Hip Hop Caucus Honors Congressional Environmental Justice Champions with Inaugural A. Donald McEachin Award

U.S. Senator Cory Booker, Representatives Barbara Lee and Raúl Grijalva awarded for climate and environmental justice leadership

WASHINGTON – Hip Hop Caucus, a national nonprofit organization that uses the power of hip-hop culture to advance civil and human rights, recognized Congressional environmental justice champions U.S. Senator Cory Booker and Representatives Barbara Lee and Raúl Grijalva with the inaugural A. Donald McEachin award at a reception on Capitol Hill on Thursday, April 20, 2023. In honor of the late Congressman and environmental justice advocate A. Donald McEachin, the award is bestowed to Congressional members who exemplifies leadership on racial justice and environmental justice on behalf of disadvantaged communities.

“Hip Hop Caucus is honored to recognize the powerful contributions of Senator Booker, Congresswoman Lee and Congressman Grijalva in support of climate and environmental justice, and celebrate the legacy of the late Congressman A. Donald McEachin’s trailblazing work, said Tanya Clay House, Executive Vice President, Campaigns and Advocacy at Hip Hop Caucus. “As we celebrate fifty years of hip-hop this year, we continue to highlight the myriad of ways that hip-hop has been a vehicle for showcasing the realities of climate and environmental injustices and shifting culture to enact effective solutions. We look forward to deepening our ongoing work with Congressional leaders from across the aisle to protect the health of our people and our planet.”

Senator Cory Booker is a long-time climate and environmental justice advocate, dating back to his tenure as Mayor of Newark, New Jersey. Senator Booker is also the co-founder of the Senate’s Environmental Justice Caucus. 

Representative Barbara Lee is the former chair and current ranking member of the House Appropriations Subcommittee for State and Foreign Operations that has purview over international climate finance. Representative Lee is also the former chair of the Congressional Black Caucus and former co-chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus. 

Representative Raúl Grijalva is the former chair and current ranking member of the House Natural Resources Committee. In 2022, Representative Grijalva opposed permitting reforms that would sacrifice frontline communities and gut bedrock environmental laws like the Clean Air Act and the National Environmental Policy Act.

All three Congressional members have been leaders on advancing the Environmental Justice Act for All. 

“I just want to thank the Hip Hop Caucus for creating the A. Donald McEachin award in recognition of the unwavering work that my husband did in the areas of climate and environmental justice,” said Congressman McEachin’s wife and Commonwealth’s Attorney for Richmond, Virginia Colette Wallace McEachin through video remarks at the award reception. “And I also want to thank Congressman Grijalva, Congresswoman Lee and Senator Booker in carrying on the legacy of my husband and reintroducing the EJ (Environmental Justice) For All bill.”

Hip Hop Caucus unveiled its 2023 policy and legislative agenda at the award reception, highlighting strategic long-term goals for the liberation and empowerment of communities of color. Hip Hop Caucus’ 2023 policy and legislative agenda includes organizational priorities for campaigns and advocacy efforts related to democratic policy, climate and environmental justice, criminal justice, education, health care, LGBTQIA+ rights, and economic justice. 

For more information about Hip Hop Caucus, visit hiphopcaucus.org. 

About Hip Hop Caucus

Formed in 2004, the Hip Hop Caucus (HHC) is a non-profit, non-partisan organization that leverages Hip Hop culture to encourage young people to participate in the democratic process. Through a collaborative leadership network, HHC addresses core issues affecting underserved communities. HHC programs and campaigns support solution-driven community organizing led by today’s young leaders.