Philadelphia, PA - Joe Hill is an 18 year-old junior at Georgetown University studying Political Economy. He is also the Chairman of the Philadelphia Youth Commission, which was established last year to advocate on behalf of youth between the ages of 13-23. In this capacity, Joe has been largely responsible for developing the strategic vision of the Commission, which includes connecting Youth in the city's many Vocational and Technical schools to Green Job Training opportunities. Joe is also working with the School District of Philadelphia to launch the city's first Green Vocational School, teaching the skills necessary to make Philadelphia the “greenest city in America.” Prior to his election as Chairman of the Youth Commission, Joe served as the Northeast Regional Director for Students for Barack Obama.
Milwaukee, WI - Shahn Hayes is the Communication Director for the WI League of Young Voters/Campaign Against Violence. Our mission is to educate and organize young adults to take a proactive stance against violence and encouraging them to be engaged in the voting process. 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 resources that are available and the folks that need them the most. Blog Entry
Cleveland, OH - David L. Heard Jr. is a National Urban Fellow serving the Mayor’s Office of the City of Cleveland, Ohio in the Office of Sustainability as the Outreach Manager. He is a graduate student of Bernard Baruch College in New York City with a Masters of Public Administration. David is a former social studies educator from Indianapolis, Indiana. As a fellow, he now facilitates sustainability discussions with The Stokes Academy, MC2 STEM High School and Cleveland Job Corps Academy. He provides green education for 9,000 city employees, manages the Cleveland Conserves Campaign and provides insight for the Mayor’s initiatives to green city government. Mr. Heard is a member of Great Lakes Urban Exchange (GLUE), National Forum for Black Public Administrators (NFBPA) and works with school to work programming for Living Cities and the Magnet/WIRE-Net Educators/Manufacturers Team.
Trenton, NJ - Duncan Harrison, Jr. displays his commitment to his community - Trenton, New Jersey - by being been involved in a number of community service activities. He has mobilized the community to produce solutions for issues affecting the quality of life for Trenton residents. Duncan has held neighborhood clean-ups and community forums against violence. Furthermore, he has given lectures to emerging youth leaders as well as at-risk youth. He received his Bachelor of Arts in Sociology with a focus on Criminal Justice from Delaware State University. While at Delaware State University he received the 2007 Presidential Leadership Award. He is currently working on his Master’s degree in Public Administration at Bernard M. Baruch College, School of Public Affairs. Duncan is currently a Fellow with the Northwest Area Foundation through the National Urban Fellows, Inc.
Atlanta, GA - Cozell T. Harris is a nationally recognized fatherhood consultant and facilitator through his work with the Annie E. Casey Foundation, where he works with re-entry and juvenile probation programs for young fathers. His national work has been recognized by the Administration of Children and Families with Head Start programming in fatherhood. He also works in the Atlanta community with The Center for Working Families, Inc.; whereby his focus is on community development, fatherhood initiatives, and the green collar economy. He is a graduate from Mercer University, Atlanta, GA with a degree in Organizational Development, and he is the recipient of numerous leadership awards.
Milton, MA - Jared Harrell is a student athlete at the University of Maryland in College Park. He is an African American Studies major who focuses on Green solutions for inner-city communities. Starting this summer Jared will be working in local DC jails teaching inmates about the green economy and how it will up lift their neighborhoods. He has always been interested in the environment and looks forward to being a leader in promoting, implementing and using Green solutions in underprivileged communities.
New York, NY - Brigitte Griswold is the Director of Youth Programs for the Nature Conservancy of New York, where she oversees the Conservancy’s first regional urban youth employment initiative. Since 2003, she has increased program capacity and funding to provide twice as many underserved youth with green jobs in nine states across the Northeast. Brigitte serves on the Diversity Councils of the Land Trust Alliance and The North American Association for Environmental Education, and is a member of the Diversity Steering Committee of the Nature Conservancy. She leads the Education Advisory Panel of The National Forum on Children & Nature and is a Regional Leader of the Children and Nature Network. Brigitte graduated from the University of South Carolina with a degree in English literature and lives in Brooklyn, New York.
New Bedford, MA - Ben Gilbarg is the director of 3rd EyE Unlimited, a film/video producer, and a conscious Hip Hop artist from New Bedford, MA. Over the last ten years, he has led a powerful movement of youth empowerment. He has helped change the lives of hundreds of youth, providing skills-based mentoring and leadership development. These youth have worked with Ben to produce more than seventy events, including nine annual 3rd EyE Open Festivals attracting 5,000 plus people annually. Ben has been at the cutting edge in communicating green through hip-hop and is the producer of the Green Anthem music video. Ben is the lead producer of the TV network, “Put Out the Word!” which airs in more than twenty million homes worldwide.
Seattle, WA - An entrepreneur and educator, Wyking Allah (born Kwame Garrett) is the founder and Chief Executive of Remix Marketing & Communications, LLC, a multi service communications firm specializing in youth and cultural program development, niche marketing strategy and event planning. A dedicated community servant, he is the founder of the Seattle Hip-Hop Summit Action Network Youth Council and co-founder of the United For Youth Coalition and the UmojaFest P.E.A.C.E. Center in Seattle, WA. He is also director of the Umoja Fest African American Festival & Parade and a founding director of the African American Heritage Museum and Cultural Center in Seattle, WA. At the age of 21 he was runner up for state representative in his home state of Washington and in 2008 Wyking was awarded the Martin Luther King County Executive Pioneer Award for Excellence in Hip-Hop for outstanding service to the community.
Ashara Ekundayo is an Oakland-based cultural worker of the urban landscape and has served as catalyst, curator, educator, and producer for more than 20 years. Through her company BluBlak Media Consulting, she has worked with local and national organizations to build capacity for increased community engagement through the uses of creative practice, exhibition, strategic communications design and project management. She is a serial entrepreneur and activist committed to social change, and has supported individuals and grassroots companies in the redesign of their brand strategy through permaculture principles and is an expert at negotiating collaborative space within the intersections of the public and private sector. In 2009 Ashara was selected by the Ashoka Foundation and the City of Denver in the U.S. launch of the “Change Your City” Campaign as a social innovator “stimulating the green economy” being manifested through her local programmatic work in food justice and green jobs design, and has held Fellowship positions with the U.S. Dept of State Bureau of Educational & Cultural Affairs and Green For All. She currently serves as the Marketing Director for the San Francisco Green Festival, is a member of the "Future of Soul Think Tank" at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, is the STEAM Curriculum Developer for BlackGirlsCode.com, and is a burgeoning food blogger at "Grits & Greens." Ashara is a member of the Founding Team for Hub Oakland opening in Fall 2013. Follow her on Twitter @BluBlakwomyn Blog Entry 1 | Blog Entry 2