Pages tagged "class 3"

Matthew Petty

Fayetteville, AR - Matthew Petty is an entrepreneur, blogger, and political activist from Fayetteville, Arkansas. Matthew's current projects include the integration of social media and government and building a grassroots campaign for green jobs in Arkansas. Matthew is the founder of the Social Sustenance Organization, a social enterprise helping progressive initiatives succeed. Currently, Matthew serves on the City Council in his hometown, where he was elected on an "Economy and Ecology" platform. (Connect with Matthew at

Marcus Penny

Atlanta, GA - Marcus Penny, a native Californian, is currently studying Psychology at Morehouse College in Atlanta, Georgia. Recently Marcus has become active with several different local, national, and international initiatives involving the promotion of sustainable living and environmental justice. These initiatives have helped to lay the foundation upon which the two organizations he helped to found (S.E.E.E.D and L.R.A.M) are built. Alongside a strong team of students and recent graduates, Marcus plans on rising awareness on environmental justice issues and how they affect underrepresented communities.


Recipient of the Fellows Fund micro-grant award for: 
The Urban Gardening & Resiliency Oasis (U.G.R.O.) Program
Atlanta, GA- Georgia Conservancy

The Urban Gardening and Resiliency Oasis (U.G.R.O.) aspires to directly address the issue of food deserts in Atlanta by offering an opportunity to learn about agricultural development in the urban context. In addition this program is designed to work with local schools and community organizations to create a student-focused program that utilized environmental sustainability as a means to accelerate mentor enrichment and student achievement. The initiative aims to create a Community learning center that focuses on Urban Agriculture for the residents of the Oakland Community in West Atlanta, in partnership with 100 Black Men of Atlanta and the BEST Academy and the Outdoor Alliance for Kids to 1) bring outdoor exposure and education to students in elementary school, 2) Provide food for the Atlanta Food Bank to be given to Atlanta Homeless, 3) Further the advancement of the Outdoor Activity Center as a location for outdoor education, 4) Continue the mentorship pipeline provided by AMPS-ATLANTA, 5) Continue to educate and train high school and college students on several different aspects of developing a sustainable economy through community service based leadership exercises in the AMPS-ATLANTA Program, 6) Further develop leadership skills as community organizer but helping to empower individuals to provide for one of their basic human needs, 7) Create and Decorate 5 Rain Barrels. 

Harish I Patel

Chicago, IL - Harish I Patel, coordinator of University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) Social Justice Initiative, is an experienced community organizer focused on youth, community and economic development issues and electoral engagement. Harish previously worked as the coordinator of public programming at the UIC Jane Addams Hull-House Museum, and also as a Coalition Organizer at the Southwest Youth Collaborative on Chicago‚Äôs South Side. He serves on the board of advisers of In These Times magazine and served as an instructor at UIC for the undergraduate course, Youth Engagement in a Globalized World. He is also a founder of Project FOCUS, an international community development organization working in Uganda.

Meagan Mullens

Atlanta, GA - Meagan M. Mullens, alumna of Spelman College and an aspiring lawyer, founded Green Complex, a non-profit organization focused on ensuring the prosperity of minority communities in South Florida. Through various initiatives, programs, and community partnerships Green Complex encourages participation and supports development in the following areas: Outdoor Recreation, Academic Excellence, Cultural Awareness and Tolerance, Workforce Preparedness, and Environmental Sustainability and Conservation.

Jayme Montgomery-Baker

Milwaukee, WI - Jayme Montgomery-Baker is the State Director for the WI League of Young Voters/Campaign Against Violence. Our mission is to agitate, educate and organize young folks to take a proactive stance against interpersonal violence by making them players in the political game. By focusing on art and hand on experiences, we encourage people to become leaders in their own community and work with their neighbors and elected officials to find solutions to the problems that plague them the most. The League recently started the Making Milwaukee Green Coalition table, an intergenerational group whose goal is to connect the dots between the resources that are available and the folks who need them the most.

Isaac Medrano

Pueblo, CO - Isaac Medrano is the Colorado State Director for Democracia USA and Democracia Ahora. He was born in San Francisco, CA. His family emigrated from Managua, Nicaragua during the 1970's. He was the first in his family to attend college and graduated from the University of San Francisco in 2001. Visiting Nicaragua for the first time in 2003 with Witness for Peace propelled him to seek a career in helping the needy. In 2004 he began his political career as a field organizer for Wisconsin Victory 2004. In 2005 he became the volunteer coordinator for MassEquality in Boston, MA protecting equal marriage rights in the Commonwealth. In September 2008 he joined Democracia USA as the Colorado State Director after working as a Regional Field Director for Senator Hillary Clinton's Presidential Primary Campaign. Lastly, Isaac seeks his inspiration in the words and life of Robert Kennedy: "Only those who dare to fail greatly can ever achieve greatly."

Valerie Martinez

Twin Cities, MN - Valerie is a Mexican, Cree, Apache, Ojibwe woman from the twin cities of Minneapolis, Minnesota who has been organizing around racial and social justice for indigenous people for the last ten years of her life. She has been on the Little Earth of United Tribes board since 2001, assisting in the development and implementation of programs that serve American Indian children and their families. Currently she is serving as a liaison to representatives from Minnesota’s indigenous communities. Valerie organized a Renewable Energy Training and community event with Winona LaDuke at Little Earth of United Tribes. She also recruited and coordinated Indigenous People’s Green Jobs Task Force, which is a statewide green jobs initiative to ensure participation and inclusion of indigenous communities in renewable energy opportunities in this new, emerging green economy. 

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Eric Mathis

Williamson, WV - J. Eric Mathis has been at the forefront of initiatives to bridge the gap between the fossil fuel and renewable energy industries through the development and implementation of innovative finance and business models.  These models are designed to be beneficial to both industries, creating mutually productive economic linkages between the fossil fuel and renewable industries and most importantly, the surrounding communities. As a board member of the Williamson Redevelopment Authority, Mr. Mathis is helping to develop a comprehensive project entitled Sustainable Williamson which emphasizes healthy lifestyles as a key component to economic revitalization. Moreover, and through the guidance of The Write Choice Network, he presently engages his fellow board members of the Williamson Health and Wellness Center to actively integrate an entrepreneurship program which is designed to encourage the emergence of a rural health enterprise zone. Building from his past and present experiences, his most recent endeavor is participating in the creation and implementation of the Central Appalachian Sustainable Economies network which is an interactive regional network of innovators cultivating new ideas and resources in central Appalachia to grow healthy communities. He is a proud Green for All fellow, a 2010 recipient of Interstate Renewable Energy Council's Innovation Award for community renewables and a 2012 White House Champion of Change for Green our Cities and Towns. Eric graduated from Appalachian State University in 2007 and is presently finishing his master thesis in history. 

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Juan D. Martinez

Los Angeles, CA - A proud product of south central Los Angeles, Juan D. Martinez is the national Natural Leaders Network coordinator for the Children & Nature Network. His passion to empower individuals and youth led him to direct Sierra Club’s first environmental justice youth leadership academy in Los Angeles. In 2009, Juan introduced Department of Interior's Ken Salazar at Powershift in Washington, DC, the largest youth gathering on climate change, and he was invited by the White House to attend the National Forum on Clean Energy Economy. A keynote speaker at the 2010 Outdoor Retailers Winter Show in Salt Lake City, Utah, Juan received a standing ovation following his presentation. In 2006, Juan was a delegate to the Latino Congreso, the largest gathering of Latino key figures in the U.S. and he is included in “Hispanics Living Green.” Publication of the book is being celebrated in March 2010 with a Congressional reception in Washington, DC. A student at the California State University Los Angeles, he is a recipient of Congresswoman Hilda Solis’ Environmental Youth Leadership Award and “Looking to the Future” award from the Breaking the Color Barriers conference, the largest conference on people of color in the great outdoors. Juan received a “Green for All” 2009 fellowship; and is on the national executive committee for the Sierra Student Coalition. Juan is a spokesperson for the Sierra Clubs’ Building Bridges to the Outdoors initiative, which works to connect all youth with nature. He dedicates his energy and free time on grassroots campaigns that vary from health care, housing discrimination, to creating garden space in the city of L.A. 

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Leia Lewis Henderson

Shreveport, LA – Leia Lewis Henderson ( is a cultural arts worker, organizer, artist, educator, and mother who has been advancing nonprofit and community-based organizations for more than a decade. Leia is the Founding Director of Sankofa Vision, Inc. (, a nonprofit that celebrates and cultivates the art, culture, and community life of people of African descent. SVI’s central work is Sankofa Gardens, an organic community garden and learning campus that supports low-income families to achieve self-sufficiency and widely attracts good, diverse people. Leia is a dedicated classroom teacher, completing a M.A. in Teaching/ Elementary Education at Centenary College of Louisiana. She has earned a B.A. in Drama and Communications and M.A. in Arts Administration from University of New Orleans. A global student and peaceful warrior, Leia Lewis Henderson’s blessed family heritage is deeply rooted in the farmland of North Louisiana.

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