Our Team

  • Max Brueckner-Humphreys

    Max Brueckner-Humphreys is currently a MS candidate in Applied Urban Science and Informatics at NYU CUSP. He is interested in how cities can better leverage technology and data to influence equitable, resilient policy for the rapidly changing urban landscape. Max graduated from SUNY New Paltz with a BA in Geography.

  • Alexis Captanian

    Alexis Captanian is a graduate student at the NYU Wagner School of Public Service,pursuing a Master of Urban Planning with a specialization in International Development Planning. Previously, Alexis worked at Prevention Institute, where she coordinated the organization’s Mental Health Team, focused on promoting mental wellbeing and preventing substance misuse through comprehensive population-level approaches. In her role, she facilitated Making Connections for Mental Health and Wellbeing Among Men and Boys, a national initiative to transform community conditions that influence wellbeing, especially among boys and men of color, veterans and their families. She has contributed to research at the Public Health Institute identifying opportunities for action at the intersection of climate change, health, and equity, and has worked with a variety of other organizations in areas such as youth leadership, environmental education, and homelessness. Alexis studied as a Regents’ and Chancellor’s Scholar at the University of California at Berkeley, where she received her Bachelor of Arts in Public Health.

  • Jiaqi Dong

    Jiaqi Dong is a second year Master of Urban Planning student, with a specialization in Urban Analytics. She graduated from NYU Shanghai in 2018 with a B.S. degree, double major in Business and Finance and Interactive Media Arts. Her prior research focused on street food vending and urbanization in Shanghai, as well as bike sharing system data visualization and operation analysis. She is interested in economic inequality associated with urban planning practices.

  • Eliza Ezrapour

    Eliza Ezrapour is a JD/Masters in Urban Planning candidate, specializing in Housing and Economic Development. She received her bachelor's degree in Geography and French from Dartmouth College in 2018. Eliza is interested in researching location-based differences in the impact of affordable housing policies. 

  • Nardos Girma

    Nardos Girma is a second-year student at NYU School of Law and a Root-Tilden-Kern Scholar. She is interested in affordable housing, tenant protections, and the intersection between land use/zoning regulations and environmental policy. Nardos graduated from Stanford University in 2014 with a degree in Political Science and worked in the California State Legislature prior to law school. 

  • Benjamin Heller

    Benjamin Heller is a first-year Master of Public Administration student, specializing in Policy Analysis. Before moving to New York, he worked for Ernst & Young and for London's Metropolitan Police, focusing on organizational culture, ethics, and accountability; he also volunteered with the UK Restorative Justice Council. Ben graduated from the University of Chicago with a B.A. in political science. He is interested in using research to understand and address neighborhood change, urban poverty, and crime.

  • Olivia Lee

    Olivia Lee is an office assistant at the NYU Furman Center. She is currently studying at the NYU Stern School of Business, studying Finance, Data Science, and English Literature. She is interested in community development banking and how banks address the needs of, and inequities within, low-income communities. 

  • Ayesha Lilaoonwala

    Ayesha Lilaoonwala is a second year, full-time Master of Urban Planning candidate at NYU Wagner, specializing in Economic Development and Housing. She is particularly interested in the development and preservation of affordable housing and alleviating homelessness. Prior to NYU, she worked for a small international development firm in the Washington D.C. area that focuses on monitoring and evaluating projects for USAID. She holds a B.A. in Environmental Studies with a minor in Economics from Bucknell University.

  • Kayla Merriweather

    Kayla Merriweather is a senior at New York University in the Gallatin School of Individualized Study, concentrating in History and Urban Politics through a Black Feminist Lens. On campus, she is a Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Scholar, the Co-President for the Black Student Union, and the Chair of the Student Government Assembly’s Student Success Committee. She also serves as a Resident Assistant in the Broome Street Residential College. Passionate about social justice, advocacy, and public service, Kayla plans to attend law school after graduation with hopes to become a lawyer, earn her Ph.D. in Education Policy and enter the political sphere.

  • Jonathan Morris

    Jonathan Morris is a second-year student at NYU School of Law.  Prior to law school, Jonathan earned a Ph.D. in Applied Science & Technology at the University of California, Berkeley studying photoprotection in photosynthetic systems.  Jonathan’s interests in housing and land use policy lie at the intersection of environmentalism, social justice, and federalism: finding the optimal policies to create sustainable and equitable cities and how to implement and navigate the regulatory, financial, and incentive structures to achieve those goals.  In addition to working with the Furman Center, Jonathan is also a Research Assistant with the Information Law Institute and was summer associate with a major law firm focusing on intellectual property matters.

  • Alan Patterson

    Alan Patterson is a Master of Urban Planning candidate at the NYU Wagner School of Public Service, specializing in economic development and housing. Prior to enrolling at Wagner, he worked at OPI Analytics in Mexico City as a consultant in data science related projects for different government agencies, including the Mexican National Fund for Workers' Housing and the Mexico City Government. He is interested in economic analysis related to housing and income inequality. Alan holds a B.A. in Business Administration with a specialization in information systems from the Mexican Autonomous Institute of Technology (ITAM). 

  • Annmarie Rodriguez

    Annmarie Rodriguez is a Master of Urban Planning candidate at NYU Wagner specializing in economic development and housing. Previously, she worked as a housing navigator and case manager at a nonprofit aimed at alleviating homelessness. In her role, she worked hands-ons with homeless individuals helping them find and retain stable housing and collaborated with the organization's data team to produce timely reports on clients from their recuperative care center. She holds a B.A. in English from Westmont College. In addition to working on the Furman Center's data team, Annmarie serves as a member of the Wagner Policy Alliance. She is interested in the role of affordable housing in providing low income households social mobility and a higher quality of life. 

  • Chris Shenton

    Chris is a second-year student at NYU School of Law. Chris graduated from UC San Diego with a B.A. in Literature/Creative Writing in 2014, and continued working at the university before coming to NYU. Chris is interested in how land use policy affects affordable housing, fair housing, and racial inequality, and hopes to work on housing justice and sustainable development after law school.