Dr. Matthew Richardson

Acting Director of Center for Urban Research, Engagement and Scholarship

Dr. Richardson coordinates the research and engagement within CURES. He is a product of land-grant universities, having earned degrees from the University of Delaware (BA, BS) and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (MS, Ph.D.). Prior to joining UDC, Dr. Richardson worked for the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, USDA-ARS, and Smithsonian Institution. He is a former Fulbright Scholar and is a prolific author of science and science education publications. Some of his broad research interests include finding practical solutions to conserve or restore species, natural communities, and ecosystem services while improving human health, promoting inclusion and social equity, and mitigating or adapting to climate change.


For a full CV of Dr.Richardson and his publications and accomplishments, click here.

Dr. Mamatha Hanumappa

Project Specialist of Center for Urban Research, Engagement and Scholarship


Dr. Mamatha Hanumappa is the project specialist for specialty and ethnic crops. She teaches courses in agroecology and climate change science and conducts research and community outreach in areas related to improving food and nutritional security in a changing climate. She coordinates UDC’s Professional Science Masters in Urban Agriculture program in addition to serving as the state coordinator for grant programs administered by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Dr. Hanumappa has research experience in a wide range of topics including urban agriculture, climate change adaptation, natural resource management, plant biotechnology, and bioinformatics. She was a recipient of Government of India fellowships throughout undergraduate and MS studies at the University of Agricultural Sciences, Bangalore, India. She received a Ph.D. in Horticulture from the University of Maryland, USA., worked as a postdoctoral fellow at prestigious laboratories in the US, Japan, and South Korea, and has provided consultancy services to several organizations including the World Bank. Dr. Hanumappa is a recipient of the prestigious Fulbright Global Scholar award to Kazakhstan for the academic year 2021-2022.


For a full CV of Dr. Hanumappa and her publications and accomplishments, click here.

Caitlin Arlotta

Research Associate of Center for Urban Research, Engagement and Scholarship

Caitlin Arlotta is a Research Associate in Urban Agriculture for the Center for Urban Research, Engagement, and Scholarship at the University of the District of Columbia (UDC). She is a UDC alum and is motivated by collaborative projects with tangible,local impacts.

Affiliated Students

Jonas Lee, MS in Civil Engineering

Michael G. Somersall, Ph.D. in Urban Leadership and Entrepreneurship

Dylan Mehri, PSM in Urban Agriculture

Assefa Tadesse, BS in Civil Engineering