June Seminar: A Roundtable Discussion of Environmental Health Equity

Event Date:
June 22nd 9:00 AM - 10:00 AM

Panelists: Nicole Burt, Cleveland Museum of Natural History; Crystal Davis, Alliance for the Great Lakes; Heather Taylor-Miesle, Ohio Environmental Council

Moderator: Dr. Darcy Freedman, Director: Swetland Center for Environmental Health 

Topic: This discussion, featuring three members of the Swetland Center Advisory Council, will highlight the "hot issues" in environmental health equity both locally and statewide.  

Dr. Nicole Burt is the Curator of Human Health and Evolutionary Medicine at the Cleveland Museum of Natural History. She is one of only a handful of health curators housed at Natural History Museums. She works to integrate the museums health mission with the missions of sustainability and the protection of biodiversity.  As a curator she focuses on both her own research and on public education initiatives around understanding and promoting better health. Dr. Burt is a biological anthropologist whose work focuses on applying an evolutionary approach to human health to improve individual and public health interventions. She researches diet and health of modern and archaeological human populations using stable isotope analysis of hair and teeth. 

Crystal M.C. Davis is a respected professional with a career in government affairs that bloomed in Columbus, Ohio and Washington D.C. Crystal is currently with the Alliance for the Great Lakes as its Vice President of Policy & Strategic Engagement, leading the organization’s efforts related to Lake Erie, drinking water policy advocacy and relationship building across the region. To return to Greater Cleveland, Crystal left a position in D.C. as the Federal Relations Director for Kent State University, where she established KSU’s federal office and policy agenda on Capitol Hill. Her previous experience includes stints with the Ohio House of Representatives, the Ohio Legislative Black Caucus, and the Ohio Department of Natural Resources. Crystal is a graduate of Kent State University, a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Inc., an Ohio Lake Erie Commissioner, Environmental Commissioner and member of the J.E.D.I. Committee for the City of Twinsburg, Ohio, 2018 Crain’s Cleveland Business 40 under 40 Honoree and winner of the 2015 Ohio Trio Trailblazer Award. She is an Akron, Ohio native and now lives in Northeast Ohio with her husband and their two young children.

Heather Taylor-Miesle has more than 20 years of experience advocating for greater environmental and public health protections, and working with our nation’s top decision-makers to bring environmental issues into the political spotlight. During her time as Executive Director at the Ohio Environmental Council, she has expanded staff from 17 to up to 30 and led the organization through the planning and adoption of our strategic plan. Under her leadership, the OEC has achieved a substantial number of its 5 year goals in only two years. Heather is also a high profile public figure who negotiated Ohio's historic redistricting proposal. In May 2018, Ohio voters overwhelmingly passed a constitutional amendment to end gerrymandering in Ohio.  Prior to joining the OEC, Heather was the leader of the NRDC Action Fund, where she grew the organization from a mere concept into an environmental powerhouse in national politics. She also served as the NRDC’s deputy legislative director, worked with Fortune 500 companies to strengthen their sustainability practices, and held key aide positions on Capitol Hill working on energy and natural resources issues. Heather studied political science and communications at Marietta College in Marietta, Ohio and earned her Master’s of public administration from the University of Southern California. Her and her husband, Don, have 2 wonderful children, Elia and Isaiah.