Candis M. Hunter is a doctoral candidate in the Department of Environmental Health Sciences. In addition to her school duties, she also serves as an environmental health scientist at the CDC National Center for Environmental Health and as an environmental health officer in the U.S. Public Health Service Commissioned Corps. Her research interests are at the intersection of environmental justice, food security, evaluation and community engaged research.
As a backyard gardener and community garden volunteer, Hunter has personally experienced the health, social, economic and cultural benefits of growing food locally. Her grandparents and great-grandparents owned farms and gardens in Louisiana where they cultivated a variety of crops and livestock. Hunter’s family history, life experiences, and involvement in environmental justice-related research and programs such as the Navajo Birth Cohort Study; 2016 Flint, Michigan, Lead and Legionella Investigations; EPA EJ Community Leaders Academy; and HERCULES Exposome Research Center Community Outreach and Engagement Core (COEC), further solidified her research interests. These activities emphasized the importance of local community engagement in decision-making, advocacy and different types of research methods.