Consider naming a fellowship

CSPI’s expert team of scientists, attorneys, advocates has trained generations of high-achieving emerging professionals who have gone on to be effective advocates in the food movement.

Together, we can enable CSPI to cultivate the nation’s next food watchdogs, science-defenders, and nutrition and food-safety leaders.

To discuss, please contact Jane Welna: or 202-777-8388

The Mark & Sushma Palmer Public Health Advocacy Fellowship

Dr. Sushma Palmer created this fellowship to promote nutrition, public health, and citizen advocacy. The fellowship honors the legacy of Mark and Sushma Palmer in supporting the translation of science into public health policy and practice.

Thank you to Dr. Sushma Palmer for her generous commitment of $400,000 to create the Mark & Sushma Palmer Public Health Advocacy Fellowship at CSPI. For eight years, CSPI is hosting advocates who will gain valuable skills while promoting nutrition, public health, and citizen advocacy.

CSPI’s current fellow is Catherine Cochran. Catherine recently earned a Master of Arts in Food Systems and Policy from New York University. She served as a food policy program assistant for the NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, and as a food systems intern for Community Health Improvement Partners. Catherine earned her undergraduate degree in Political Science from San Diego State University.

Catherine is leading CSPI’s advocacy to strengthen the Dietary Guidelines for Americans and increase access to healthier beverages at public universities.

Fellowship funder Sushma Palmer with 2022 Palmer fellow Catherine Cochran

Mark and Sushma Palmer Public Health Advocacy Fellow

Palmer Fellow Catherine Cochran (right) with Sushma Palmer

About Dr. Sushma Palmer

Dr. Palmer served as Director of the US National Academy of Sciences' Food and Nutrition Board and, prior to that, Project Director with its Board on Toxicology and Environmental Health Hazards. She is the founder of the Center for Communications, Health, and the Environment (CECHE), a nonprofit dedicated to assisting under-served communities in the US and developing nations by initiating, coordinating and supporting programs to improve health and alleviate the adverse health effects of environmental pollution. Dr. Palmer has 30 years of international experience including research, teaching, and program design and management in the United States, India, Central and Eastern Europe, Russia, and Ukraine. She has served on CSPI’s board of directors since 2001.