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Our Team

Affiliates

Lillian Reese
Law Clerk

Lillian joined the P.E.E.R. Group as a Spring 2022 EJIP legal intern focusing on the People Against the Surveillance of Children and Overpolicing (P.A.S.C.O.) Coalition. The coalition works to combat--and end--the Pasco Sheriff Department’s predictive policing program, which uses student data provided by the Pasco County School District to create lists of people who the department believe to be potential offenders. Children become targets and are treated like criminals regardless of their criminal history. She is glad her knowledge and skills allow her to assist the coalition in preventing the most vulnerable members of our society from being victimized. Lillian returned to the P.E.E.R. Group this summer as a law clerk.

Sabrina Payoute, MS
Research Affiliate

Sabrina's main interests are in Medicine, Biostatistics, and Research. She studied Mathematical Sciences and Biology at Florida Atlantic University, where she focused on the development of epidemiological models of infectious diseases, like Zika. She continued her education at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine (UMSM) and holds a Master of Science degree in Biostatistics. Currently, she is researching topics in medical education, epidemiology, and public health. She spends her free time volunteering with community initiatives such as the UMSM DOCS health fair and CHAMP (community-based HIV Awareness for Minority Populations). She inspires to lead a life dedicated to improving health and the lives of community members, especially the underserved and underrepresented.





Environmental Justice Intern Program

Summer 2022

Adeena Ademu-John

Just Transition Legal Intern

Adeena Ademu-John attends the University of Miami, triple-majoring in Marine and Geological Sciences along with Ecosystem Science and Policy. She is a part of the UM Foote Fellows Honor Program and plans to pursue a career within the domain of Environmental Sustainability, Policy, and Practice. In her free time, she likes to rollerblade, rock climb, and help with beach cleanups through the University of Miami`s Chapter of the Surfrider Foundation.

Laura Castellon

Energy Justice Education Legal Intern

Laura Castellon was born in Cuba but grew up in the Miami community. She is currently enrolled at School for Advanced Studies North where she is a full-time dual enrollment student, getting an AA degree at Miami-Dade College while getting her high school diploma. She is planning on double majoring in Political Science and Psychology. She truly wants to make a change to better her community and thinks the best way to do it is through a legal career. She aspires to be a civil rights lawyer to be able to fight for people’s rights. P.E.E.R. Group's mission to work alongside marginalized communities aligns with Castellon's passions and she is excited and grateful to be a part of it.

Josephine Gray

Sustainable Community Development Legal Intern

Josephine Gray is a senior at the University of Miami majoring in international studies and minoring in mathematics and ecosystem science and policy with a pre-law track. She hopes to continue her education through law school, eventually pursuing a career in international environmental law. With P.E.E.R., she plans to work with the Miami community, helping create a cleaner and more sustainable environment.

Skylar Kamen

Sustainable Community Development
Research Intern

Skylar is entering her third year at Northeastern University studying International Affairs and Human Services. She is finishing her first co-op with Boston Cares, where she worked with over 200 different non-profit and school partners to service their network of over 20,000 volunteers for different service projects in New England. Outside of her co-op and classes Skylar is a part of the Student Philanthropy council where she fundraises and directs funds within Northeastern programming. She is also a writer for Woof Magazine, a literary arts magazine run by students. Skylar will be working in the Sustainable Development Campaign in furthering overall community sustainability in the region, as it addresses the Tapiztree Biophilia Guide.

Emma Sheridan

Summer Law Clerk

Emma Sheridan is a rising 2L at the University of Miami School of Law. She joins us this summer as a HOPE Summer Public Interest Fellow. Emma graduated magna cum laude from the University of North Florida in 2021 with dual degrees, a B.S. in Communication and a B.A. in Interdisciplinary Studies Environmental Studies. At Miami Law, Emma started Rooted-In-Justice, a student-led gardening group that is working to bring students fresh fruit and vegetables straight from the campus garden. Emma was drawn to P.E.E.R. by their dedication to promoting policies focused on environmental justice.

Alexander Zastera

Climate Crusader

Alexander Zastera works with P.E.E.R. Group on creating radical resources to educate and activate youth in the greater Miami area towards energy and climate justice. He joins us this summer to work with students in the Environmental Justice Intern Program.





Spring 2022

Matt Ellis (he/they)

Litigate to Empower

​​Matt Ellis-Ramirez is a first-generation B.S. Candidate, working towards a dual degree in Ecosystem Science & Marine Affairs, minoring in Public Health at the University of Miami. Matt is passionate about the junction of science and law, especially in addressing the intersectionality of the effects of the climate crisis on historically disinvested communities. Matt has worked on language justice, LGBTQ advocacy, park equity, and social justice campaigns, all inextricably connected to environmental justice, and is excited to bring those learning into his work here in Miami as a P.E.E.R. Group Intern.

Anna Frey

Sustainable Community Development

Anna Frey is a Sophomore at the University of Miami double majoring in Marine Affairs and Ecosystem Science and Policy. Originally from Baltimore Maryland, she is passionate about preserving natural systems and the environment, and is pursuing studies at the intersection of science and policy to develop equitable solutions to environmental issues. In Miami, she serves as the Chief Environmental Officer of a local scuba diving shop where I develop shop sustainability initiatives, encourage environmental stewardship among the diving community, and get to enjoy Florida’s beautiful reefs and marine environments.

Nick Nocita

Equitable Weatherization Team

Nick is a sophomore at Harvard University studying Environmental Science and Public Policy with a minor in Ethnicity, Migration, and Rights. He works on Equitable Weatherization, the Displacement Vulnerability Mitigation Tool, and leads a sexual assault prevention project focusing on interracial violence perpetrated against Native Americans. He is passionate about social justice and equity for indigenous communities, energy system policy, and technological co-production. Outside of P.E.E.R. Group, Nick is a member of the Harvard Men’s Swim and Dive team and leads first-year backpacking trips throughout New England.


Lillian Reese

P.A.S.C.O. Coalition

Lillian joined the P.E.E.R. Group as a volunteer law clerk focusing on the People Against the Surveillance of Children and Overpolicing (P.A.S.C.O.) Coalition. The coalition works to combat--and end--the Pasco Sheriff Department’s predictive policing program, which uses student data provided by the Pasco County School District to create lists of people who the department believe to be potential offenders. Children become targets and are treated like criminals regardless of their criminal history. She is glad her knowledge and skills allow her to assist the coalition in preventing the most vulnerable members of our society from being victimized.

Fall 2021

Sophie Walenta

Just Transition Team

Sophie is a student at the University of Miami pursuing a dual degree in Ecosystem Science and Policy and Marine Affairs with a minor in Geospatial Technology. In addition to her academic studies, she is also an intern with the P.E.E.R. Group and research assistant for the Environmental Justice Clinic (EJC) at the University of Miami School of Law. She has a desire to investigate, formulate, and present posing research in hopes of shifting power back to marginalized communities in South Florida using a combination of policy work and geospatial mapping.

Scott Pollowitz

Sustainable Development Team

Scott is a second-year undergraduate student at the University of Miami studying Ecosystem Science & Policy and Psychology. As a Miami resident, Scott has a passion for combating the environmental issues that are disproportionately affecting vulnerable communities. Scott maintains a 4.0 GPA, is on the President’s Honor Roll, and was named a National Merit Scholar. In high school, Scott worked with his peer to inform them about the importance of Florida’s marine ecosystems. In his free time, Scott enjoys snorkeling and paddle-boarding in Florida’s beautiful waters.





Summer 2021

Emi Abe-Teh
Just Transition Team
Emi is a rising junior at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill double majoring in sociology and public policy and minoring in education. She is passionate about ensuring an equitable transition to clean energy that ensures the welfare of marginalized peoples most affected by climate change.

Joseph Mogul
Equitable Weatherization Team
Joseph is an undergraduate Junior at Macalester College with a major in Environmental Studies and minor in Economics. He is currently working with the P.E.E.R. Group, advocating for underserved communities and the environment in Miami. Joseph hopes to continue his work in the environmental/social justice world, specifically focusing on solutions to economic disparities perpetuated by structures in contemporary institutions.  
Catherine Sautter
Just Transition Team
Catie is graduating from the University of Miami this Fall 2021 with majors in Creative Writing, History, and a minor in Ecosystem Science and Policy with the hopes of attending law school. She is passionate about environmental policy and advocacy. Previously she has worked on the Break Free from Plastic campaigns and continues her work in environmental justice with the P.E.E.R. Group. 
Rajvi Shah
Housing Justice Team
Rajvi is an undergraduate at the University of Miami with a major in Geography and Sustainable Development with focuses in Smart Cities and Geospatial Technology. She is passionate about designing sustainable cities for the welfare of all people, starting with efficient transportation. She is currently working with the P.E.E.R group in assessing Miami’s new SMART Transit plans in terms of efficiency, access, and technology. She hopes to continue her work to provide mobility for the cities she works in.

Ella Souder
Just Transition Team
Ella Souder is a junior at the University of Miami's Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Sciences majoring in marine biology with minors in anthropology and ecosystem science and policy. She is passionate about environmental policy and working toward a sustainable future. She is currently with the P.E.E.R. group's Just Transition team working toward an equitable transition to clean energy in Miami.
Claudia Stevens
Equitable Weatherization Team
Claudia Stevens is joint degree J.D. and M.P.S. candidate at University of Miami’s School of Law and Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science.  As a University of Miami School of Law HOPE Summer Fellow at P.E.E.R. Group, Claudia hopes to continue promoting climate justice and equity while focusing on the unique environmental threats to South Florida shorelines and communities.

Jailah Williams
Equitable Weatherization Team
Jailah is an aspiring attorney currently pursuing her Bachelor of Arts in Criminology at the University of Miami. As an environmental justice intern who believes that climate justice is just one of the many components of racial justice, Jailah was drawn to P.E.E.R. by her passion to serve marginalized and vulnerable communities in South Florida and beyond.

Antecedents

Ella Souder
Research Associate

Ella graduated from the University of Miami's Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Sciences with a degree in marine biology and minors in anthropology and ecosystem science and policy. She is passionate about environmental policy and working toward a sustainable future. Ella was a part of our EJIP Summer 2021 cohort working in the Just Transition campaign. She returned to us as a research associate in the Sustainable Community Development campaign. She is currently working in marine conservation in New Jersey.

Sophie Walenta
Research Associate

Sophie is a student at the University of Miami pursuing dual degrees in Ecosystem Science and Policy and Marine Affairs with a minor in Geospatial Technology. In addition to her academic studies, she served as an intern with the P.E.E.R. Group during the Fall of 2021 and a research assistant for the Environmental Justice Clinic (EJC) at the University of Miami School of Law. She returned to the P.E.E.R. Group as a research associate from January to July in 2022 to continue working on policy work and geospatial mapping. She will graduate in 2023.




Environmental Justice Clinic
University of Miami
School of Law



Kristen Dagher
Alternative Winter Break 2021

Kristen is a second-year law student at the University of Miami School of Law. She received her Bachelor's of Art in Business and Master's of Science in the Science of Health Care Delivery from Arizona State University. She is currently a law clerk at Legal Services of Greater Miami, Inc., on a disability law project, and a fellow for the Center for Ethics and Public Service Lab, where she works closely with community partners to address health disparities. Kristen’s work with the law school’s public interest group introduced her to P.E.E.R. Group, where she participated in an alternative break researching local environmental justice issues.
Rajvi Shah
Rajvi is an undergraduate at the University of Miami with a major in Geography and Sustainable Development with focuses in Smart Cities and Geospatial Technology. She is passionate about designing sustainable cities for the welfare of all people, starting with efficient transportation. She took part in the EJIP Summer 2021 program and returned to work with the P.E.E.R group on sustainable community development for the Fall.
J. Scott Largen, Esq.
Scott Largen is an attorney in the Miami area. Scott received his J.D. from the University of Miami and bachelor of science in Finance from Virginia Tech. Scott endeavors to use his education and training toward serving the housing needs of South Florida.
Zubin Kapadia, Esq.
Zubin Kapadia is an attorney with the Florida Justice Center who received his J.D. from Howard University and Environmental and Energy LL.M. from Georgetown University. Zubin assisted with supervision in the Environmental Justice Intern Program. Zubin endeavors to use his skills and talents towards building a just, sustainable, and equitable future.
Natalia Brown, B.A.
Natalia Brown is a recent graduate of the University of Miami. Natalia assisted in the UM Racial Justice Grant Environmental Public Health work in our Housing Justice campaign. She currently serves as the Climate Justice Director for Catalyst Miami.
Joseph Mogul
Joseph is a Junior at Macalester College majoring in Environmental Studies and minoring in Economics. He was a part of the EJIP program in the Summer of 2021 and then joined us as an economic intern, advocating for underserved communities and the environment in Miami. Joseph hopes to continue his work in the environmental/social justice world, specifically focusing on solutions to economic disparities perpetuated by structures in contemporary institutions.