Nia Eshu Martin-Robinson describes herself as “a sassy, femme-tellectual, queer, Black woman from Detroit.” An incredible speaker, Nia has been a strong advocate for Environmental Justice since 2001. She began her work with Detroiters Working for Environmental Justice and joined the Service Employees International Union. From 2006-2011, she served as Director of the Environmental Justice and Climate Change Initiative where she worked to bring the voices of people of color, Indigenous Peoples and low-income communities to the debate on a state, federal and international level.
While in leadership, she co-authored the report, “A Climate of Change: African Americans, Global Warming and a Just Climate Policy in the U.S.” The report examined the intersection of climate change with race and class (including vulnerability to disasters, health disparities, and unemployment) and included recommendations for taking action.
In March of 2012, Nia served as the inaugural Social Justice Policy Practitioner-in-Residence for the Five College Public Policy Initiative, serving five colleges of Western Massachusetts. During her residency, in her capacity as an expert in race, reproductive and environmental justice she delivered public lectures on both climate and reproductive justice; convened and organized a teach-in on race and the environment and led skill-building sessions for student activists.
Currently, Nia is lending her skills and passion to the Sierra Club’s Beyond Coal Campaign as a Senior Organizing Representative in Texas. In addition to working to close some of the most polluting coal-fired power plants in the country, she plays a major role in the Club’s diversity, equity, and inclusion work.
Nia is a proud HBCU graduate having served as the Activist in Residence at Bennett College for Women in Greensboro. She graduated Summa Cum Laude with a B.A.&Sc. in Interdisciplinary Studies with a concentration in Women’s Studies and Political Science and minors in Sociology and Global Studies.