Interim Director

Susan A. Phillips has been at Pitzer since 2002 and has worn many hats during her time at the college. A Professor of Environmental Analysis, she directed the Community Engagement Center and the CASA Pitzer program prior to coming to the Robert Redford Conservancy. Phillips is interested in participatory research and pedagogy, community-led strategies for equitable sustainability, nature-based solutions for climate resilience, theories of violence and inequality, anarchic social forms, and intersections between urban history, material life, and the built environment. Phillips has studied gangs, graffiti, and the US prison system since 1990. Phillips received her Ph.D. in anthropology in 1998 from UCLA and is author of three books: Wallbangin: Graffiti and Gangs in L.A. (Chicago, 1999), Operation Fly Trap: Gangs, Drugs, and the Law (Chicago, 2012), and The City Beneath: A Century of Los Angeles Graffiti (Yale, 2019). Phillips has received numerous grants, including two Getty fellowships, a Soros Justice Media Fellowship, a short-term Huntington research fellowship, and a Harry Frank Guggenheim research grant for the study of violence.

Redford Conservancy Fellow in Applied Research-Sustainable Agriculture

Arthur Levine

Arthur Levine is from New York City, and has resided in SoCal since 2009. He has worked in urban and community-food-systems for 13 years. While in high school, he built a strong knowledge of community gardens and advocacy groups that defend them through participation in More Gardens Fund and multiple urban farms in Brooklyn (Hattie Carthan) and the Bronx (Finca del Sur). From 2008-2011 he organized youth service-learning solidarity brigades to New Orleans to learn and educate about the systemic racial and environmental justice challenges facing communities in the aftermath of hurricane Katrina and the recovery/revitalization process. Training with Growing Power through Our School at Blair Grocery in New Orleans, he was not only able to learn sustainable urban agriculture, but was also able to connect how urban farming can be applied as a tool for education, public health, economic development, environmental sustainability, and organizing. Arthur graduated from Pitzer College in 2014 with a degree in Neuroscience. He is a former Community Engagement Fellow for the Pitzer in Ontario program (2014-2017) where he supported student service-learning, internships, and the growth and development of Huerta del Valle. Arthur is a co-founder of Huerta del Valle and former Board member and Projects Director at HdV (2017-2021). Arthur’s work at HdV built a large urban composting operation, three working urban farms, the development of the three community gardens and an innovative New and Beginning Farmer training program. Levine also specializes in organizational development, land access, and fundraising. He helped raise over $2.5 million dollars (private, state, and federal) through grants and partnerships for HdV and acquired access to over 40 acres of public and private land helping to expand HdV’s farm and garden network to a regional reach. Aside from his new role as Fellow in Applied Research at the Robert Redford Conservancy for Southern California Sustainability at Pitzer College, he sits on the boards of Riverside Food Systems AllianceFeed Black Futures, and Agroecology Commons. Arthur is bilingual in Spanish and English and regularly acts as an interpreter and is a UCC-SB Master gardener.

Environmental Education Curriculum Specialist

Samantha M. Johnson

Samantha M. Johnson is a science illustrator, marine biologist, and active member of the Gabreleno Tongva Band of Mission Indians. She has always loved art and science. However, it wasn’t until later on while earning her Bachelors in Science in Marine Biology that she realized she didn’t have to choose between the two in her career. As a painter, animator, and digital illustrator; she strives to engage the public to learn more about the world. As an active member of the Gabreleno Tongva Band of Mission Indians, she also strives to honor Creator in all of her artwork.