Ryan Williams joins the Nutrition Policy Institute at the University of California, Agriculture and Natural Resources on October 2, 2023 as a new project policy analyst. Ryan completed his dietetic internship program at UC San Francisco Health where he developed in-depth knowledge of medical nutrition therapy, assessment, nutrition interventions, and evaluation of nutrition care. Ryan is also experienced in food service, food production, and food service management. His primary interest is in improving the health and well-being of Americans and is interested in projects that broadly can inform nutrition policies in the US. As a dietetic intern, he worked with NPI on a project to assess the barriers to and recommendations for increasing breastfeeding in five counties in California, among those with the lowest breastfeeding rates. Ryan will be working on two National Institutes of Health projects: the Childcare Water project and the Milk-Tot study.
Samantha Sam-Chen joined the Nutrition Policy Institute at the University of California, Agriculture and Natural Resources on June 15, 2023 as a new project policy analyst. She began her work at NPI as a graduate student and received her master's in public health with a concentration in public health nutrition from the UC Berkeley School of Public Health. Her primary research interests include food and nutrition insecurity, evaluating food and nutrition programs, and early childhood nutrition interventions. Through her work, Samantha hopes to contribute to research that will result in policies that eliminate nutrition-related health disparities. She has over a decade of experience working with California school districts, primarily in rural and predominantly Latino communities. At NPI she works on several projects, such as evaluating the California Nutrition Incentive Program and California's Universal Meals Program.
Summer Cortez joined the Nutrition Policy Institute at the University of California, Agriculture and Natural Resources on April 26, 2023 as a project policy analyst. She will serve as the new CalFresh Healthy Living Evaluation Unit manager, to support evaluation of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program - Education in partnership with the California Department of Public Health and local health departments. Summer received a master's degree in community development from UC Davis, where she focused her studies on strategies to enhance regional food system resilience in the face of disasters. Her professional background is in program management, and she has spent the last seven years leading community education projects in land stewardship, nutrition and food literacy.
Ramsha Baig joined the Nutrition Policy Institute on April 6, 2023 as a research data analyst. Ramsha recently received her Master of Public Health in Epidemiology from the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health. She previously worked as a physician in India, where she completed undergraduate studies in Homeopathic Medicine and Surgery from Smt. C.M.P. Homeopathic Medical College and received a Post Graduate Diploma in Emergency Medical Services from Life Supporters Institute of Health Sciences (LIHS) from Mumbai, India. Her past research focused on parental vaccine hesitancy, promoting childhood vaccination, and reducing infectious burden in Africa. Ramsha brings her experience to support NPI's CalFresh Healthy Living Evaluation Unit to evaluate SNAP-Ed programming in partnership with the California Department of Public Health and local health departments.
Erica Martinez Resendiz joined the Nutrition Policy Institute as a project policy analyst on April 3, 2023. Erica, who began her work at NPI as a graduate student, received her master's in public health with a concentration in public health nutrition from the UC Berkeley School of Public Health. She is passionate about working alongside individuals and communities, food security, health education, and early childhood nutrition. Her previous work experience includes helping individuals navigate basic needs community resources, breastfeeding promotion, and nutrition education for participants of the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC) Famers Market Nutrition Program. As a graduate student at NPI, she gained experience conducting telephone and in-person surveys, developing interviews and surveys, collecting plate waste data, administering 24-hour dietary recalls for children, and creating nutrition workshop materials. Erica brings these skills to continue collaborating on NPI projects evaluating the transition to freshly prepared school meals, school meals for all, and farm to corrections.