Daughters for Earth honors 50 of the brightest women working on climate change

Women are our lands’ natural caretakers but are still grossly marginalized from land ownership. To save our planet, this must change. Daughters for Earth is a campaign that aims to mobilize women of all ages throughout the world to take direct and concrete action to preserve our planet by supporting women-led efforts on the ground. They are committed to collaborating with impactful women’s organizations across our globe and to honor those women who boldly fight for a sustainable and just world. Below is a list of some of the brightest women working on climate change and related community issues.  If we missed any, let us know

1. Laura Alexa is a writer and founder of The Eco-Justice Project which intersects the issues of climate advocacy & education. She focuses on amplifying marginalized voices and campaigns for nature and the people fighting for it. 

2. Inger Andersen is a Danish economist, environmentalist, and was appointed the UN Under-Secretary-General and Executive Director United of the Nations Environment Programme. In her leadership position, she promotes the importance of nature conservation in efforts to achieve sustainable development.

3. Joji Cariño is an Ibaloi environment and development educator and researcher from the Cordilleras Highlands of the Philippines. She has expertise on Indigenous knowledge and traditional occupations, cultural and biological diversity, international standards on forests, water and energy, extractive industries, and corporate accountability.

4. Julie Becker is the newly appointed CEO of the Luxembourg Stock Exchange. Widely recognized as an innovative sustainable finance expert, she founded the United Nations Luxembourg Green Exchange (LGX) in 2016 to facilitate sustainable investment worldwide.

5. Marie Beecham is an educator, writer, and speaker with a passion for breaking walls and building bridges. She promotes unity and understanding in both the realms of racial and climate justice and seeks to solve both issues together. 

6. Black Girls Trekkin’ is a group, created by co-Founders, hiking enthusiast Tiffany, and biologist Michelle, on a mission to diversify the outdoors. It is a hiking group for women of color, empowering them to spend time outdoors, appreciate nature, and protect it.

7. Dr. Rose Brewer is a professor of African American and African Studies at the University of Minnesota and is an Environmental Justice Advocate for the state. She has published dozens of articles on environmental racism, the prison-industrial complex, black feminism, and other complex, intersectional issues. 

8. Patricia Ann Cameron is the Executive Director and Founder of Blackpackers, an organization addressing the gap in representation in the outdoors. Their mission is to provide those with economic vulnerability in Colorado with the opportunity to venture into nature and to connect them with volunteer opportunities and jobs that protect and preserve the wild. 

9. Majora Carter founded Sustainable South Bronx. This organization addresses economic and environmental issues throughout New York City through a combination of green jobs training, community greening programs, and social enterprise.

10. Amariyanna “Mari” Copeny, aka Little Miss Flint, is a 13-year-old activist, philanthropist, and “future president.” When the water crisis began in Flint, Michigan, Copeny used her voice to fight for the kids in her community and has since expanded her efforts to help those across the US dealing with toxic water.

11. Fernanda “Fe” Cortez is a Brazilian environmental activist and entrepreneur focusing on businesses that impact. She is the creator of Menos 1 Lixo (One Less Trash), known as the biggest Sustainability Educational platform in Brazil, which promotes environmental education.

12. Amy Duchelle is the Senior Scientist at the Climate Change, Energy & Low Carbon Development Team at the Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR) in Bogor, Indonesia. She leads the study which engages a dynamic network of research partners and diverse stakeholders to produce information, analysis, and the tools needed to protect tropical forests and enhance the rights and livelihoods of the local people.

13. Tanya Fields is the Executive Director & Founder of the Black Feminist Project. This group enriches the lives of, restores agency, justice, joy, and health to those often referred to as marginalized genders, empowering them to tap into their leadership abilities and to promote a just and sustainable world. 

14. Addie Fischer is a sustainable living enthusiast and creator of Old World New. This online home teaches how to make sustainable choices in all aspects of daily life, providing incites on shopping, cooking, waste management, and how to repurpose old items. 

15. Kari Fulton is an award-winning environmental and climate justice advocate, organizer, writer, cultural historian, and professional tour guide. Her website and social media channel, Check the Weather, provides news, events, recipes, and DIYs centering around environmental justice.

16. Rae Wynn-Grant is a large carnivore ecologist and an AAAS Research Fellow with the National Geographic Society. She is best known for her research of the human impact on the behavior of black bears in Montana and is an advocate for women and people of color in the sciences.

17. Isra Hirsi is an 18-year-old environmental activist out of Minneapolis, Minnesota. She co-founded and served as the co-Executive Director of the U.S. Youth Climate Strike and in 2020, she was named in Fortune's 40 Under 40 Government and Politics list.

18. Savonala “Savi” Horne is the Executive Director of the North Carolina Association of Black Lawyers Land Loss Prevention Project, a non-profit law firm. It offers legal representation of clients, community economic development, and professional outreach in the effort to promote wealth, land preservation, and rural livelihoods.

19. Hindou Oubarou Ibrahim is an environmental activist, geographer, and the Founder and Coordinator of the Association of Peul Women and Autochthonous Peoples of Chad. The organization focuses on promoting the rights of girls and women in the Mbororo community and inspiring leadership and advocacy in environmental protection.

20. Jhánneu is a content creator, blogger, and creator of Intentional Low Impact Living. This lifestyle brand showcases how low waste living can be inclusive and accessible to all.

21. Dr. Ayana Johnson is a marine biologist, policy expert, writer, and co-Founder of the Urban Ocean Lab. This organization implements science-based and forward-thinking strategies to ensure environmental justice for coastal communities and serves as a laboratory for state and federal initiatives.

22. Shirley Malcomb is a scientist and the Head of Education and Human Resources Programs of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). She leads programs in education, activities for underrepresented groups, and public understanding of science and technology.

23. Diandra Marizet is an advocate for people and the planet, co-Founding the non-profit organization Intersectional Environmentalist. This resource hub provides information and action steps to support intersectional environmentalism and to address oppressive systems within the environmental movement.

24. Sophie Maxwell is an activist and served three terms on the San Francisco Board of Supervisors. During her tenure, she worked for a more equitable distribution of public resources and advocated for environmental justice, clean energy, and children's health and educational programs.

25. Aditi Mayer is a journalist, labor rights activist, and speaker on sustainability & social justice. Using her platform, she pushes for a more sustainable and decolonized fashion world. 

26. Jennifer Morris is the former President of Conservation International. She created and implemented cutting-edge initiatives working with Indigenous communities and multinational corporations to protect more than 80 million hectares around the world for the well-being of humanity.

27. Vanessa Nakate is a climate activist from Uganda and founder of the Rise up Climate Movement, which aims to amplify the voices of activists from Africa. Her work includes raising awareness of the danger of climate change, its causes, and impacts. 

28. Corina Newsome is a former zookeeper, avian conservationist, and the current Community Engagement Manager at Georgia Audubon. Having experienced the hurdles faced by Black, Indigenous, and Peoples of Color in wildlife conservation, her mission is to center the perspectives and leadership of historically marginalized communities in wildlife conservation, environmental education, and exploration of the natural world

29. Constance Okollet leads the Osukuru United Women Network (OWN) that seeks to empower and educate women in the Tororo District in Eastern Uganda. It provides community education on climate change, tree planting with seedlings and nursery beds, and the manufacturing of Lorena cookstoves and biomass briquettes. 

30. Autumn Peltier is an Anishinaabe Indigenous clean water advocate from the Wiikwemkoong First Nation on Manitoulin Island, Ontario, Canada. In 2018, at the age of thirteen, Peltier addressed world leaders at the UN General Assembly on the issue of water protection and is now the Chief Water Protector for the Anishnabek Nation.

31. Audrey Peterman co-authored the book, Legacy on the Land: A Black Couple Discovers Our National Inheritance and Tells Why Every American Should Care with her husband, Frank Peterman. The book tracks their journey through the National Park System and advocates for natural resource protection, climate change awareness, and connecting these issues to the public.

32. Lina Pohl is a representative of the Food and Agriculture Organization in Mexico. The United Nations General Assembly adopted her proposed U.N. Decade on Ecosystem Restoration (2021–2030), dedicating 10 years and a global summoning of financial, scientific, policy, and on-the-ground efforts to bring degraded ecosystems back to life.

33. Akiima Price has worked with numerous environmental organizations throughout the United States, including The New York Restoration Project and the North American Association for Environmental Education. Through these organizations, she creates and implements innovative programs that build bridges into low-income communities.

34. Jennifer Pryce is the President and CEO of Calvert Impact Capital. Over the past decade, she has shaped the strategic direction of Calvert Impact Capital to focus on innovation, sustainability, and scale. 

35. Jyotsna “Jo” Puri is the Director of the International Fund for Agricultural Development. She is also the head evaluator for the world’s largest climate fund, the Green Climate Fund which supports developing countries in lowering emissions and finding climate-resilient solutions.

36. LaDonna Redmond launched the Campaign for Food Justice Now (CFJN) in 2013. It is an organization that “applies race, class and gender” to the food system, confronting underlying themes of social justice within the food movement through community-based solutions, promoting social change, and engaged advocacy.

37. Marjorie Richard is an environmental activist and the first African American to win the Goldman Environmental Prize. She secured an agreement from Shell Chemical to reduce its emissions by 30%, contribute $5 million to a community development fund, and finance the relocation of her Old Diamond neighbors in Louisiana after they had degraded the neighborhood and caused health problems with their oil plant. 

38. Brittany Sierra is the Founder and CEO of the Sustainable Fashion Forum in Portland, Oregon. It is a global community and online platform for conscious fashion enthusiasts looking to make a tangible impact in their communities and beyond.

39. Nikki Silvestri is the Founder and CEO of Soil and Shadow, LLC. that created the Soil and Shadow Sustainable Brown Girl Podcast. In addition to raising awareness and discussing climate issues, the group designs projects that regenerate economic systems, human relationships, and ecosystems. 

40. Dr. Dorceta Taylor is the Professor of Environmental Sociology at the University of Michigan and the Coordinator of its Environmental Justice Field of Studies. Her research includes urban agriculture, food access, and food insecurity and in 2020, the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP) identified her as one of the six people continuing Dr. Martin Luther King’s legacy through her work.

41. Leah Thomas is a writer and the Founder of Intersectional Environmentalism. This media hub aims to advocate for environmental justice and inclusivity within environmental education and its movements.

42. Alexandria Villaseñor is a 14-year-old climate activist and Founder of Earth Uprising. Inspired by Greta Thunberg, she began her own solo weekly school strike for the climate in front of United Nations Headquarters on December 14, 2018, and has been on strike ever since.

43. Dr. Beverly L. Wright is an environmental justice scholar, advocate, author, civic leader, and is the Founder and Executive Director of the Deep South Center for Environmental Justice. The Center addresses environmental and health inequities along the Louisiana Mississippi River Chemical Corridor and the Gulf Coast Region that provides education, health, and safety training, and job placement for residents in these climate-impacted communities.

44. Janene Yazzie is a community activist and the co-Founder and CEO of Sixth World Solutions which works with Dine (Navajo) communities to develop projects, programs, and policies that promote sustainability, environmental justice, and self-governance. She also co-founded the first Navajo Nation community-led watershed planning program through youth engagement and community building.

45. Sônia Guajajara is a Brazilian indigenous activist, environmentalist, and politician. She regularly advocates for Indigenous rights at U.N. conventions, and in 2018, became the first Indigenous person to run for federal executive office in Brazil.

46. Sumarni Laman, a community coordinator for Youth Act Indonesia, a movement of Kalimantan’s Indigenous youth to take action against the region’s forest fires. She leads its subprogram The Heartland Project, which raises awareness about deforestation across the archipelago and counters its effects through tree planting.

47. Jonna Mazet is an American epidemiologist and Executive Director of the University of California, Davis One Health Institute. Recognized for her innovative and holistic approach to emerging environmental and global health threats, she is an elected member of the prestigious U.S. National Academy of Medicine.

48. Vanessa Nakate began Uganda’s Fridays for Future movement and launched a fundraising campaign to save the Congo’s rainforest from its ongoing deforestation. She is also helping transition schools in her home country to sustainable energy through her Green Schools Project initiative

49. Yvonne Aki-Sawyerr has led campaigns against blood diamonds, co-founded a charity to support disadvantaged youth in the midst of her country’s civil war, and served as a director at the National Ebola Response Centre during the pandemic’s deadly outbreak before being elected to her mayoral position of Freetown, Sierra Leone in 2018.

50. Patricia Zurita, Chief Executive Officer of BirdLife International, the world’s largest nature conservation partnership, bringing together over 120 organizations worldwide to conserve birds, their habitats, and global biodiversity, working with people towards sustainability in the use of natural resources.

These 50 women are just a sample of the many women around the world protecting nature and promoting a more sustainable way of life. Research has shown that women are disproportionately impacted by climate change, but that they are also key to solving the crisis. By empowering women and funding their efforts, both gender inequity and the climate crisis can be resolved. More awareness of these women and those like them is the first step in the global movement for change. The health and vitality of our planet depend on it.