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Honoring Black Environmental Leaders

Black women have long been integral to environmental history, yet their stories often remain untold. From Hazel M. Johnson's pioneering work in environmental justice to Marie Harrison's advocacy for community health and Marjorie Richard's groundbreaking battle against toxic emissions, Black women have been trailblazers in environmental leadership. Today, they continue to shape the future of environmentalism across various fields from ecology to sustainable fashion. Here are five remarkable leaders you should know about:

Ebony Twilley Martin, a visionary strategist, is the Executive Director Greenpeace, the largest national legacy environmental organization. Ebony is a champion for advancing racial and environmental justice.

Wanjiku “Wawa” Gatheru is the founder of Black Girl Environmentalist, dedicated to empowering Black girls, women and non-binary people across the climate sector. She is the first Black person in history to receive the prestigious Rhodes, Truman and Udall scholarships for her environmental scholarship and activism.

Maya Penn, launched the sustainable fashion brand Maya’s Ideas at age 8. Now 15 years later her work is influencing the entire fashion world

Na'Taki Osborne Jelks is the co-founder of the National Wildlife Federation’s Atlanta Earth Tomorrow Program, a multicultural program that engages urban youth in environmental and community-focused causes. She is also an Assistant Professor at Spelman College, and the board chairperson of the West Atlanta Watershed Alliance.

Gloria Walton is an award-winning organizer, writer, and President & CEO of The Solutions Project, an organization that funds and amplifies climate justice solutions created by frontline community builders.

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