About the Speakers Bureau
Through Earth Guardian's RYSE program we have partnered with incredible youth speakers who have both the expertise and talent to present on a variety of topics. From climate change, to human rights and social justice, to green entrepreneurship and innovation, members of the EG Speakers Bureau from all over the world are amplifying youth perspectives on important and complex issues.
The Speakers Bureau is a dedicated team of dynamic young leaders who represent the youth voice and the vision of Earth Guardians. Our members are available to speak at workshops and trainings, give keynotes at conferences, participate in panels, speak at rallies and school assemblies, and give media interviews. Members of the EG Speakers Bureau have been hired to speak at United Nations events, international rallies, and many other high-profile events.
If you are interested in hosting a member of the EG Speakers Bureau to speak at your event, fill out the form below. Please permit up to two weeks for a response, and note that, due to the schedules of our speakers, we will likely not be able to accommodate short-notice requests.
Meet Our Speakers
Iris Fen Gillingham | New York, USA
Iris Fen Gillingham is a 17-year-old who has grown up being homeschooled on an off grid farm in the Catskill Mountains of New York. Her family lives and teaches sustainability, growing and raising their own food. Iris raises Scottish Blackface and Shetland sheep and is a hand spinner. She is an artist and independent thinker with a deep interest in her Celtic heritage. She has grown up with the looming threat of the fracking boom coming to her home and the land she loves which led her to become a spokesperson for youth in her community. This brings her to press conferences, rallies, protests and meetings about environmental and social justice issues. She draws on her connection to the land where she lives and the warrior spirit of her ancestry to speak from her heart. She has led workshops and plenaries on youth engagement, ageism and empowerment.
Iris wrote as a journalist for the local town youth-led newspaper for the past three years and is very active in her community. She has taught climate change awareness through the theatrical arts and toured around New York State with NACL Theater. She is a member of the Earth Guardians RYSE Youth Council and serves as the Regional Youth Director for Earth Guardians New York. Iris is a voting member of her college senate and leads the Earth Guardians SUNY Sullivan crew there. She is also a youth member of the Earth Guardians Board of Directors.
Aji Piper | Washington, USA
Aji, 16, grew up in the woods of the Kitsap Peninsula in Washington. From his upbringing Aji developed a deep love and connection to the forest and waters of the Pacific Northwest. His journey in activism began when he learned about oil trains coming through his city and along the coast and he was driven to take part in protests and legislative hearings. He has since served his community by founding the Seattle chapter of Earth Guardians and serving as the President of Plant for the Planet, a nonprofit dedicated to fighting climate change through planting trees.
As one of 21 youth plaintiffs suing the United States Government in a Landmark U.S. Federal Climate Lawsuit, Aji is taking matters into his own hands. He is also plaintiff on another youth-driven lawsuit demanding that Washington's environmental department act to mitigate climate change.
During his spare time you can find Aji volunteering at local food banks, doing forest restoration work with his mother, and performing powerful activist-driven music.
Jonathon Reed | Ontario, Canada
As a passionate speaker, Jonathon's goal is to inspire more young leaders into climate action. Jonathon first connected with activism by sleeping on the street with the Occupy movement in 2011. In the years following, his love of nature and hunger for justice brought him into the climate justice movement. He recruited for Powershift 2012, marched in solidarity with Idle No More, protested planned pipelines, and organized for the People's Climate March. Currently, Jonathon is involved in organizing against tar sands in his homeland of Canada.
Jonathon has the natural ability to connect with young people, having spent years working with kids in outdoor education and at-risk youth programs. In his spare time, Jonathon enjoys performing slam poetry and mentoring youth.
Isabella Zizi | California, USA
Isabella Zizi, 22, is a member of the Northern Cheyenne, Arikara, and Muskogee Creek tribes and the founder of Earth Guardians Bay Area. Zizi's family has resided in Richmond, California for over 40 years and have served the Native community profoundly by bringing the first ever Native American Health Center and pow-wow to their city.
Ms. Zizi's involvement in environmental activism began on August 6, 2012, when a huge explosion erupted at the Richmond Chevron refinery. The explosion caused over 15,000 residents to flee to the hospital due to respiratory problems, itchy eyes, and irritated throats caused by the black smoke that covered the town. Since that day, Isabella has been tirelessly organizing in her community.
The American Indigenous Movement-West (AIM-West) is a huge part of Isabella's life, and much of her activism is focused around raising awareness about local indigenous issues through attending sunrise ceremonies every Indigenous Peoples day and UN-Thanksgiving, protecting sacred shell mounds, and speaking out about culture appropriation. She has also educated students, faculty, and friends about Native activist, AIM member, and political prisoner Leonard Peltier.
Isabella is committed to nonviolent direct action and has helped organize myriad actions in the Bay Area. She joined as the youngest member of Idle No More SF Bay to help organize refinery "healing walks": one walk per month for 4 months all along the refinery towns on the East Bay of San Francisco. Currently, she is focused on raising awareness about the Dakota Access Pipeline and the Standing Rock Sioux tribe. On November 15th, Isabella helped organize one of the biggest women-led days of action targeting the Army Corps of Engineers offices in SF, in which over 4,000 people shut down a main street to raise awareness about DAPL.
Journey Zephier | Hawaii, USA
Journey Mani Wanji Itacan Zephier is a 15 year-old environmental activist and youth leader from the Yankton Sioux Tribe, Ihanktonwan Dakota Nation. He is the youth director of Earth Guardians Kauai, founder of Earth 7.0, and works to encourage youth to get more involved in local politics and legislation.
Journey regularly speaks and testifies on legislation on behalf of the seventh generation. From his home on Kauai, he fights for Native and Indigenous rights, sacred sites, the environment, and the overall protection of Mother Earth. He is also the newest member of the RYSE Youth Council.
"I feel like it is our responsibility to think about the next 7 generations to come and what we are leaving them, Our leaders have left our generation a world in crisis, now we will ries together and find solutions to make sure our children inherit a livable planet. Our message to the world? It is that we are here, we are awake, and we will protect our future!"
Kelsey Juliana | Oregon & North Carolina, USA
Oregon-native Kelsey Cascadia Rose Juliana, 20, has worked on climate issues since age eleven. By sixteen, she was already a trainer and organizer for the Sierra Student Coalition’s week-long grassroots organizing camp where she inspired, taught, and collaborated with fellow youth on leadership organizing and activism skills. Her background includes work with Our Children’s Trust, iMatter, and 350.org.
Kelsey deferred her fall semester of college in order to participate in the Great March for Climate Action, marching 1,600 miles from Nebraska to Washington, D.C. urging climate action from world leaders...us! The march brought her to the People’s Climate March in NYC and Flood Wall Street, as well as an opportunity to testify at the People’s Climate Summit.
Mercy Carpenter | Ohio & New York, USA
Mercy is a trained peer educator at the Center for Anti-Violence Education, where she helped launch an online LGBTQ youth self-defense toolkit. She helped organize a street harassment summit with the Coalition for Gender Equality in Schools and spent a summer working with Groundswell, a nonprofit organization that facilitates mural-making projects designed and painted by underrepresented groups.
That same summer, Mercy received a position at a summer leadership retreat hosted by Generation Waking Up. She has also been an Arts & Activism fellow with the Willie Mae Rock Camp, where she taught an arts and justice curriculum.
Mercy continues to use art in order to inspire healing and justice. She is presently a member of BATALA, an all-female Afro-Brazilian drum troupe.
Victoria Barrett | New York, USA
New Yorker Victoria Barrett participated in the COP21 United Nations climate summit in Paris on behalf of the Alliance for Climate Education. She is a plaintiff in the lawsuit brought by Our Children's Trust against the United States government for failing to act to protect our climate for future generations. She has spoken to media outlets and the general public on the importance of protecting our climate in the pursuit of social justice. Additionally, Victoria is a member of the 2016 RYSE Youth Council and most recently addressed the United Nations General Body on Earth Day, including more than 150 heads of state, before the formal signing of the Paris Agreement.
Aidan Ferris | Colorado, USA
Aidan, 22, has been working to educate and inspire those around her to take action on climate change since she was 15 years old. She received a degree in Environmental Science at SUNY Ulster County Community College, where she revived the college's environmental club and served as the club's president for two years. She worked on a campaign for her school to adopt environmentally sustainable practices and because of this received the 2015 Presidential Award for Excellence in Student Leadership.
Aidan's past projects include Project Chicanti - an initiative to buy 100 acres of old growth forest to add to an existing nature reserve on Cerro Chucanti in Panama, and community initiatives to prevent water privatization and Niagara Bottling Company's plans to build a bottling facility using water from local sources.
With the better part of a decade's experience working with children, Aidan is passionate in her mission to teach the future generations how to be caretakers of this earth. With this goal in mind, she co-founded Earth Guardians NY. Since starting a crew, Aidan has spoken at public hearings and participated in direct actions, bringing the voice of the youth to the table. She seeks to empower youth around the world to use their passions to make a difference locally and globally. Aidan was a part of the EG COP21 Youth Delegation and has led several workshops with Earth Guardians focusing on climate justice solutions that youth can bring into their communities. As the Global Crew Director she supports crews worldwide and works to create connection and collaboration within the Earth Guardians network.
Xiuhtezcatl Martinez | Colorado, USA
Earth Guardians Youth Director Xiuhtezcatl Martinez, (his first name pronounced ‘Shoe-Tez-Caht’) is a 16-year-old indigenous climate activist, hip-hop artist, and powerful voice on the front lines of a global youth-led environmental movement. Xiuhtezcatl, who began publicly speaking out for environmental justice at the early age of six, has traveled across the nation and to many parts of the world educating his generation about the state of the planet they are inheriting and inspiring them into action to protect the Earth. His message has inspired youth-led Earth Guardian crews to pop up in myriad countries, growing the number of youth on the front lines to combat climate change. His work has been featured on PBS, Showtime, National Geographic, Rolling Stones, Upworthy, The Guardian, Vogue, CNN, MSNBC, HBO, and many more. Read more about Xiuhtezcatl here.