Dr. Ashley Gripper was born and raised in Philadelphia, PA. Her work focuses on Black people’s connections to Earth and reclamation of land-based living and organizing practices. She has been active in food and land justice movements for a decade and as a result, has built strong relationships with urban and rural growers around the country. Ashley is a community builder and the Founding Organizer of Land Based Jawns, a spiritually-rooted organization that supports Black Philadelphians who want to grow deeper in their relationships to land, food, and ancestral spirituality. Land Based Jawns offers workshops and education on agriculture, carpentry, land-based living, and safety with a focus on self and community healing. Ashley began her formal farming training at Sankofa Community Farm in Southwest Philadelphia. She is a member of Soil Generation and is working with the team to design Philadelphia’s first Urban Agriculture Strategic Plan, set to be released this summer. Ashley received her PhD in Population Health Sciences from the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. Her research is transdisciplinary and uses mixed-methods to explore the associations between urban agriculture, mental health, spirituality, and collective agency. In the fall, Ashley will begin as an Assistant Professor of Racism and Population Health Equity at Drexel’s Dornsife School of Public Health. She will join the Department of Community Health and Prevention with a secondary appointment in Environmental and Occupational Health. Her appointment is in alignment with the Ubuntu Center on Racism, Global Movements, and Population Health Equity and will help to advance the Center’s mission and scholarship.