Science for the People

Science for the People (SftP) is a nationwide organization that engages in research, activism, and science communications for the betterment of society, ecological improvement, environmental protection, and to serve human needs. Members of Science for the People consist of STEM workers, educators, and activists who are socially and ethically focused, and believe that science should be a positive force for humanity and the planet.  

The Atlanta Chapter

Here in Atlanta, our local chapter builds on a rich local community of scientists and science enthusiasts to connect scientists with the Atlanta community. Our work seeks to bring scientific insight into local discourse and grassroots actions, as well as bettering scientific research and technologies with local knowledges and connecting with the needs of various communities. Our strategy is two-fold: 1) agitating from within the science research community for better practices, such as community-focussed research, open science principles, decolonizing the scientific canon and expanding “accepted” modes of knowledge production; 2) take science out of the Ivory Towers to get scientists in touch with community issues and to share STEM-related skills & resources and use them to affect change that improves the lives of people and the health of the environment.  

Explore Who We Are

This visualization represents the members of Sftp-Atlanta Chapter and their connections to different fields and skills.
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Code available on our Github repository .

SftP-Atlanta Chapter Members

Heather Saul

Heather Saul is a public health and international development professional with a decade of experience working with marginalized and underserved groups. Within SFTP, Heather offers expertise in the area of facilitating community-owned projects, designing interventions using participatory (democratic) methods, and building communication campaigns to impact positive behavior change within communities.  

Yacin Nadji

Yacin Nadji is a computer security researcher interested and an expert in network security, data analysis and applied machine learning. Yacin also has experience in programming, teaching, public speaking, management of technical projects, and business finance and taxes. His interests center around education, particularly of at-risk children, data analysis for good, and open access to data and scientific results.

David Hofmann

David Hofmann is a physicist and neuroscientist who does research on decision making and is an expert in machine learning and data analysis. He has experience in teaching as well as organizing workshops and summer schools. David is an ardent advocate of open science. His belief is that opening up science will not just improve science itself but also help facilitate citizen science. He is also a political activist and unionist who beliefs that only an egalitarian and free society is a beautiful society.    

Frank Bove

Frank Bove is an environmental and occupational epidemiologist at the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR), which is part of the CDC. My research focuses mainly on the health effects of exposures to chemically-contaminated drinking water although I have worked on cancer, birth defect and autism cluster investigations.  In all my work at CDC, I try to involve the affected community in the decision-making concerning studies and other health activities. I am president of the board of ECO-Action, an environmental justice organization in GA. I have been active with various organizations in GA over the years including Project South and Jobs with Justice.  I worked full time as an issue and community organizer in the Boston area from 1975 to 1982.  During June 1975-January 1977, I was one of two paid staff people at SftP and also served briefly on the magazine editorial committee. I was a paid staff person for the Boston Clamshell Alliance, an anti-nuclear power, pro-renewable energy organization during Sept 1977-Sept 1978 and was arrested at the Seabrook nuclear power plant occupation in May 1977 (along with over 1,400 others).  

Robert Pienta

Robert Pienta is a data and visual analytics PhD candidate, who researches graph querying and graph sensemaking. He has experience with machine learning and data mining at both a theoretical as well as practical level. He has also made numerous visualization systems using web technologies. He expertise includes: public speaking, programming, technical management, technical systems architecture, and design (usually web-related design, but not exclusively).  Robert is interested in broadening the public understanding of science as well as forwarding science-driven policy making.  

Chelsea Dunn

Chelsea Dunn is a research specialist in the Biochemistry Department at Emory University.  

David Nicholson

David Nicholson is a graduate student in neuroscience.  Previous experience includes organizing outreach for the local chapter of our professional organization. In this role he matched scientists with teachers for classroom visits and also designed lessons plans and activities for visits that he participated in. He also planned and secured funding for a booth at a citywide science festival. This booth continues to be one of the most popular attractions at the festival each year. In addition, he is a programmer and contribute to open-source projects. He has also helped organize events to promote open-source software skills for scientists at his school. Along the same lines he is part of the local data science community and am interested in how data scientists can best work with communities to support them.  

Katherine Bryant

Postdoctoral fellow in anthropology, trained in evolutionary neuroscience and neuroimaging. I have training in comparative neuroanatomy and women’s and gender studies. I have experience in grassroots organizing on behalf of students and faculty at Emory related to labor issues and faculty control of curricula in 2012/2013, which lead to an occupation of the Emory administration building and negotiations with the President of Emory. I’m a member of the media relations team for the Atlanta March for Science and an officer in the Emory chapter of the American Association for University Professors, which advocates for academic freedom. I’m also in the process of launching an NSF-funded social media campaign and podcast with the goal of increasing representation of women scientists’ stories and making science feel more accessible to non-scientists or possible future scientists. I’m particularly interested in issues of class and accessibility, and the culture of science and scientists and how this impacts who gets to create and interpret data, and the repercussions of this.

Rosa Romero

Rosa Romero is a postdoctoral fellow in data visualization for computer security. Particularly, her work involves research into the work practice of human analysts in operation centers and the design of visualization tools to facilitate the exploration and sense-making activities inherent in those environments; in other words helping human analysts to “understand what is going in order to make useful decisions”. She has also experience in teaching and supervising undergraduate and master’s students’ final projects, public speaking, and programming. She is interested in bridging the gap between people and science as well as addressing the lack of participation of girls in technology and computing.  

Guga Gogia

Guga Gogia is a third-year physics PhD student at Emory University. I study experimentally and numerically many-body interactions and emergent properties in far-from-equilibrium systems. I have experience designing and constructing various experimental setups, imaging and data analysis tools. I also have done quite bit of teaching, also I have been involved in outreach programs for local schools. I am immensely interested in inter-disciplinary studies and connecting seemingly unrelated academic & non-academic fields.  

Sucheta Ghoshal

Sucheta Ghoshal is a researcher, maker, and an activist. She works as a PhD student in the department of Human Centered Computing of Georgia Tech. In her research, she studies how science and technology can be mobilized for the causes of social justice. In a past life, she was professionally and personally involved in the movement of open knowledge led by Wikimedia Foundation for nearly seven years.  

R. Michael Winters

Michael Winters is a pianist and Ph.D. student at the Georgia Tech Center for Music Technology (GTCMT). As a student of the liberal arts, he received a double major in Physics and Music with minors in Philosophy and Mathematics from the College of Wooster in 2010. Beginning research in high-energy particle physics, his interest in data sonification led him to the Center for Interdisciplinary Research in Music Media and Technology (CIRMMT) at McGill University in Montreal, Quebec. His work at the Input Devices and Music Interaction Lab (IDMIL) explored the application of sonification as a tool for music research, targeting data in musical emotion, expressive gesture, and symbolic music. While pursuing his master’s degree, Winters performed at the McGill Conservatory, and specialized in live webcasts of ensembles such as the McGill Symphony Orchestra, Jazz Orchestra, Contemporary Music Ensemble, and Opera McGill, working alongside Grammy-winning producers George Massenberg and Richard King. At Georgia Tech he has worked in the Robotic Musicianship Group, Music Informatics Group, GVU BrainLab and the Sonification Lab. His current research practice centers around universal design, socio-cultural sonification aesthetics, neuroengineering, and musical learning.