EE 30 Under 30 Alumni

Since 2016, NAAEE's EE 30 Under 30 program has recognized 210 individuals from 42 countries.

These individuals bring diverse perspectives, skills, and experiences, and are making a difference through environmental education. We are thrilled to help these inspiring leaders share their stories and work with our community and beyond. Read more about all EE 30 Under 30 alumni in their biographies below! And learn more about EE 30 Under 30 and our latest awardees here >

Meet the EE 30 Under 30 Class of 2021

EE 30 Under 30 Leaders receive global recognition, join a growing community of inspiring EE leaders, and receive ongoing opportunities for professional development and networking.

EE 30 Under 30 Alumni

Amanda Abrom

Amanda Abrom

Program Manager, Global Schools Program, SDSN

Amanda mobilizes teachers, students, and schools around the world to teach sustainable development and take actions for the future well-being of the planet.

How are you using education to build more sustainable and equitable communities? 

I work with the Global Schools Program and the United Nations Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN) to ensure that students receive high-quality education to become the leaders of tomorrow. I conceptualized and launched the Global Schools Advocates Program for teachers, and now our program provides free training to educators in 80+ countries to promote education for sustainable development in school curriculum, operations, and activities. This year alone, we’ve reached 27,500 students and 6,880 teachers through this new initiative.

I also serve on the Secretariat of…

Vihaan  Agarwal

Vihaan Agarwal

Founder, One Step Greener

Vihaan is an environmental changemaker implementing solutions to tackle the problems of air pollution through education and action in waste management, recycling, and urban afforestation.

How are you using education to build more sustainable and equitable communities? 

The One Step Greener Activity Book for high-school students and an 8-module curriculum was developed & distributed in partnership with the NGO Vidya in New Delhi, inspiring children to undertake ecological literacy from a young age.

In the last 3 years, we have engaged with 45,000+ people through talks and social media, and have operated a monthly pickup service of dry waste in over 1300 homes across 14 communities, schools, and corporations across two cities. Additionally, we have planted, and take care of, 2000+ native trees, in the heart of Delhi. 


Cesar Almeida

Cesar Almeida

DJ, Planet Chambo

CEE-Change Fellow

Cesar (he/him) knows sound and music are necessary catalysts for change. Creative director for Planet Chambo in Chicago, Illinois, he finds energy and rest through his own creative work as a DJ, spending time with family and friends, and sports. He brings interests and knowledge in youth program design, video and audio production, DJing, artist network, and podcast production to the Fellowship. 

Cesar would like to travel to the largest solar plant in Morocco and record local traditions of music in Ecuador.

Dancing for Environmental Justice

The Project
"Dancing for Environmental Justice" aims to eliminate the barriers to inclusive, just, and sustainable access to green spaces across Chicago through transformative artistic performances that feature BIPOC artists. Our team intends to use the CEE mini-grant funding to fund episodes 2 and 3, which will take place at…

Francklin Barbier

Francklin Barbier

Sea Turtle / Seabird Coordinator, Haiti Ocean Project

Francklin educates Haitian youth and fishermen about their ocean and protects Haiti's endangered marine megafauna through conservation initiatives.

How are you using education to build more sustainable and equitable communities? 

I conduct workshops with fishermen who catch endangered marine megafauna. I introduce these fishermen to our marine initiatives involving sea turtle and shark tagging and explain how they can be a part of this important conservation work. I also talk to young people, who are the future of our country, and get them involved and engaged in protecting Haiti’s marine species. Through my work, I have helped change people’s views of these species for the better. 

Tell us about your journey to where you are today. 

In my childhood, I didn't know what protecting the environment was about. I thought it only meant keeping the area clean and not cutting down trees. Then, I met Jamie…

Ellen Bashor

Ellen Bashor

Education Director / Environmental Education Instructor, Prescott Community Nature Center / Prescott College

Ellen is an environmental educator and community organizer collaborating with a wide range of institutions to increase equitable access to environmental education, outdoor opportunities, and a healthy environment.

How are you using education to build more sustainable and equitable communities?

In my current work, I am the Education Director and Park Ranger at the City of Prescott’s Community Nature Center. Through an intergovernmental agreement that I revived between our local public school district and Recreation Services Department, and through hours of fundraising, planning, outdoor classroom and trail building, curriculum writing, and more, we are now providing free outdoor and environmental education to thousands of public school students. Through our department’s collaborations with our Health Department, Cooperative Extension, and other non-profits, we have identified families’ barriers to…

Aurelia Casey

Aurelia Casey

Program Director, Inner City Ranger

“Conservation begins right in Brooklyn”: Aurelia uses her community as a classroom to teach her Inner City Rangers, Brooklyn’s youngest environmental stewards, about conservation through an urban EE lens. 

How are you using education to build more sustainable and equitable communities?

During my early years as an environmental educator, I realized that most urban EE curriculum offered by larger organizations was not shaped by those urban residents most impacted by climate change. I looked at the neighborhoods that raised me to examine the environmental and climate issues we were facing. I found that many Black and Latinx people in these areas were already conservationists in their own way. For example, our reuse of single-use plastic bags for deep hair conditioning, our mothers yelling at us to “turn off that light”—this was our form of saving Earth. I built on that and decided to use the community as a classroom…

Kimberly Casipe

Kimberly Casipe

Science Program Manager, Philippine Reef and Rainforest Conservation Foundation, Inc.

Kim is a budding biologist passionate about curating learning experiences that inspire others to take action for biodiversity conservation and sustainable development.

How are you using education to build more sustainable and equitable communities? 

With the vision of wildlife and people in harmony for a sustainable future, experiential learning through the Philippine Reef and Rainforest Conservation Foundation’s Marine and Wildlife Camps has been the longest-running program that I have had the opportunity to organize over the last 4 years in the Danjugan Island marine and wildlife sanctuary in the Sulu Sea. The island is home to rich biodiversity and for almost 30 years it has been known as “Nature’s Perfect Classroom” where youth of ages 12 to 17 would immerse in nature, learn, explore, and encounter…

Diamonique Clark

Diamonique Clark

Founder, Director, Black by Nature

Diamonique is a self-proclaimed "adventure naturalist" on a mission to elevate Black joy and environmental literacy through naturalist training, outdoor programs, and science storytelling.

How are you using education to build more sustainable and equitable communities? 

I am using education to build more sustainable and equitable communities by creating naturalist training courses for Black residents in Baltimore. In 2020, I founded Black by Nature, a nonprofit organization to elevate Black joy and environmental literacy through outdoor programs and science storytelling. In our first season, we offered a 9-week naturalist training course and by the end of the course, all participants were certified as Maryland Master Naturalists—the first all-Black cohort of Master Naturalists in Maryland. I believe that centering the culture and values of my people while facilitating programs is essential for the…

Fontoh Desmond Abinwi

Fontoh Desmond Abinwi

Executive Director, Crusaders for Environmental Protection and Ozone Watch

Fontoh works to build “eco-kids for the future” by empowering young children to be ambassadors and combat growing environmental challenges.

Fontoh joins the Fellowship from ​​the Crusaders for Environmental Protection and Ozone Watch located in Cameroon. He brings with him an enjoyment of tourism, art and culture, and music concerts. His professional skills include developing community conservation actions, promoting environmental education amongst kids, project writing and management, crowdfunding and fundraising skills, and lastly skills on effective tree planting and bio-monitoring. 

Fontoh hopes to visit any national parks around the world with unique biodiversity qualities. 

He has been inspired by many passion-driven achievers in the field of environmental education. However, his greatest source of inspiration has been Mahatma Gandhi with his purity of heart and the way he emphasized protecting Mother…

Achare Elvis Ayamba

Achare Elvis Ayamba

Founder & Executive Director, ENVIRONMENT AND FOOD FOUNDATION (E2F)

Ayamba empowers his community members to sustainably manage, conserve, and protect marine and aquatic ecosystems.

How are you using education to build more sustainable and equitable communities? 

I train coastal community members (fishermen and farmers) and students on the Community-based Ecological Mangrove Restoration (CBEMR) approach and I am actively involved in conducting environmental education in schools and communities. I educate Indigenous farmers on the benefits of agroforestry and planting mangroves in degraded mangrove forests. We have planted over 8000 mangrove plants. My team and I also organize clean-up events involving youth and women, where we clean up landfills, streets, rivers, streams, beaches, and mangroves. We host these events on a regular basis, and they serve as a means of environmental education and sensitization campaigns for communities. Finally, I have brought in…

Forbi Perise Eyong Nyosai

Forbi Perise Eyong Nyosai

Africa Regional Representative, Sustainable Ocean Alliance

Forbi motivates youth to take action for the ocean by educating them about plastic pollution, recycling, ocean health, and climate change.

How are you using education to build more sustainable and equitable communities?

In Cameroon, there is a significant lack of knowledge on topics like climate change, conservation, pollution, and recycling. In 2018, I  got involved in a number of non-profit initiatives, and since then I have been traveling to different schools and teaching students about environmental issues facing their communities and what they can do to fix them. One way I have gotten students more involved is by handing out comics, organizing events, and giving presentations in schools. While working with students is a priority for me, I have also carried out environmental education and ocean literacy efforts in…

Amelia Fortgang

Amelia Fortgang

Bay Area Youth Climate Summit

Amelia Fortgang mobilizes California teens to combat the climate crisis through environmental education and climate action planning in their communities.

How are you using education to build more sustainable and equitable communities? 

I am founder and chair of the Bay Area Youth Climate Summit (BAYCS), leading a team of 25 students to educate and activate youth to combat climate change.

In September 2020, we organized a virtual summit, uniting 280 youth from 88 schools, 14 States, and 5 countries. We offered 16 workshops on issues ranging from coral bleaching to climate justice to environmental entrepreneurship. We also initiated school-based action planning workshops resulting in 15 Climate Action Plans. Seventy-five percent (75%) of these groups continue their work today, installing air quality sensors at schools, fundraising to install solar panels, creating community…

Stephen Gachagua

Stephen Gachagua

Conservation Education Coordinator, Ol Pejeta Conservancy

Gachagua is a conservation educator who encourages his community to make informed decisions to conserve natural resources and use them responsibly.

How are you using education to build more sustainable and equitable communities? 

Through my conservation education outreach programs, I hold conservation education forums in 45 local schools and 18 local communities adjacent to Ol Pejeta Conservancy with the aim of providing them with an in-depth understanding of our shared ecosystems. I also spearheaded the creation of seven beekeeping community youth groups in three communities and trained them on value-added practices for honey production. Through this program, the youth groups practice sustainable utilization of their natural resources. I also created four farmer tree groups in two communities, with each group having 10 members. These groups are…

Sarah Goody

Sarah Goody

Founder, Climate NOW

Sarah is a 16-year-old climate activist working to engage young people in the climate movement and empower them to stand up and protect our planet.

How are you using education to build more sustainable and equitable communities? 

After seeing a lack of climate awareness in my community, I founded Climate NOW, an international youth-led organization focused on educating and empowering young people to take climate action. Climate NOW was founded in 2019, and has since worked with over 10,000 youth from across the world and provided educational presentations to over 70 K-12 schools globally. Climate NOW believes that the path to combating climate change is through youth education and awareness. After all, how can we expect someone to take action if they don’t understand the problem at hand?

As the Founder and President of Climate NOW, I have contributed hundreds of…

Garvita Gulhati

Garvita Gulhati

Founder & CEO, Why Waste?

Garvita is a changemaker and environmentalist working towards the effective conservation of water and empowering young people to become a part of the change.

How are you using education to build more sustainable and equitable communities? 

Our book, “The Sustainability Stories,” has been published on Pratham’s Storyweaver and already has over 9000+ reads! We are now working with UNICEF to make these stories into fun interactive videos, the first of which you can catch here. For kids, by kids, this book aims to shape eco-friendly mindsets and inspire kids to be the change they wish to see in the world.

Our websiteWhy Waste?, also hosts modules to help restaurants, apartments, and anyone become more…

Francisca Kasuku

Francisca Kasuku

Conservation Education Enthusiast, Independent

Francisca is a passionate conservation educator working towards a future where communities live in harmony with biodiversity.

How are you using education to build more sustainable and equitable communities? 

I have been privileged to work with primary school pupils of all ages through a variety of projects. At Action for Cheetahs in Kenya, I joined as an intern of the education department with the main role of assisting with their Cheetah Curriculum workbook, where it was a pleasure to see the pupils yearning to know more about cheetahs. It was also exciting to have our Cheetah Club group start small and then have a whole school want to join the Cheetah Club, and to have most students volunteer to nurture trees planted during the International Cheetah Day. Over 75% of their trees have survived to maturity!

I am particularly encouraged to…

Sahana Kaur

Sahana Kaur

Founder and Director, Project All For All

Sahana is a youth advocate who runs educational and policy-producing initiatives focused on climate action and the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

How are you using education to build more sustainable and equitable communities? 

As a co-organizer of YOUNGO’s 2021 Action for Climate Empowerment (ACE) Youth Forum, I helped plan and execute a week-long series of side events and discussions. ACE is a provision in the Paris Agreement that promotes climate action via principles like education and training. More than 700 youth registered for the forum, and we reached almost 2,000 people from 130 countries. The forum produced 33 ideas for various themes, including ACE infrastructure and methods of mitigating ACE barriers. I am now helping develop an ACE Action Plan.

Via my nonprofit, Project All For All, I work to help youth…

Prajna Cauvery Kotera Pooviah

Prajna Cauvery Kotera Pooviah

Program Director, Anaadi CREST

Prajna engages students with sustainability issues from local to international scales through experiential learning and weaving together indigenous practices with global frameworks.

How are you using education to build more sustainable and equitable communities?

When students are introduced to sustainability at a young age, it helps them understand their role in solving ecological problems and enables them to envision alternate futures. Sustainability is not just an idea but a way of life. This lies at the heart of the Anaadi Sustainability Awareness for the Young (ASAY), an initiative I co-lead. It is a United Nations Partnership program for the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to educate school and college students about the SDGs, indigenous sustainability practices, and responsible consumption through immersive and experiential content. In India, there…

Giulia Marzetti

Giulia Marzetti

Local Pathways Fellow, UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN) Youth

Giulia is a sustainability professional educating and empowering the next generation of leaders to achieve the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) throughout Europe and beyond.

How are you using education to build more sustainable and equitable communities? 

With my outreach, I provide incremental change both on a large scale and at the individual level. Firstly, I am a person of several EE initiatives. For example, with the multimedia project “European Footprints,” I use storytelling to show young people’s viewpoints on the UN SDGs and inspire action. The storybook, videos, and teaching materials created for the initiative have been published on the NGO World's Largest Lesson and used in classrooms around the world by hundreds of pupils…

Mhairi McCann

Mhairi McCann

Founder & CEO, Youth STEM 2030

Mhairi empowers youth globally to tackle the world's biggest challenges through science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM).

How are you using education to build more sustainable and equitable communities?

 At Youth STEM 2030, we’re empowering youth globally to tackle the world’s biggest challenges through science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM). I believe that young people can change the world, but too often this potential remains unrealized. That’s why I’m on a mission to help young people realize their potential as changemakers by creating Youth STEM 2030 as the ecosystem of support, opportunities, and platforms that youth need to create a more sustainable future. This includes giving young people a platform through our youth-led scientific journal, Youth STEM Matters, and our Youth STEM Summit, which is designed and led entirely by young people.

Julia Migné

Julia Migné

Director, Conservation Optimism (University of Oxford)

Julia empowers people to act for nature by reframing the environmental narrative and showcasing stories of optimism.

How are you using education to build more sustainable and equitable communities?

I empower people to act for nature through my work as a science communicator. As part of my role at Conservation Optimism, I have led various educational projects.

In 2019, I helped develop a toolkit on how to frame conservation messages optimistically. The goal of this published Positive Communication Toolkit, which was produced in collaboration with Framing Matters, is to help conservationists get a better idea of how they can craft their messages in a solutions-based way and avoid falling into a doom and gloom narrative.

I also enjoy developing resources tailored for children. I started by developing a series of posters…

Joy Hayley Munthali

Joy Hayley Munthali

National Coordinator, Green Girls Platform

Joy is a youth activist empowering girls and young women in Malawi to be the next generation of feminist environmental conservationists.

How are you using education to build more sustainable and equitable communities? 

I am the current national coordinator for Green Girls Platform, where I provide leadership skills to build a movement of young conservationists in Malawi. I work with adolescent girls between the ages of 9-19 years old and young women between 20-30 years old, focusing on capacity building for climate change, promoting climate justice, and raising awareness on sexual and reproductive health rights for girls and young women in relation to the environment. I believe that climate change is a global crisis that can be solved with feminist solutions that are crafted by the women and girls themselves. That is why I work to equip girls and young women with the…

Ankit Pandey

Ankit Pandey

Founder, weincluded.org

Engineer turned development professional, Ankit works across rural villages in India to build the world’s leading co-lab and platform for innovative, implementable, and scalable solutions to the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). 

How are you using education to build more sustainable and equitable communities? 

Having been selected for the Nalanda University Scholarship in 2017, I worked on improving the livelihood options of 350 households by focusing on decentralized solar energy for remotely populated villages for irrigation and domestic needs.

Inspired to solve community problems, I was chosen for the Gandhi Fellowship to work along similar lines. I intensively worked on transforming the government education system to incorporate the Climate Literacy curriculum in schools. I conceptualized the self-learning Climate Change & Entrepreneurship modules for senior secondary public schools.

I…

Gloria Amor Paredes

Gloria Amor Paredes

Global EE Group Moderator, Co-Founder, Salumayag Youth Collective for Forests

Amor is an education for sustainable development (ESD) practitioner that advocates for culture-based multilingual education, women and youth leadership, and climate justice.

How are you using education to build more sustainable and equitable communities? 

I collaborate primarily with other young leaders not only from local communities where I work but also with youth from other regions through the networks I am a part of, including One Young World. I help design and facilitate dialogues and discussions about the challenges and opportunities in environmental education and community-based solutions. I also develop curricula and courses that bring deeper awareness and encourage commitment towards ecological stewardship.

Tell us about your journey to where you are today.

For the last six years, I’ve been deeply involved in…

Carlos  Perez Murcia

Carlos Perez Murcia

Global EE Group Moderator, Community Manager, Environmental Educator and Scuba Diving Instructor, Fundación Mundo Azul, Centro CIMAP.

A diver exploring natural treasures below the water surface, “Profe Tiburón” shares his love for sharks and the ocean through education, art, and science for a healthy planet.

Carlos is now the president of Sustainable Ocean Alliance Hub for Guatemala (SOA Guatemala) where he works by creating networks between scientists, communities, and government. 

How are you using education to build more sustainable and equitable communities? 

Education builds new opportunities for society and nature to thrive healthily and joyfully. Environmental education shows a new world to people by promoting more sustainable initiatives. The ocean, often hidden below the surface, is the main source of oxygen, water, and food. My main goal as an educator is to show this hidden world to the new generations, for them to build passion and become stewards for marine…

Emer Rafferty

Emer Rafferty

Youth Environmental Leader, One Step Greener COP26 / Translink Changemaker

Emer passionately advocates climate action and EE learning at all levels of society, connecting young people with nature, the climate, and biodiversity through education.

How are you using education to build more sustainable and equitable communities? 

Education is key in this crisis. An uneducated generation is an unaware generation, and so I believe that by creating greater learning opportunities about nature, our planet, and climate change, we can create a growing wave of conscious green thinkers. I am part of a Northern Ireland campaign for schools in which we aim for more time spent learning in and about nature. Having spoken to the head of education in Northern Ireland about our campaign, we have big plans ahead for our young peoples’ learning experiences. I am also working alongside the Department of Education to help create a…

Shriya Rai

Shriya Rai

Founder, Sashakt Bharat

Shriya is a youth sustainability leader building a network of community-connected, engaged, and empowered sustainability champions in India through education, advocacy, and entrepreneurship.

How are you using education to build more sustainable and equitable communities? 

At Sashkat Bharat, we are working towards crafting environmental education strategies and sustainability messaging specific to linguistic, cultural, and regional needs in India. Through our sustainability leadership conferences, we have trained over 2000 youth leaders and created the space for representative, inclusive, and innovation-driven conversations to lead sustainability solutions. Our collaborative efforts have helped us build partnerships with over 32 national and international institutions across the world, through which we have pooled institutional and educational…

Maiya Rainer

Maiya Rainer

Senior Park Aide, California State Parks

A Yurok tribal member with Apache ancestry, Maiya educates her local community and visitors from across the US about Yurok culture and history through stories and tours.

How are you using education to build more sustainable and equitable communities? 

A big part of my programs is telling the unfiltered and real part of the history about the Yurok people here in North Coast, California, US. An important part of my programs is describing how Yurok history affects our community today. Some adults and children think that history was thousands of years ago, but really these stories are only 50 to 100 years old. Our grandparents and parents lived these sad and unsettling stories, suffering physical and mental abuses in school and within their own villages from settlers. With the information that we are able to put out by our district, I feel more people will be exposed to more information about Native people than the…

Jason Robinson

Jason Robinson

Youth Program Facilitator , Ecosource

Jason facilitates environmental education workshops for intergenerational audiences on interconnections of economic systems, the environment, and human well-being.

How are you using education to build more sustainable and equitable communities? 

As the Youth Program Facilitator at Ecosource, I coordinate the Peel Environmental Youth Alliance (PEYA) project. I am responsible for the program development and delivery of events for the Peel community. I host monthly environmental education webinars aimed at youth and adults to increase intergenerational conservation related to the environment. Participants in our program learn from environmental experts and organizations to strengthen their climate change/environmental literacy and communicate those problems locally. Past webinars include plastic pollution, sustainable cities, COVID and climate,…

Erin Shultz

Erin Shultz

Conservation Education Manager, WAVE Foundation

Erin collaborates to make science accessible for students and schools to ignite curiosity and build the next generation of science-literate citizens.

How are you using education to build more sustainable and equitable communities?

My work with WAVE Foundation’s environmental education programs gives access to learning opportunities in marine science to students who might never see the ocean otherwise. By bringing strategically aligned programming into their classrooms, students get excited about learning. Our programs provide the opportunity for 3rd graders of Cincinnati Public Schools and greater Cincinnati to observe and touch a shark in their classroom. We then support students in facilitating their own investigation to learn more about that animal’s behavior and to experience the scientific process in an exciting and memorable way. Our program reconnects…

Ineza Umuhoza Grace

Ineza Umuhoza Grace

CEO, The Green Fighter

Ineza is an eco-feminist working towards climate justice through education, amplifying voices, and advocacy.

How are you using education to build more sustainable and equitable communities? 

I am using education to teach youth, children, and the general public about the environment and climate change. We use writing competitions, debates, and other events to educate public school children. In 2017, while I was still a student, I started what is known today as The Green Fighter, a youth-led NGO aiming to increase active youth participation to create a better environment in our community. Our past years’ achievement includes writing five community-based projects, conducting more than 10 community environmental education events, and reaching 3,500 young people and 15 schools in Kigali. Since 2020, we have been developing a curriculum that will be disseminated…

Kimi Waite

Kimi Waite

Educator & Ph.D. Candidate, NAAEE CEE Change Fellow

Kimi (she/her), educator and Ph.D. student and 2019 30 Under 30 alum, brings a wealth of experience as a K–12 educator to the Fellowship. Her professional practice lies in the intersections of social justice education, social studies, environmental literacy, and climate change education. She is on the Board of Directors of NAAEE’s state affiliate, the California Association for Environmental and Outdoor Education. Kimi serves on the National Council for the Social Studies Notable Trade Books Selection Committee, and is the 2021 California Council for the Social Studies Outstanding Elementary Social Studies Teacher of the Year. Kimi is also a Public Voices Fellow on the Climate Crisis with The OpEd Project and The Yale Program for Climate Change Communication. 

Kimi is a global educator and has taught in South Los Angeles, South Korea, and Guyana. As a former expat and the daughter of a flight attendant, she’s traveled to over…