My research focuses on vehicle residency, homelessness, critical narratives, public policy and outreach to marginalized people in the United States. I bring diverse perspectives to the field as a social scientist, previous outreach specialist for social services, and recipient of social welfare programs as a former homeless youth and teen parent.
In 2010, I began research at the University of Washington on vehicle residency - or the habitation of vehicles in public parking. This research provided the opportunity to develop and direct the Vehicular Residency Research Program (VRRP) at Seattle University, where I led teams of field researchers to document vehicle residency from 2012 to 2013. Our 2012 VRRP Advisory Report for the City of Seattle City Council Human Services Committee was instrumental in developing local safe parking programs, and our vehicle residency identification methodology was adopted for the 2017 to 2019 annual counts of unsheltered people in King County. In 2015, I joined the (US HUD mandated) Seattle/King County Continuum of Care coordinating agency, All Home, serving on the Executive Board, Governing Board and as co-Chair of the Policy Committee.
I received my Ph.D. in 2019 at the University of Washington Department of Anthropology with the support of the US National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship program. I currently contract as a Liaison for the Unhoused Community for the City of Seattle, serve on the Mayor of Seattle's Innovation Advisory Council, and have led the documentation of regional vehicle residency for the annual point-in-time count of homeless and unhoused people since 2017. I am honored to participate in the University of Washington's interdisciplinary Critical Narratives Team and Homeless Research Initiative, and to help communities across the U.S. include safe places for vehicle residents in their existing systems of care.