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12 African Americans who are greening the nation

Feb. 2, 2011, 12:18 p.m.
Lisa P. Jackson

Photo: Wikimedia Commons

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Lisa P. Jackson

Jackson is the first African American to serve as EPA administrator, and she’s had a long history with the organization. When she finished graduate school, Jackson began working with Clean Sites, a nonprofit that brokered deals to clean up hazardous waste sites; however, she saw that the EPA was the real powerhouse in driving those cleanups and she began working there in 1986 as an engineer. Since becoming the head of the EPA in 2009, Jackson has passed unprecedented limits on air and water pollution, and she’s made it a priority to focus on those groups who are particularly vulnerable to environmental and health threats, including children, the elderly and low-income communities.