Insights into nonprofit leadership & governance

The Sierra Club Tries to Move Past John Muir, George Floyd and #MeToo – The New York Times

January 27, 2023  

The New York Times recently covered the Sierra Club’s appointment of Ben Jealous, a civil rights activist, author, investor and nonprofit leader, as Executive Director.

For three years, the nation’s most prominent environmental organization has been ruminating about its past and future. Like many other American institutions, the Sierra Club was convulsed by the 2020 murder of George Floyd, beset by painful questions about its mission and history, including whether its founder, John Muir, was biased against people of color.

Now, the organization is trying to emerge from the other side of that appraisal.

Mr. Jealous, 50, chief executive of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People from 2008 to 2013, is the first person of color to lead the Sierra Club. (The club has had three people of color on its board serve as president.)

“There’s been a moment of reckoning that was important for the Sierra Club,” Mr. Jealous said. “Reckonings are hard, and I’ve never seen anybody really do it right. There’s a lot of pent-up emotion, and it all comes out.”

Mr. Jealous said he hoped to harness that energy, getting the Sierra Club more engaged with environmental issues affecting minority communities, and finding ways to bring more Black people, Hispanics and Asians into the environmental movement.

You can read the full article here.



  • Home
  • About
  • For Clients
  • Opportunities
  • Resources
  • Contact