Samantha Cunningham is a current fourth-year MD-PhD student at the University of California, Irvine, studying the interactions between ocean ecosystems and human health. She graduated from NYU in 2017 with a major in Sociology and minors in Mathematics and Chemistry. Her research focuses on large-scale interventions, such as ecosystem services, that can be utilized to improve human health.
In 2016 and 2017, Samantha worked closely with Dr. Sarah Cowan to compile the initial data and contacts for the Cash Transfer Lab. Samantha loves to hang out with her two dogs and take beautiful beach and hiking trips in her free time.
Ruby currently attends the University of Chicago, studying History and Political Science. Throughout her academic career, she has been most interested in American History and Politics, particularly the respective studies of inequality, race, and gender. Ruby’s professional goals are to pursue law school and work in public policy to reform policies in systems of psychiatric healthcare. Previously, she was involved in impactful internships with Brooklyn Defender Services and The Sociology Project.
Ruby worked with the Cash Transfer Lab in its initial development stage as a research assistant primarily responsible for aggregating data to answer pressing questions about Alaska. In her time with the lab, she created memos on Alaskan healthcare distribution and the evolving sectors of Alaska's economy. She also produced a comprehensive guide to past academic research on PFD. In her free time, Ruby finds herself dancing to hip-hop and jazz music, viewing art and theatre, and indulging in her love for vintage fashion.
Sydney Harris is a junior student studying Sociology at NYU College of Arts and Science. She is interested in legal studies, psychology, mental health, and the effects of trauma on the well-being of individuals and communities. Sydney aspires to become a civil rights lawyer to advocate for marginalized groups and eventually found a trauma-informed foster care program.
Sydney was previously a research assistant at the Cash Transfer Lab, working on compiling economic indicators and demographic datasets. In her free time, Sydney enjoys cooking Italian and breakfast foods, sewing, and drawing.
Jessica is an NYU graduate of Arts and Sciences (2021) with a Ph.D. in Sociology and a Masters in Applied Quantitative Research (2014). Her academic and professional interests include neighborhood racial and socioeconomic change, racial inequality in formal and informal social control, linguistic discrimination, inequality in access to democratic institutions; and racial and socioeconomic differences in attitudes toward voting.
Jessica is currently the Director of Research at Public Wise, a small non-profit that works to advance equity in democracy. In this role, she recently launched wave one of a multi-year panel study using the AmeriSpeak panel to investigate voting behavior and perceptions of procedural fairness in government and elections. Jessica has also co-authored a research paper on mistranscription in the courtroom, which received extensive media coverage. She is dedicated to doing the rigorous research that she hopes will advise policy recommendations to increase voting access and participation equity.
Jessica is a former research assistant of the Cash Transfer Lab, responsible for data checking and cleaning. She loves reading engaging novels.
Anne Kou is a current Ph.D. student in Sociology at NYU with a B.A. in French and Law, Jurisprudence, and Social Thought from Amherst College. She is interested in how social policies mitigate and reproduce inequalities in gender, race, and class. Anne is currently studying the impacts of universal paid family leave policies on the economic and health outcomes for working mothers. In 2020, she was awarded a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship.
Anne is a former research assistant for the Cash Transfer Lab. She practices ballet and indulges in DIY projects.
Hunter Meachum grew up in her ancestral homelands in Southeast Alaska. She is Tlingit of the Eagle moiety and Kaagwaantaan from the Two Door House and the House on the Water. Hunter holds a bachelor’s degree in Sociology from the University of Colorado Boulder and is currently studying Public Policy at NYU's Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service. Most recently, Hunter was a legislative aide for Representative Sara Hannan at the Alaska State Legislature, where the issue of the Permanent Fund Dividend is extremely salient.
Hunter is a former Graduate Research Assistant at the Cash Transfer Lab.
Talya Nevins is a newly enrolled J.D candidate at the NYU School of Law. In 2018, she received a B.A. degree in Near Eastern Studies and a certificate in Gender and Sexuality Studies at Princeton University. She is curious about how new technologies reify existing axes of power and entrench new modes of discrimination. In law school, Talya plans to research the legal tools for addressing civil rights violations and social inequalities created and exacerbated by data capitalism. Talya previously worked as an Investigative Analyst in the Manhattan District Attorney’s Major Economic Crimes Bureau, where she had a hand in large-scale fraud, larceny, and tax evasion cases.
Before the Cash Transfer Lab was formally established, Talya assisted with preliminary data analysis of the Alaska Permanent Fund Dividend records and patterns of correlation with maternal health data back in 2015. She enjoys cooking and peaceful reading time in Prospect Park.
Jonah is a senior student at Duke University studying Political Science and minoring in Spanish and Philosophy. His interests are in social justice, urban planning, criminal justice reform, and electoral politics. Jonah previously interned with the Eviction Lab at Princeton University, where he examined eviction cases as a result of governmental policy, race-based factors, and poverty. He was awarded the “Ethics in Place” research award as a Kenan Institute for Ethics Research Fellow for his piece entitled “ Local Campaigns and Civic Engagement During the Coronavirus.” Jonah serves as the Political Director of the Duke Democrats organization, the co-chair of Duke Votes, and has been heavily involved in political volunteer work with the College Democrats of NC and Orange County Democratic Party.
Jonah worked with the Cash Transfer Lab as a research assistant collecting data for the lab’s partner scholars and Alaskan stakeholders and researching questions about the policy and Alaska’s demographic composition over time. Outside the lab, Jonah plays many sports, including basketball, ultimate frisbee, and football. He also enjoys exploring the topics of geography and history.
Dr. Pickett is a Senior Data Scientist in the Washington State Office of Financial Management, Forecasting and Research Division. Dr. Pickett was previously a Postdoctoral Research Associate at the Cash Transfer Lab, where he worked on statistical approaches to identify the causal effects of the PFD. He received his Ph.D. in Sociology and Demography from UC Berkeley, where he explored the interplay between quantitative methods and constructionist race theory.
Celine Thompson is Department Administrator of Digital Learning at NYU's Tandon School of Engineering. Previously, Celine worked as Program Assistant to the Cash Transfer Lab and the Administrative Aide for the Sociology Department at NYU Arts and Science. She holds a Bachelor's degree in Human Development from the University at Albany and due to her interests in technology, recently completed certifications in software development and Google Data Analytics.