College of Law

Environmental Justice in Salt Lake City

Environmental Justice in Salt Lake City

DATE: Thursday, September 7 2023
TIME: 12:15 pm - 1:15 pm MST
LOCATION: College of Law and Virtual Event
COST: Free and open to the public.
1 hour CLE (pending).
A Wallace Stegner Center and Equity, Diversity & Inclusion at Utah Law Event

Latinx Heritage Month


As part of the law school’s Latinx Heritage Month programming, this panel will explore some of the environmental justice issues affecting Latinx communities in Salt Lake City, including air quality, the proposed expansion of Highway I-15, the inland port, and more. Panelists will discuss ongoing community-led advocacy efforts, research studies, and next steps in local struggles for environmental justice.



Ruhan S. Nagra, Associate Professor of Law and founding director of the Environmental Justice Clinic, University of Utah S.J. Quinney College of Law (Moderator)
Prior to joining the Law School, Nagra was Director of the Environmental Justice Initiative and a Senior Clinical Supervisor at the University Network for Human Rights, which she co-founded in 2018. At the University Network, Nagra worked with frontline communities in the United States and globally to challenge environmental injustice. Nagra was previously a clinical instructor at Stanford Law School’s Human Rights Clinic.


Meisei Gonzalez, Environmental Justice Advocate and Communicator
Meisei Gonzalez (he/him), is an environmental communicator and advocate. As a queer Latino with immigrant parents, he works alongside nonprofits, coalitions, and community leaders to find solutions for the issue of inequity within his community. Currently, he is responsible for managing communications for HEAL Utah, providing digital communication support for Alliance Community Services, and collaborating to guide a wellness liaison program with The University of Utah and The Kearns Library.


Olivia Juarez, Public Lands Program Director, GreenLatinos
Olivia Juarez (they/she) is a lifelong Utahn currently based in Salt Lake City, UT as GreenLatinos’ Public Lands Program Director. Through work with Latino Outdoors, Utah Coalition of La Raza, and the Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance, Olivia has nurtured Latinx joy and leadership in conserving nuestra tierra pública. Olivia was recognized as one of “10 Under 40” in 2021 by the National Parks Conservation Association for their commitment to creating safe, equitable access to public lands for Latino community health. Olivia holds an Honors Peace and Conflict Studies degree from the University of Utah. They enjoy camping with family, loud music, playing in the snow, bicycling, yoga, and gazing at cryptobiotic soils.


Daniel Mendoza, Research Assistant Professor, Atmospheric Sciences, University of Utah
Dr. Daniel Mendoza holds joint appointments as Research Assistant Professor in the Department of Atmospheric Sciences and Adjunct Assistant Professor in the Pulmonary Division in the School of Medicine, and the Department of City & Metropolitan Planning at the University of Utah. His research interests include quantifying and characterizing urban greenhouse gas and criteria pollutant emissions for use in human exposure estimation and metropolitan planning. He also examines the health effects associated with acute and chronic pollutant exposure, particularly in vulnerable populations. His research agenda focuses on environmental exposure inequalities, resulting health disparities, and the economic cost as well as enactable policy measures to address these issues through equitable urban development solutions.


This event is sponsored by the Wallace Stegner Center for Land, Resources & the Environment and Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion within Student Affairs at Utah Law.


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The S.J. Quinney College of Law is pleased to provide free CLE opportunities for attorneys. All donations welcome to support our programs.