Dr. Rupa Marya

Associate Professor of Medicine at the University of California, San Francisco

Rupa Marya, M.D. is an Associate Professor of Medicine at the University of California, San Francisco, and the founder and Faculty Director of the Do No Harm Coalition, a 450+ member strong group of health workers who advocate for structural change to address the root causes of disease. At the invitation of Lakota health leaders, she is currently helping to set up the Mni Wiconi Health Clinic and Farm at Standing Rock in order to decolonize medicine and food. She is the composer and front-woman for the international touring group Rupa & the April Fishes, a project that uses music as a way to explore the intersection of society and disease. Her latest album Growing Upward is a testament to the resiliency of groups fighting climate change. She has performed regularly for crowds of 10,000 people in festivals across North America, Europe and Asia, and her remarks on race in medicine have been seen by over 12 million people on NowThis. Rupa was born to Punjabi parents in Ohlone Territory, now known as Mountain View, California and grew up between India, France and the US. When she married a regenerative organic farmer Benjamin Fahrer and became a mother, her understanding of human health took a deep dive into ecology. She is currently researching and writing a book with author Raj Patel, examining the health impacts of colonization on our bodies, our societies and the planet, offering systems-based solutions to the diseases that plague us. She is part of a team of farmers and researchers examining the impact of urban regenerative agriculture on health outcomes of oppressed communities, specifically mediated by the dynamic relationship between the human gut microbiome and the soil microbiome. At the invitation of the First Partner of California, Rupa is currently spearheading a statewide initiative in California to ban synthetic pesticides, herbicides and fertilizers in order to optimize soil health, human health and climate health--the Clean Food For All Initiative.