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Meet the SustainPHL Nominees: Sustainability Next Gen

Meet the SustainPHL Nominees: Sustainability Next Gen

Here are this year’s nominees for up-and-coming sustainability leaders.

Jackson Kusiak, Solar States

Jackson is a solar designer and salesperson and uses a community organizing approach to develop local community Solarize initiatives. The focus of his outreach and organizing work is to make solar more affordable and accessible for low-income communities and communities affected by environmental racism and economic injustice. He helped co-found the Hunting Park Community Solar Initiative (HPCSI), which offers solar education and bi-lingual outreach (Spanish and English) for low-cost solar installation and energy efficiency and climate justice projects.

Hajjah Glover, Glover Gardens  

Hajjah Glover is the founder of Glover Gardens. She Glover Gardens during high school at the Workshop School, where she learned how to use power tools and technology and prepared to build garden beds for Glover Gardens. During high school, she had an internship with Sankofa Community Farm at Bartram’s Garden, a 3.5-acre community-based crop farm, rooted in the experience of the African Diaspora. As she wondered, “Where is the good food in my community,” the question pushed her to start looking for solutions for black and brown communities. She started a business that built and installed garden beds so that neighbors could be the ones in control of their food.

Glover Gardens helps to build sovereign communities throughout Philadelphia by designing, constructing, and installing custom garden beds and supporting home gardeners. Glover Gardens provides consultations, soil, traditional seeds, culturally significant starter plants, and the pre-built garden bed.

Zakia Elliott

Zakia’s work has always been community-centered and community-driven, with the goal to create a more just Philadelphia for Black & Brown people. In her current work, Zakia works with the Soil Generation coalition of Black & Brown urban farmers and organizers working to ensure people of color regain community control of land and food, share resources and prioritize community healing, grow food, and protect and commune with the land. They do this work through relationship building, honoring culture, community education, organizing, activism, and advocacy: A People’s Agroecology. As a member of Soil Generation and as of this year, co-lead organizer, she coordinates external communications, engages in political work on climate justice, and contributes to developing core theories and collective healing practices. She is most known for her past work organizing the Philadelphia Climate Works Coalition, where she organized a coalition of environmental, community-based, and labor union organizations to move the City to combat climate change by justly investing in its workforce and its impacted communities.

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Julie Hancher is Editor-in-Chief of Green Philly, sharing her expertise of all things sustainable in the city of brotherly love. She enjoys long walks in the park with local beer and greening her travels, cooking & cat, Sir Floofus Drake. View all posts by Julie Hancher
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