WASHINGTON, D.C. — The National Wildlife Federation, America’s largest and most trusted conservation organization with 52 state and territorial affiliates and more than six million members, announced today that Chanté Coleman will serve as its first Vice President for Equity and Justice.
“The National Wildlife Federation is committed to becoming an anti-racist, 21st century conservation organization that authentically works to dismantle systemic racism. Doing this deep work to transform organizational culture requires extraordinary leadership and we are honored to have Chanté Coleman step into this new role to accelerate this critical work across the Federation,” said Collin O’Mara, president and CEO of the National Wildlife Federation. “Chanté’s leadership — first across the Chesapeake Bay and more recently nationwide — has been essential to our growing efforts to embed equity and justice through our organization. While we are still early in our equity journey, we are committed to doing the work and changing the practices necessary to become a truly inclusive and anti-racist conservation organization."
“In the wake of Black lives lost to police brutality, COVID-19, and over 400 years of violence and systemic racism in this country, the National Wildlife Federation is rightly expanding and elevating our anti-racism work,” Coleman said. “The National Wildlife Federation aspires for a better and equitable future where all people can safely enjoy the outdoors without fear of violence or racism, and to achieve this we must center equity in our work. The position of Vice President for Equity and Justice is an important step to shift power and work to build an organization and a movement that is rooted in the needs of those who are most oppressed. Going forward, the National Wildlife Federation will be an organization that actively challenges practices and policies that perpetuate systemic racism because we know there is no recovery for wildlife and our environment without dismantling white supremacy and addressing the systemic oppression that is tearing us apart.”
Coleman has served as the National Wildlife Federation’s first Director of Equity and Justice since June 2019 and led the development of the organization’s 2020 Equity and Justice Strategic Plan. She previously led the Choose Clean Water Coalition, where she helped it evolve to have an intentional focus on equity and justice. In addition to training and facilitating at conferences across the country, Coleman is a member of the Green Leadership Trust and was named as a “rising star” by Green 2.0.
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