View a video of the Nov. 30 event at L.A. Kitchen.

The UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs and the UCLA Food Studies Graduate Certificate Program held a 10-week series on the topics of Urban Agriculture, Food Security, and Food Policy off the table and bring awareness to the food movement in the Los Angeles area.

Part of the Luskin Lecture Series, which enhances public discourse on topics relevant to the betterment of society. 

The Events

Saturday, October 7th
8:00 am – 1:00 pm
Wattles Farm, Los Angeles

9th Annual UCLA Volunteer Day with UCLA Luskin

Participate in UCLA’s largest day of service! Get your hands dirty alongside fellow Luskin-ites and dig into LA’s oldest community garden, which has lived on 4.2 acres of lush land since 1975. Friends & family over the age of 18 are also welcome to sign up!

Click here to RSVP

Be sure to type LUSKIN as your group affiliation.

Wednesday, October 18th
2:00 pm – 4:00  pm
2343 Public Affairs

Join URBN PL 269: Got Spam? The Making of a Good Food System on October 18th for a conversation with Paula Daniels (course instructor and Founder of the LA Food Policy Council) and Meyer Luskin of the Luskin School of Public Affairs, owner of a national food waste recovery business

Students are welcome to join this class for one session.

RSVP by Tuesday, October 17th

Thursday, October 26th
6:00 – 9:00 pm
3rd Floor Commons, Public Affairs
RSVP by Wednesday, October 25th

It’s national food week! Join us for a festival and panel discussion on food security featuring speakers from  Food Forward, Hunger Action LA, and more.  There will be food, fun, and booths to get you connected to the movement!

  • Moderator: Alum Jessica McBride MURP ’14
  • Fatinah Darwish is a Program Manager at the LA County Department of Public Health (LACDPH), Nutrition and Physical Activity Program. She leads the coalition, County Nutrition Action Partnership (CNAP) which aims to reduce food insecurity by increasing inter-agency coordination among government, healthcare and non-profit organizations. Prior to LACDPH, Fatinah worked four years as a clinical dietitian at PIH Health Hospital – Downey and Kindred Healthcare Brea. She received a B.S. in Human Ecology at the Ohio State University; completed her dietetic internship at the VA Greater Los Angeles Healthcare Systems; and earned a Master in Public Health from UCLA, Fielding School of Public Health.
  • Dr. Rhea Holler is a clinician, trainer, and instructor in private practice in Los Angeles and Orange County. Her training and research focus on bringing a trauma-informed approach to issues of poverty and mental health recovery. Dr. Holler served as Dialectical Behavior Therapy program coordinator at the Long Beach VA Medical Center.  Her passion is the integration of mindfulness and empirically-based treatments to help complex trauma survivors, veterans, first responders, and mental health providers enjoy the life they are living.
  • Rick Nahmias is the Founder/Executive Director of Food Forward.  His formal training as a cook, along with his exploration of California’s agricultural workforce in his body of work entitled “The Migrant Project: Contemporary California Farm Workers” gave him a deep appreciation of and involvement in both the gourmet cooking and the food justice worlds.
  • Frank Tamborello began his career with a variety of grassroots activist campaigns in his homestate of Texas and volunteer work in Angola. After migrating to Los Angeles, Frank worked with the LA Coalition to End Hunger & Homelessness and helped to develop the Hollywood Community Action Network. In 2006 Frank co-founded Hunger Action LA and is now the Executive Director. Hunger Action LA works to ending hunger and promoting healthy eating through advocacy, direct service, and organizing.

Wednesday, November 1
7:30 p.m.

Hammer Museum, Los Angeles (10899 Wilshire Blvd.)

In the GMO (genetically modified organisms) debate, both pro- and anti-camps claim science is on their side. Who’s right? Narrated by Neil deGrasse Tyson, this documentary visits Hawaiian papaya groves, Ugandan banana farms, and Iowan cornfields to investigate the heated debate about our food and where it comes from. A Q&A with director Scott Hamilton Kennedy follows.

Tuesday, November 7th
6:00 – 8:00 pm
La Kretz Garden Pavilion, UCLA
RSVP by Monday, November 6th

Panel discussion on the community and health benefits of urban farming for the veteran population. Participants will have the opportunity to learn more about the 14 acre veteran garden, right here in Westwood.

  • Moderator: Kris Skinner
  • Alum Peter Capone-Newton (MA ’09, PhD ‘13) , Physician, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs
  • Mick Deluca, Assistant Vice Chancellor, UCLA Campus Life
  • Jeremy Samson, Veteran and Urban Farmer
  • Julie Sardonia, Program Director, Veteran Farmers of America

Monday, November 13th
6:00 – 9:00 pm
James Bridges Theater, UCLA

A documentary about, Dolores Huerta, who tirelessly led the fight for racial and labor justice for farm workers alongside Chavez, becoming one of the most defiant feminists of the twentieth century—the film reveals the raw, personal stakes involved in committing one’s life to social change. Camila Chavez, Executive Director of the Dolores Huerta Foundation and daughter of Dolores Huerta and Richard Chavez, will do a Q&A following the screening.

RSVP by Tuesday, November 7th

Thursday, November 30th
6:00 – 9:00 pm
LA Kitchen, Lincoln Heights

RSVP by Monday, November 27th

A moderated discussion on the sustainability of social enterprises within the food industry. Evan Kleiman, Chef and host of Good Food on KCRW, will be joined by panelists who strive to improve our community through for-profit businesses. Attendees will learn about food cost and distribution through an interactive cooking class led by Kleiman.

  • Moderator/Chef: Evan Kleiman
  • Anar Joshi, Everytable
  • Kaitlin Mogentale, Pulp Pantry
  • Nick Panepinto, LA Kitchen
  • Karla T. Vasquez, SalviSoul

Click here for panelist bios!

Dates and times will vary throughout the fall quarter. Check back here for details or email to learn how you can get involved!


For more information about the fall series please contact

Learn more about the Luskin School of Public Affairs

Learn more about the Food Studies Graduate Certificate Program

This series is sponsored by