Policy Trainings

Our policy program is committed to building pathways for students, faculty, administrators, and the general public to learn about and experience policymaking firsthand. As part of that goal, we develop policy trainings for various audiences, including research faculty and graduate students, interested in either collaboration with policymakers or translating their academic work for policy.

We will post information about future training opportunities here. Please check back soon for details.

If you have questions on past or future policy trainings, please contact Sakeenah Shabazz, BFI Policy Director, at

Click below to read about past policy training.

Past Policy Trainings

Session details

Session 1

Policy Engagement: Dos, Don’ts and Dares: Overview of legal guidelines and description of best practices in policymaking and a “dare” to engage more fully in policy and government

Date: November 15, 2017

Featuring: Gina Banks Daly, Director, UC Berkeley Government Relations

Gina Banks Daly joined UC Berkeley as the Director of Federal Relations in early 2015. Previously, she was the Director of Federal Government Relations for UC Davis for several years. She currently also serves in a leadership capacity for Association of American Universities and Association of Public and Land-Grant Universities. Prior to joining the UC family, she was Director of Field Services for United States Senator Dianne Feinstein. She represented the Senator in 28 Northern California counties, including advising the Senator on local, regional and statewide issues. She began her political career in Washington, DC working on Capitol Hill for Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and Senator Feinstein. She received her Masters in Public Policy from UC Berkeley’s Goldman School of Public Policy and graduated cum laude with Honors in Government from Claremont McKenna College.


Session 2

Working with Outside Organizations on Research, Policy, and Dissemination: Roundtable on best practices for transdisciplinary collaboration beyond the academy.

Date: December 13, 2017

Featuring: Tia Shimada, Director of Programs, California Food Policy Advocates; Lorrene Ritchie, Director, UCANR Nutrition Policy Institute

Tia Shimada MPH provides overarching leadership for CFPA’s programmatic work to improve the health and well-being of low-income Californians by increasing access to nutritious, affordable food. She also oversees the development and execution of CFPA’s annual research agenda. Her areas of expertise include policy advocacy to optimize the federal nutrition programs, particularly school and summer meals, and harnessing research to drive public policy. Tia has a strong interest in advancing equity and inclusion through systems change. She received her Master of Public Health from UC Berkeley and joined the staff in 2009.

Lorrene Ritchie PhD, RD is the inaugural Director of the Nutrition Policy Institute and Cooperative Extension Specialist in the University of California Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources. Dr. Ritchie has devoted her career to the development of interdisciplinary, science-based and culturally relevant solutions to child obesity and has conducted studies in numerous settings on the impact of nutrition policies and programs. Current research interests include evaluation of the relationship of school-level programs and policies on student dietary intakes, the impact of policy on nutrition practices in child care settings, the relationship of federal, state and community-level programs and policies with child nutrition and weight status, and the impact of WIC nutrition education on child feeding practices.


Session 3

Engaging with the Media
Training on practical tools for researchers and policy experts to effectively engage with the media.

Date: February 7, 2018

Featuring: Haven Bourque, Founder, HavenBMedia


Session 4

Using Social Media for Influencer Engagement
Overview of the role of social media in the social and environmental justice movements and a training on how experts can amplify their work and engage with news cycle topics, reporters, and outlets via social media

Date: March 13, 2018

Featuring: Haven Bourque, Founder, HavenBMedia

Haven Bourque offers communications expertise in service of food systems transformation. In 2010, she founded her Oakland-based group, HavenBMedia. The group develops communications strategies that tell powerful stories with a wide scope of proficiencies including messaging and positioning development, media training for PR mastery, and spokesperson development. Haven honed her skills working with major national NGOs focused on food, farming, labor, and ocean conservation, among them FairTrade USA, the Humane Society of the United States, Monterey Bay Aquarium, and the Environmental Defense Fund. She has earned national recognition for developing media training workshops for organizations including Pesticide Action Network, Food Chain Workers Alliance, California Food Policy Council, Anna Lappe’s Real Food Media Project, FERN News, the Ecological Farming Association, and the Chefs Collaborative. She is a contributing writer to Civil Eats, a Good Food Awards judge, and a member of the Oakland Food Policy Council.