yeampierre, Esq, FCRH '80, Executive Director of UPROSE

Co-Chair of Climate Justice Alliance

5:00 pm Reception

Networking Reception & Conversation with Dr. Marc Conte: 
The Role for Economics in Climate Policy and Environmental and Social Justice. 


Rhina Valentin, host of BronxNet’s OPEN Friday

Nicknamed “La Reina del Barrio” Rhina is a native New Yorker of Puerto Rican descent and a television host focused on lifting human-centered stories with an eye towards fostering empathy and community bridge-building. A beloved spokesperson for her community, she is making a mark in New York City’s entertainment industry for her unique approach to advocating for and celebrating diversity.

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Elizabeth Yeampierre, Esq.

Elizabeth Yeampierre is a internationally recognized Puerto Rican attorney and environmental and climate justice leader of African and Indigenous ancestry born and raised in New York City. A national leader in climate justice movement, Elizabeth is the co-chair of the Climate Justice Alliance. She is Executive Director of UPROSE, Brooklyn's oldest Latino community based organization. Her award winning vision for an inter-generational, multi-cultural and community led organization is the driving force behind UPROSE. She is a long-time advocate and trailblazer for community organizing around just, sustainable development, environmental justice and community-led climate adaptation and community.

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Marc N. Conte, Ph.D.

Marc Conte, Ph.D. is an Associate Professor in the Department of Economics and was recently named a Full Professor, effective September 2023. Dr. Conte is an environmental economist who has been working on the environmental impacts of market failure, and market interventions to address these failures, for over 15 years. Dr. Conte’s research on the challenges posed by climate change, specifically related to adapting to natural disasters and the welfare effects of climate-driven biodiversity loss, was cited in the 2023 Economic Report of the President of the United States. Dr. Conte has extensive experience working on community-engaged research projects aiming to improve outcomes for local stakeholders, both internationally (having worked with communities in China, Colombia, and Indonesia) and domestically (specifically in Hawai’i and New York City). Dr Conte received his A.B. from Dartmouth College as a double major in ecology and economics before receiving his Ph.D. from the Bren School of Environmental Science and Management at UC Santa Barbara as an NSF-funded IGERT Fellow. He is a recurring Visiting Associate Professor at the Yale School of the Environment. Prior to joining the faculty at Fordham, he was a post-doctoral research fellow at Stanford University.

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Annetta Seecharran

For two decades, Annetta has championed positive change locally and internationally. Her leadership roles include Director for Policy and Advocacy at United Neighborhood Houses and Executive Director of South Asian Youth Action (SAYA!). A Guyanese immigrant to New York City, Annetta holds an M.A. in International Political Economy and Development from Fordham University, a B.A. in Political Science from Manhattanville College, and executive management certificates from Columbia Business School and Harvard Business School. She serves on the board of the New York Immigration Coalition.

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Andrew Rasmussen, Ph.D.

Andrew Rasmussen, Ph.D., is head of the Culture, Migration, and Community research group; and the Director of the Master’s Program in Applied Psychological Methods. Dr. Rasmussen’s research focuses primarily on the psychosocial needs and assessment of forcedly displaced populations (e.g., refugees, asylum seekers). Although well versed in psychological trauma, Dr. Rasmussen’s more recent work focuses on other forms of stress experienced by forced migrants, how cultural features interact with service delivery to this population, and the wellbeing of low-income immigrant communities in general. Following his doctorate, Dr. Rasmussen worked at Bellevue Hospital’s Program for the Survivors of Torture before coming to Fordham in 2012. In addition to scholarly research, Dr. Rasmussen has been involved in policy development and program evaluation of psychosocial programs serving trauma-affected populations around the world. 

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