Rachel Brahinsky

Assistant Professor

Rachel Brahinsky serves as Faculty Director of the Graduate Programs in Urban Affairs and Public Affairs. She also teaches in the undergraduate Urban Studies program. She earned her Ph.D from the University of California, Berkeley. Her research and teaching center around the challenges of race and inequality in the context of rapidly changing American cities. Her current projects are focused on the San Francisco Bay Area.  


Sandy Brown

Assistant Professor

Sandy Brown received her PhD in Geography from the University of California at Berkeley, where her research focused on food systems and farm labor politics. She has also worked as a community-labor organizer, legislative advocate, and coordinator for local and state electoral campaigns in California. For more information on Dr. Brown’s publications and research click on her name above to visit her profile.


Corey Cook

Associate Professor

Corey Cook earned his Ph.D. in Political Science from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. His doctoral dissertation considers the impact of race and gender on political representation and explores the contemporary significance of identity politics. His current research focuses on election results and political geography in California.


Ed Harrington


Ed Harrington brings a wealth of practical experience to the program, where he teaches our Urban Public Finance class. His background includes serving as Controller for the City and County of San Francisco for about 17 years, working with a range of public leaders from 1991 to 2008. He was also the General Manager of the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission. He has been active in many governmental and finance groups and currently is a board member and Treasurer of both Greenpeace International and SPUR, a Bay Area urban policy think-tank and civic group.


Kevin Hickey


Kevin Hickey serves as the Senior Manager of High School and Bridge Programs at Jewish Vocational Service, where he leads job placement and public policy advocacy efforts on behalf of children, youth, families, and the unemployed. Kevin holds appointments on various public advisory councils and is active with Coleman Advocates for Children and Youth. Kevin Hickey was awarded the USF 2013-2014 Distinguished Adjunct Teaching Award.

Tel:(415) 422-4379

Keally McBride


Dr. Keally McBride received her graduate degrees at University of California at Berkeley with a focus in political theory. She has published two books, Collective Dreams: Political Imagination and Community, and Punishment and Political Order. Her current research is on political theories of decolonization; investigating how ideas of liberation can change our views on global politics and also our understanding of power and social change.


Diana Negrin


Diana Negrín da Silva is a native of Guadalajara, Jalisco and the San Francisco Bay Area. Negrín received her doctorate from the Department of Geography at the University of California, Berkeley and serves as the President of the Board of Directors for the Wixárika Research Center, a non-profit organization that supports the study and defense of Wixárika culture and territory. Her research examines the production of racial discourses and practices in Mexico and the Western Hemisphere more widely, and builds on debates concerning migration, identity formation, urbanization, activism, and the construction of place.


Paul Craig Okamoto

Adjunct Professor

Paul Okamoto has committed his professional architectural career to designing buildings and neighborhoods in ways that optimize environmental and social conditions. With his San Francisco-based firm Okamoto Saijo Architecture, he designs affordable housing developments, community centers, custom passive solar residences, community-based neighborhood plans, all with an emphasis on sustainable design.

Tel:(415) 422-5790

Tanu Sankalia

Associate Professor

Tanu Sankalia received his Master of Urban Design from the University of California, Berkeley. Prof. Sankalia's research interests cover areas of architecture and urbanism from the local context of the San Francisco Bay Area to the global perspective of India. Current projects include a co-edited volume of essays, Urban Reinventions: San Francisco's Treasure Island, which examines future plans for Treasure Island in the context of global, large-scale land development, and against the backdrop of the island's seventy-year urban history.


James Taylor


James Lance Taylor received his graduate degrees at the University of Southern California (USC). His teaching and research scholarly interests are in religion and politics in the United States, race and ethnic politics, African American political history, social movements, political ideology, law and public policy, and the U.S. Presidency. He is author of the book Black Nationalism in the United States: From Malcolm X to Barack Obama.


Egon Terplan


Egon Terplan serves as the Regional Planning Director at SPUR, a Bay Area urban policy think tank and civic group. His work focuses on the intersections of economic development, regional planning, workforce preparation, transportation and governance, and has published on topics ranging from the future of the corporate campus to the decline in middle-wage jobs to the emergence of a Northern California mega-region. He is on various regional boards and committees, including San Francisco’s Workforce Investment Board. He has managed regional economic development strategies for clients throughout the world, and has worked for labor unions as an organizer and researcher.

Tel:(415) 422-6087

Seth Wachtel

A + A Department Chair, Associate Professor

Seth Wachtel is the Chair of the Dept. of Art + Architecture and is Co-Director of the Garden Project Living-Learning Community at the University of San Francisco.


Calvin Welch


Calvin received his M.A. in Political Science from Makerere University College, Kampala, Uganda. Welch is the Program Director of the San Francisco Information Clearinghouse, a nonprofit, community-based technical assistance and advocacy organization specializing in affordable housing, community development, and land-use planning issues.