While others see challenges, James sees opportunities. For two decades, James has dedicated his time and energy into the development and implementation of programs that increase career possibilities for youth of color.
James arrived in the states as a political refugee fleeing the 1967 Nigerian civil war. As an immigrant child living in New York city, the most memorable times were spent in Central Park. A beautiful location filled with people from every walk of life. This would be his first exposure to one of the incredible green spaces in the country.
Moving to Vermont with his family and attending an all-white middle school was a mixed blessing. The cultural isolation was tempered by the picturesque green mountains and the unending stands of trees. The total lack of diversity within such a beautiful environment led James to believe something had to be done to create a path of access for young people from every background.
This past decade, James has had the incredible opportunity to develop programs and projects that connect youth of color to careers in conservation. From Colorado to Nigeria, James has developed programs designed to connect young people of color to the natural environment. Over 40 years following the civil war, James is proud to be working with local governments to implement conservation training platforms for the next generation of Nigerian youth.
James is a graduate of Florida A&M University where he obtained a Bachelor of Science in Political Science and Public Administration, and holds a Juris Doctorate from the University of Florida, College of Law. He lives in Snellville, Georgia with his wife Angelou.