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Images from J.E.D.I. Heart’s first five blog posts

Images from J.E.D.I. Heart’s first five blog posts

Hi J.E.D.I.s!  Over a month has passed since I launched J.E.D.I. Heart. Exciting! I never expected that it would be so well received, and I want to thank all of you for your support. I am particularly grateful for your engagement in the comment section beneath each post.

Since the blog readership has grown quickly over the last month, I am re-sharing my first five blog posts in case you missed reading some or all of them.

Before I start, I have a few requests :

  1. Thanks to all of you J.E.D.I.s who have written in the comment sections. Just another reminder to please ask questions, add your thoughts, and share stories in the comment section at the end of the blog posts. Also, comment on the comments. It is highly encouraged! This is your opportunity to engage with other J.E.D.I.s, learn from each other, and draw from our collective wisdom. Some sample questions may be, “Hey Glenn, I loved learning about your JEDI journey. Can you tell me more about how you involved your board? We are having challenges.” Or “Hi Rob and Scott, when you convince others to start with personal work, what approaches have worked best?” Or “Hey David, why do you always goof off in pictures?”

  2. I started this blog to support all of you and the growing community of J.E.D.I.s. I want to be as helpful as possible so please email me any suggestions. What do you like? What do you dislike? What new topics should I cover? What do you want to learn more about?

  3. I do not have a communications department, nor does this blog make money. I rely on word of mouth from all of you wonderful people. Therefore, please share the blog with five people who would find these posts valuable. Ask them to subscribe. You could say something like, “Hi [insert colleague’s name], I just discovered this great blog. Since you are working on J.E.D.I. issues, you might also like it. I found this [insert link] post particularly helpful, and I love the rich discussions in which the readers engage. Check out my comments [insert links]. You should subscribe.”

J.E.D.I. Heart Blog Posts (April-May 2019)

A Multicultural First Earth Day?

April 22, 2019

Welcome to J.E.D.I. Heart and thank you for reading my first blog! I created this blog to help those of you working in the environmental, conservation, and climate movements navigate justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion (J.E.D.I.) with love. Since today is April 22nd, I figured I would provide an Earth Day themed piece.

Today’s Earth Day celebrations are multicultural, global, and diverse. People of all walks of life celebrate and take action to protect the planet we call home. When the topic of the first Earth Day is raised, often images of throngs of white people and white leaders come to mind because

these are the images commonly shared. One less known fact is that the first Earth Day included a call for a broad-based, multicultural environmental movement and included a diverse speaker line-up. I recently reached out to Denis Hayes, the main organizer of the first Earth Day, to learn more. This is what I gleaned from Denis’s first-hand account and several key speeches that he shared (Thank you Denis!):

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Why J.E.D.I. Heart?

May 1, 2019

Thank you for reading my first blog post and being incredibly supportive. Your receptivity and gratitude are more than I could ever imagine. If you find value in these blog posts and know of others that may benefit, please share far and wide (and with love).

This week I am providing background and context for the blog. Since I am a big fan of Simon Sinek’s Start with Why—which will be the topic of a future blog post—I would like to share why I created J.E.D.I. Heart, including why I chose the name and the meaning of the logo.

The overarching reason why I created this blog is simple: to support you and the ever-growing number of J.E.D.I. change agents in the environmental movement, especially those of you who are shaking up the pervasive white dominant culture and co-creating a racial and ethnic J.E.D.I. culture.

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In the Midst of Unprecedented Change: J.E.D.I. Progress in the Environmental Movement Since 2007

May 8, 2019

As always, thank you for reading my blog posts and for continually being so supportive. Because you all loved the logo description from last week’s blog post so much, I added it to the “About” page. For those of you who are still wondering what this blog is all about, please read Why J.E.D.I. Heart? Today, I will share my insights and observations, regarding J.E.D.I. progress in the environmental movement over the past 12 years.

In Spring 2007, the late Charles Jordan—the first African American to serve as board chair of a national conservation organization—and I submitted our chapter, “Diversifying the American Environmental Movement” in Diversity & the Future of the U.S. Environmental Movement. The book of over 14 invited authors reflected on various aspects of diversity in the environmental movement in the 2000s.

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The Crucial Importance of Me

May 15, 2019

And when I say “me,” I mean you! I am talking about you J.E.D.I.s, and the courageous and vulnerable personal work each of you do to effectively create the broader change in your organizations and the environmental movement. You are at the heart of this J.E.D.I. transformation and you are crucially important. The environmental movement and a healthy Earth depend on what you do today, what you do tomorrow, how you embody J.E.D.I. values, how you respond to challenges and mistakes, how you grow and become more effective year to year, and how you do all of this work in service to the whole.

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People of Color Support Networks are Trampolines that Bolster J.E.D.I.

May 22, 2019

In a report that I am currently writing about assessing J.E.D.I. capacity building in environmental organizations, I asked staff of color, “what has been the most crucial effort that has helped you survive and/or thrive in the environmental movement?” The top answer was support from other people of color. Support was described in different forms: formal and informal networks, networks internal or external to an organization, organizational people of color affinity groups, supervisors, and conferences for environmentalists of color.

The data I collected from staff of color also demonstrated that a person of color working in the environmental movement may experience hope, feeling valued and supported, and excitement working on issues about which they are deeply passionate, while also experiencing microaggressions, exclusion, being devalued, and feelings of invisibility. The same person of color may experience all of this in one week (as recently evidenced by a courageous person of color I spoke to this past week).

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Which blog post do you like most and why?

Marcelo BontaComment