Ava-Gay Blagrove is an Environmental Specialist with the NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene. In this role she manages and supports Homeland Security funded projects to develop and enhance agency and citywide environmental response, preparedness and recovery plans. Her primary focus is on biological hazards, providing technical support and coordinating trainings, workshops and exercises for agencies involved in environmental sampling, and mitigation of risks posed by biological threat agents. In addition to this she also provides support for radiological and all- hazards response and planning. Prior to working with the NYC Dept of Health she was a Research Assistant in the EPA Region 3 Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assurance, researching public health indicators for environmental justice assessments. She then went on to become an Outreach & Marketing Associate for the EPA Region 2 Performance Track Program. While an undergrad student she interned with the Center for Environmental Communications at Rutgers University, investigating communication strategies utilized during the 2001 anthrax attacks.
Ava-Gay is passionate about increasing minority involvement and leadership in the environmental sector. This led her to collaborate with ELP Senior Fellows Marcelo Bonta, Founder and Executive Director of the Center for Diversity and Environment, and Emily Enderle, Chief Environmental Policy Advisor in the US Senate, to seek funding to expand the Environmental Professionals of Color (EPOC) network in Washington DC and New York City. They were awarded an ELP Innovation Grant to carry out this effort. Ava-Gay currently co-chairs EPOC-NYC, coordinating networking events and leading program development to increase membership and create opportunities for mentorship, leadership and professional development and community involvement.
Ava-Gay earned her Bachelor of Science degree from the Rutgers University School of Environmental & Biological Sciences and her Master of Science in Environmental Technology from the New York Institute of Technology.