In February of 2009, as an excited but scared freshman, I boarded a mini-van and drove 15 straight hours from my college in St. Louis to Washington DC. I was attending my first big event for climate justice, Power Shift 2009, and I was looking forward to a conference that I thought would be a fun weekend in a new city. Instead, the conference changed my life.
Youth rally at the Capitol at Power Shift in 2009.
Something happened to me in the presence of the 12,000 other passionate young people attending Power Shift in 2009. I was deeply inspired and felt connected with something much larger than myself. And as I walked through the halls of Congress to lobby my representatives, I felt completely empowered, that I was meant to be there and that I could actually change the world. This was my baptism into the world of activism, and since those four days in Washington DC I have actively campaigned for climate justice.