Climate activists you should know: Jerome Foster II

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Who is Jerome Foster II? Who is Jerome Foster II? Who is Jerome Foster II? Who is Jerome Foster II?

Name: Jerome Foster II

Age: 19

City: New York, New York

Area of focus: Climate justice

Jerome Foster knows Washington, D.C.

He has served on the Washington, D.C. State Board of Education’s Advisory Council, as an intern for Congressman and civil rights hero John Lewis, and is currently a member of the Biden administration’s White House Environmental Justice Advisory Council.

That would be a full resume for a Washington lifer. Foster, though, is just 19.

He knew the Capitol building quite well before they invited him in, too: For 57 weeks, he spent his Fridays outside of the White House, striking for climate change.

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He’s been ambitious from the start.

When he was 14, he founded a virtual reality company, TAU VR, that allows people to experience digital environments including showing the effects of climate change.

The same year, he founded Climate Reporter, an international news outlet focused on delivering climate-related news to young audiences.

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My parents always told me that you can’t just sit there and mope or be angry, no one is going to care. You have to actually do something.

Foster is just getting started with his college career as a student at Pace University in New York. But he’s been making an impact on campuses for some time now. As a high schooler, he took summer classes at Harvard and took part in Divest Harvard demonstrations, a student-led movement to push the university to end all investments in fossil fuels.

Though Foster is studying now at Pace, his activism can be seen across the country. He’s the founder of OneMillionOfUs, a youth-led advocacy group that is pushing for action on climate change.

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Waiting for politicians to do something ... that’s not what it’s about. ... It’s about rising up. We have to peel back the onion and do something. Call a member of Congress. Organize.

Now, he’s in the White House.

Foster currently serves on President Biden’s White House Environmental Justice Advisory Council, focusing on improving Black and Indigenous visibility within climate policy. He is the youngest ever White House adviser, and he’s helping to steer the Biden administration’s climate agenda.

“It’s still a daunting task, the task of stopping the climate crisis is still no easier,” he told The Guardian of his role within the Biden White House. “But I’m a lot more optimistic now.”

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Want to keep up with Foster’s work?

Follow him on Twitter and Instagram to get updates. You can also check out this PBS interview he did in November to learn more about his work in the White House.