In the summer of 2019, Grist invited a diverse group of environmental journalists to balmy Seattle for a candid conversation about the challenges we face in our field. The dialogue touched on the need to leverage collective resources, to build an opportunity pipeline, and to drive lasting change in how newsrooms treat environmental journalists of color and their work. Through the process of sharing our experiences, we realized we face many of the same hurdles. Ultimately, this highlighted the need to address an urgent gap: the lack of representation of journalists of color in newsrooms across the country covering communities that are hit first and the hardest by the climate crisis.

Thus, The Uproot Project was born.

We set out to create a network to support the work of our peers, while advancing the careers of reporters of color who have been historically underrepresented in environmental journalism. The group established a steering committee and began hosting virtual work sessions, meetups, and conversations with existing organizations like the Society for Environmental Journalists.

On March 20, 2021, The Uproot Project officially launched for the public. The Uproot Project consists of several hundred journalists representing Atmos, Crosscut, Grist, Time, the Los Angeles Times, ProPublica, Vox, and more.


Lucia Priselac


Nora O’Brien

Operations Associate

Sofia Prado Huggins

Project and Social Media Manager

The Uproot Project Board

Paola Rosa-Aquino

Vice Chair, Executive Committee
Freelance Journalist

Maddie Burakoff

Associate Editor, Audubon Magazine 

Justin Worland

Treasurer, Executive Committee
Senior Correspondent, TIME

Maya L. Kapoor

Engagement Manager, Covering Climate Now

Rachel Ramirez

Climate Writer, CNN

Monica Samayoa

Chair, Executive Committee
Climate Reporter, Oregon Public Broadcasting

Iris Crawford

Secretary, Executive Committee
Communications Advisor (Region 2), US EPA

Melba Newsome

Journalist & Professor, Wake Forest University

Naveena Sadasivam

Senior Staff Writer, Grist

Chad Small

Graduate Research Assistant, University of Washington

Meaghan Parker

Executive Director, Society of Environmental Journalists