“The People, The Planet and Peace over Profit”
As a passionate Environmental and Human Rights Activist, Ms. Dorthea Thomas is a world renowned published writer, leadership coach and motivational speaker. She is an accomplished nonprofit professional, politico, and community engagement enthusiast offering an impressive 6-year background in community relations, volunteer/community engagement, with thorough progressive training in campaign management, communications, marketing and event planning.
A strong proponent of leadership and personal development, she uses her communication and motivating strengths to empower others to reach their greatest potential in life. A five-time self-published author, including her most recent publication “The EM:Power Dynamics” Building Community Power in the Environment Movement by Minorities and Young People, which is set to be released later this year. She is also the founder of the Detroit Environmental and Climate Justice Alliance, a community group dedicated to the pursuit of social justice – when it comes to clean air, clean water, and a just transition to a green energy economy for all. In addition, she is also the CEO and Founder of The Minority Women in Leadership Commission, a nonprofit organization dedicated to mentoring and empowering young women to increase their leadership capabilities.
Her former position before joining Sierra Club Michigan staff was at Michigan United as the first Environmental & Climate Justice Organizer, where she built up a core group of team leaders who engaged in creating strong environmental justice focused campaigns and narrative around a racial justice analysis, created petitions, lobby elected officials, and initiated sign-on letters. Also, she held the position of Midwest Recruitment & Logistics Lead, where she handled logistics for the Power Shift Midwest ’16 convening.
In the past, she has worked as an Environmental and Climate Justice Leadership Fellow with the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People to help create the first Climate Justice initiative. As a Climate Justice Leadership Fellow at the New Organizing Institute for WE ACT for Environmental Justice, she worked to implement an environmental justice perspective in the Obama Climate Action Plan. Also, she worked as an AmeriCorps Green Schools Coordinator with Detroit Public Schools and Ecoworks. In that position, she helps develop communication strategies, energy efficiency projects on energy, resource management, and nutrition, and manage utility bills to help improve student achievement, lower district cost and improve the health of the district.
In 2010, she became a Council on Legal Education Opportunity Scholar at Thomas Cooley Law School by completing a Sophomore Summer Institute in high honors. She graduated with a B.S. in Women and Gender Studies, Public Law and Government, and Criminology/ Criminal Justice at Eastern Michigan University.
As a Human and Civil Rights Activist, she has served as the 1st Vice President NAACP Youth and College Division in Michigan and an Environmental and Climate Justice Youth Ambassador for the National Headquarters; in the past she also served as an Executive Committee member of the Sierra Club Michigan Chapter.
Her community memberships and involvement exist in many local, regional, and national organizations: Sierra Club, RESTORE Northeast Detroit, NAACP Detroit Branch, National Association of Professional Women Greater Detroit Chapter, American Association of University Women, and the National Association of Women Lawyers Student Affiliate.
- Specialties Include:
Data Management, Analysis & Reporting
Risk Management & Policy Development
Community Outreach & Effective Coalition Building
Event Planning and Project Management
Media, Public & Community Relations
Fundraising, Finance Reporting, and Treasury
Strategic Planning & Implementation
Volunteer Recruitment & Retention
Author Bio’s and Blogs
Environmental Justice Reports
Articles & Campaigns
November 28, 2012
Between both civil rights and feminist movements, women of color have always been the catalyst of change in our nation. Climate change has disproportionate impacts on communities of color and these issues are hitting women the hardest globally.
August 24, 2014
Despite those who deny climate change, we’re already paying the costs right here in Michigan. In cities like Chicago, Milwaukee, and even here in Detroit, families are sharing their personal stories on how they are facing the difficulties of severe storms and outdated infrastructure.
August 1, 2014
Mom’s Clean Air Force
August 5, 2014
On Monday, August 4, 2014 I hosted a Live Google Hangout event with Katrina Staves from Just Label It to talk about the importance of GMO Labeling, and Environmental’s Action recent campaign to help push the initiative forward.
The purpose of our Environmental and Climate Justice Media Kit is to provide an informal
resource for Elected Officials, Staff Members, and Congressional Caucuses/ Committees to build
general awareness and the importance of environmental equality for low-income and
communities of color. (written and produced by Dorthea E. Thomas)
When it comes to environmental justice, it’s about ensuring low-income, communities of color have equal access to clean air, water, and land. Environmentalism, sustainable development, and labor are apart of the solutions to make the possibility of a better future for generations to come to a reality.
Working in the Nation’s capital has given me the opportunity to make the change that will help improve the lives of low-income, communities of color all over the nation. With just one full-time staffer, goals seem impossible at times, but this challenge has inspired me to be more strategic in my work and push myself harder to complete the mission I feel connected to.
Climate Justice Alliance
November 8 – 12, 2018
East Michigan Environmental Action Council (EMEAC) and the Climate Justice Alliance (CJA) gathered over 80 folks for a historic gathering to assemble and train fellow black organizers all over the country towards environmental justice and liberation!
- HOPE FOR GREEN DETROIT CAMPAIGN
- 25 X 25 CAMPAIGN
- CLOSE THE GAP CAMPAIGN
- ACT ON GMO’S CAMPAIGN
- BAN THE IVORY TRADE CAMPAIGN
- DETROIT WATER CAMPAIGN
- HARMFUL ALGAL BLOOMS CAMPAIGN
- CLIMATE JUSTICE CAMPAIGN
- EVENT PHOTOS