EE 30 Under 30


Headshot of the 2023 EE 30 Under 30 Class.

EE 30 Under 30 recognizes young people across the globe who are building a sustainable future through education. The Class of 2024 will be announced in August!

Young people around the world are creating lasting change for both people and the planet. NAAEE’s EE 30 Under 30 shines the spotlight on these changemakers who demonstrate passion, commitment, and leadership using environmental education. The EE 30 Under 30 Class of 2024 will receive global recognition, join a growing community of inspiring EE leaders, and have access to ongoing opportunities for professional development and networking. 

Environmental education (EE) and leadership shows up in many different forms! We aim to recognize leaders with a wide range of backgrounds, who are reaching various audiences, and bring a diversity of perspectives to EE. We highly encourage nominees from across sectors and disciplines to apply. We welcome nominees who are:

  • Working at any scale: local, national, regional, or global, just to name a few!
  • In any position or role: community organizer, director, consultant, artist, teacher, and much more.
  • Using education in any context: in schools, businesses, communities, church groups, networks, government, the media—you name it!
  • Nominees must be 30 years old or younger (as of December 31, 2024). If you are over 30, you can still nominate someone else!
  • Nominees can come from anywhere in the world.
  • Nominations must be in English, but your nomination will not be judged based on your English language ability.
  • Nominees must be using EE to address sustainability issues, build a more inclusive environmental movement, and/or create healthier and more civically engaged communities. Read more about key elements of EE here.
  • Nominees must demonstrate some leadership in EE, but you do not need to be in a leadership position to demonstrate leadership! This can include (but is not limited to!) inspiring others to take action towards a shared vision, listening to and taking action for the needs of your community, innovating in the face of challenges, creating inclusive environments for participation and engagement, and much more.
  • Video requirement: All nominees need to submit a short introduction video (90 seconds max) and provide a letter of support. Please take a close look at the application, whether you are nominating yourself or someone else, to understand these requirements.

Watch the Applicant Webinar

Watch the Applicant Webinar (held February 21) to learn more about the program and get some tips for writing a strong nomination! 

Watch the Webinar > 

Additional Resources

About EE 30 Under 30

Since 2016, NAAEE's EE 30 Under 30 program has recognized 241 individuals from 47 countries who are making a difference through environmental education. To address today’s complex challenges, we need a diversity of perspectives, skills, and experiences. EE 30 Under 30 celebrates the unique and passionate leadership of talented young leaders around the world and gives them a professional boost to increase their impact. Each year our awardees join a growing alumni network of inspiring environmental education leaders and receive ongoing opportunities to network, grow professionally, and promote their work. This program is made possible by the Global Environmental Education Partnership and the U.S. Forest Service.

Learn about last year's EE 30 Under 30 Awardees (featured below) and the over 200 additional alumni around the world are working towards creating an equitable and sustainable future! Meet EE 30 Under 30 Alumni 

Since 2020, we have been proud to be able to provide financial support to several EE 30 Under 30 alumni through the Changemaker Grants program, enabling them to bring new transformative ideas to life and sustain their ongoing work. Learn more about this program 

EE 30 Under 30 Class of 2023

Jenna Cobb

Jenna Cobb (she/her)

Program Manager, Community Nature Connection

Jenna is passionate about facilitating spaces for people of faith and youth to cultivate relationships with nature and seek community transformation together.

United States, Age 29  

Phoebe L. Hanson

Phoebe L. Hanson (she/her)

Co-Coordinator, Mock COP

Phoebe is using environmental education and youth empowerment to help society adapt to and mitigate climate change.

United Kingdom, Age 21 

Idah Murithi

Idah Murithi

Project Coordinator, Northern Kenya Conservation Clubs, Mpala Research Centre

Idah empowers individuals to become eco-peacemakers by imparting knowledge and skills that enable them to coexist with wildlife and their environment.

Kenya, Age 25 

Michael Bäcklund

Michael Bäcklund (he/him)

President, ClimateScience

Michael is a passionate advocate for climate education, solutions, and peacebuilding who believes in creating realistic and inspiring spaces for people to do good.

United Kingdom, Age 20  

Carolina Rojas

Carolina Elizabeth Rojas Barahona (she/her)

Research Coordinator, Roatan Marine Park

Carol is a lover of the oceans, leading the first assisted sexual coral reproduction project in Honduras and educating local youth on the island of Roatan in marine conservation.

Honduras, Age 25

 Preview Name Sunita Bhandari

Sunita Bhandari (she/her)

Sustainability Program Coordinator, Kopila Valley Sewa Samaj/BlinkNow

Sunita is an environmentalist who is passionate about encouraging young people to initiate and amplify solutions for planetary crises through environmental education.

Nepal, Age 28 

Ruairi Brogan

Ruairi Brogan (he/him)

Sustainable Agriculture Policy Officer, Royal Society for the Protection of Birds Northern Ireland

Ruairi is a climate activist and policy officer for sustainable agriculture who empowers young people and farmers to take action for climate justice and nature.

United Kingdom, Age 26 

Sian Crowley

Sian Crowley (she/her)

Discovery Programme Manager, BLAKE NZ

Sian sparks transformative change by inspiring rangatahi/youth, kaiako/teachers, and the wider New Zealand community, and developing stronger intergenerational connections with the environment.

New Zealand, Age 25 

Jude Russel Ulatan Cuntapay

Jude Russel Ulatan Cuntapay (he/his)

Environmental Education Specialist, Save Philippine Seas

Jude is a teacher using environmental education to engage education stakeholders and the wider community in environmental sustainability and youth engagement.

Philippines, Age 27 

Owen Luo

Owen Dan Luo (he/him)

Resident Physician, McGill University Department of Medicine

Owen is a resident physician who empowers healthcare trainees and professionals to practice low-carbon, high-value healthcare and advance environmentally-sustainable healthcare systems.

Canada, Age 24 

Carlos Shanka

Carlos Shanka Boissy Diaz (he/him)

Founding Curator, Global Shapers Las Palmas

Carlos Shanka is a sustainability enthusiast fighting the climate crisis through interdisciplinary youth-led projects in the Canary Islands and across the globe.

Spain, Age 22

Founding Curator, Global Shapers Las Palmas, ClienEarth Next Generation Board, Windo Advisor

Max Han

Max Han Kai Ding (he/him)

Co-Founder, Youths United For Earth

Max mobilizes and empowers Malaysian youth to engage in nationwide environmental action through environmental storytelling, education, grassroots campaigns, and advocacy.

Malaysia, Age 22  

Maanit Goel

Maanit Goel (he/him)

Founder and Director, Washington Youth Ocean and River Conservation Alliance

Maanit is a conservation advocate enabling youth to view conservation and climate crises from new perspectives and act on equitable and scalable real-world solutions.

United States, Age 17 

Brigitta Maria

Brigitta Maria Andrea Gunawan (she/her)

Youth Leadership Council, EarthEcho International

Brigitta is a visionary leader who empowers communities to take meaningful actions to protect the ocean through environmental education, habitat restoration, and science.

Indonesia, Age 19 

Serag Heiba

Serag Heiba (he/him)

Founder, ThinkOcean Hong Kong

Serag is an ocean advocate and writer who creates educational resources and learning opportunities to inspire young people around the world to become environmental leaders.

 Egypt, Age 21 

Jack Hilgert

Jack Hilgert (he/him)

Conservation Education Coordinator, Nebraska Forest Service

Jack builds the capacity of educators, schools, and organizations to ensure a continuum of high-quality, non-biased environmental learning experiences are a part of daily lives of Nebraska’s youth.

United States, Age 25 

Kong Man Jing

Kong Man Jing (she/her)

Co-Founder, Just Keep Thinking

MJ is an environmental educator who shares knowledge through social media and inspires the next generation to become eco-stewards of the planet.

Singapore, Age 29 

Pamela Kiambi

Pamela Kiambi

UN Challenge Badge Program Assistant at the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts (WAGGGS)

Pamela is an environmental activist and champion for the UN's Tide-Turner Plastic Challenge programme, educating young people and communities about ocean protection.

Kenya, Age 27

Ernielly Leo

Ernielly Leo (she/her)

Executive Director, Embark Sustainability Society

Nelly is a longtime climate justice advocate, strategist, engagement enthusiast, facilitator, and community builder dedicated to a just, sustainable, and liveable world

Canada, Age 29 

Meng-Hui Lin

Meng-Hui Lin (she/her)

PhD Candidate, National Taiwan University and Delegate of Youth Advisory Council, Executive Yuan Taiwan

Meng-Hui Lin is an academic, advocate, and leader who is transforming knowledge into action to support environmental education efforts across Taiwan.

Taiwan, Age 27

Anghy Sayury Aquino Martínez Headshot

Anghy Sayury Aquino Martínez (She/Her)

Regional Ambassador, Tunza Eco Generation

Anghy is a dedicated environmental educator who actively leads projects, engages in various programs, and collaborates on platforms aimed at creating a sustainable future for all.

Peru, Age 24 

Regional Ambassador, Tunza Eco Generation; ClimateScience Teacher Ambassador, ClimateScience; PIM promoter on "Programa de Integración Minera" (Mining Integration Program)

Rifumo Mathebula

Rifumo Mathebula

Programme Director, Wild Shots Outreach

Rifumo inspires and encourages young people to connect with nature through photographybuilding self-esteem, raising aspirations and developing employment skills.

South Africa, Age 26 

Victor Ayegba Mathew

Victor Ayegba Mathew (he/him)

Tutor, Sahel Academy

Victor leverages the power of storytelling and narratives to create emotional connections between people  and the natural world and inspire action.

Nigeria, Age 29 

Vihaan Mathur

Vihaan Mathur (he/him)

Co-Founder and Managing Director, Youth Climate Action Team Incorporated (YCAT)

Vihaan is an 18-year-old student and advocate who has written a climate education children’s book and empowers youth through educational nonprofit initiatives and curricular change.

United States, Age 18 

Cameron Oglesby

Cameron E. Oglesby (she/her)

Environmental Justice Journalist, Storyteller, Intrapreneur, and Community Organizer

Cameron is an environmental justice advocate using the power of storytelling and coalition-building to bridge the divide between influential institutions and communities on the ground.

 United States, Age 24

Wendy Omanga

Wendy Adhiambo Omanga (she/her)

Founder, Moonlight Initiative

Wendy is a passionate young woman from the global south championing climate action, quality education and gender equality.

Kenya, Age 29  

Sanjana Paul

Sanjana Paul (she/her)

Co-Founder and Executive Director, Earth Hacks

Sanjana is an engineer harnessing hackathons as a form of climate action, creating spaces for students around the world to learn new skills, combat climate anxiety, and build projects and community.

United States, Age 26 

Tomás Teicher

Tomas Teicher (he/him)

Co-Founder, Consciente Colectivo

Tomas encourages young people in Argentina to become changemakers by giving them the tools and resources to create projects that solve local environmental problems.

Argentina, Age 24 

Nikkitha Terasa

Nikkitha Terasa (she/her)

Nature Educator and Naturalist, Palluyir Trust for Nature Education and Research

Nikkitha is a young nature educator introducing both children and adults to the wonders of nature, fostering a deep connection between them and their local landscape.

India, Age 21 

Oghenekevwe Emadago

Emadago Oghenekevwe William (he/him)

Naza Agape Foundation

Oghenekevwe is a girls advocate, environmental educator, and social entrepreneur. During his advocacy campaigns, he teaches local young people about the environment and climate change.

Nigeria, Age 24 

Tracy Wong

Tracy Wong (she/her)

Co-Founder, Nature Bathing

Tracy is a social entrepreneur leveraging nature to uplift people's well-being in Hong Kong, building impactful partnerships and innovative programs to connect people with nature.

Hong Kong, Age 29