Steven C. Pitts
Emeritus Associate Chair
Steven Pitts is the creator and host of Black Work Talk, a podcast that looks at the struggles to build Black workers’ collective power and to challenge racial capitalism.
Steven recently retired from the UC Berkeley Labor Center where for 19 years he focused on leadership development and Black worker issues. While there, he produced several reports on Black workers and job quality; launched a Black union leadership school; and co-founded the National Black Worker Center – a network of Black worker centers around the country. (Learn more about Steven's work at the Labor Center.)
Prior to coming to the Labor Center, Steven taught economics for 15 years at the Houston Community College. Before teaching at the community college, he worked in a machine shop in Houston (Hughes Tool Company) for eight years and was active in the United Steelworkers of America local trying to build a stronger and more democratic union.
Meet our Students
Riya Desai is a first-year medical student in the UC Berkeley-UCSF Joint Medical Program. Before entering medical school, she worked at the UCSF Department of Epidemiology and Biostatics on projects examining the impacts of place-based drivers of health disparities. She currently organizes with the #StopSanQuentinOutbreakCoalition and has helped develop and organize a public health working group within the coalition to demand large scale releases of incarcerated people.
Abby Lawlor is a second year JD candidate at Berkeley Law studying labor and employment law. Abby is working with Senior Policy Fellow Jane McAlevey conducting research related to big and open collective bargaining. She came to UC Berkeley after a decade of worker and political organizing and strategic research with UNITE HERE.
Adrian Leong is a first-year Master of Public Policy Student at UC Berkeley's Goldman School of Public Policy. He is on the Low Wage Work team at the Labor Center. Previously, he worked as a Community Organizer with the Chinese Progressive Association in San Francisco.
Andrew is a PhD candidate in sociology at UC Berkeley. His dissertation analyzes the political economy of climate change in California. He’s happy to be working at the Labor Center with Pamela Egan developing California's High Road Training Partnerships.
Karina is a Graduate Student Researcher with the High-Road Training Partnerships Project under the Labor-Management Partnerships Program. She is a 2nd year Master of Public Policy student at the Goldman School of Public Policy. Prior to joining the Labor Center team, Karina interned at the California Energy Commission where she helped staff incorporate energy equity into their work. She also has four years of work experience helping advocates across the state push for stronger public health local ordinances.
Mansi Kathuria is a second-year Master of Public Policy student at UC Berkeley's Goldman School of Public Policy. At the Labor Center, they are working on the High Road Training Partnership Program with the Labor Management Partnerships team. Before coming to Berkeley, Mansi spent seven years working as a community and labor organizer including with National Nurses United and Asian Americans Advancing Justice Chicago.
Visiting Fellows and Scholars
Jon Hiatt is a union lawyer, who currently serves as Of Counsel to Solidarity Center, based in Washington D.C., while also a Visiting Scholar at the UC Berkeley Labor Center. Previously, Hiatt was General Counsel of the Service Employees International Union from 1987-1996, General Counsel of the AFL-CIO from 1996-2009, and then Chief of Staff and Executive Assistant to AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka from 2009-2017.
John Logan, Ph.D., U.S. labor history, University of California, Davis, is an expert on the anti-union industry and anti-union legislation in the U.S., and comparative labor issues, particularly how multinational companies treat employees and unions differently in the U.S. compared to European countries.
Katie Quan is a senior fellow at the UC Berkeley Center for Labor Research and Education. Formerly chair and associate chair of the Labor Center, she retired in 2016, but continues to work at the center on special projects involving research on global labor strategies and executive education for union leaders. In 2010 she co-founded the International Center for Joint Labor Research at Sun Yat-sen University in Guangzhou, China, and was its co-director for four years. In 2014 she received a Fulbright grant to study the apparel supply chain in China at Peking University. Prior to joining the staff of the Labor Center in 1998, Katie Quan was a seamstress, organizer, and international vice-president with the International Ladies’ Garment Workers’ Union, and its successor, UNITE. Learn more about Katie's career and her research.