Mustafa Santiago Ali

Keynote: Courageous Actions and Conscientious Conversations to Win on Climate Justice

Mustafa Ali

Dr. Mustafa Santiago Ali is the Executive Vice President of Conservation & Justice for the National Wildlife Federation (NWF), former Interim Chief of Programs at the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS), Instructor at American University and the Founder and CEO of Revitalization Strategies.  

Before joining NWF, Mustafa was the Senior Vice President for the Hip Hop Caucus (HHC), a national nonprofit and nonpartisan organization that connects the Hip Hop community to the civic process. Prior to joining the HHC, Mustafa worked 22 years at the EPA and 2 years on Capitol Hill working for Congressman John Conyers chairman of the Judiciary Committee. 

Mustafa began working on Social Justice issues at 16 and joined the EPA as a student, becoming a founding member of the EPA’s Office of Environmental Justice (OEJ). He most recently served as Senior Advisor for Environmental Justice and Community Revitalization and Assistant Associate Administrator. He led the Interagency Working Group on Environmental Justice (IWG) which brought together 17 Federal Agencies & Departments and various White House offices to strategically leverage resources to uplift vulnerable communities across the country. He has also worked with over 1,000 domestic and international communities to secure environmental, health and economic justice. 

In 2019 Mustafa co-designed and co-moderated the first Presidential forum on Environmental Justice with Amy Goodman host of Democracy Now. He has interviewed some of America’s most influential leaders in Politics, Hip Hop, Civil Rights, Climate and Social Justice. 

He currently works with a number of Fortune 500 companies as they journey towards becoming 21st century organizations, focused on integrating justice and equity into their respective programs, policies and activities.  In late 2020 he launched the Clean Economy of Color Coalition (CECC) to better prepare and educate entrepreneurs, frontline organizations and local officials of color for the new sets of opportunities that the clean economy provides. To date thousands of participants have engaged with the CECC and it continues to grow monthly. 

Mustafa has also worked with a number of Congressional representatives in the design of legislation focused on health care, gun violence, climate, housing, transportation, jobs and environmental justice. He has testified on Capitol Hill numerous times highlighting how stronger legislation can drive more inclusive policies, investments and actions that have a direct effect on our most vulnerable communities. 

Dr. Ali is frequently seen on television, including appearances on MSNBC, ABC, CNN, VICE, FUSE, BET, National Geographic, Full Frontal with Samantha Bee, and Democracy NOW! Mustafa is also a regular guest on WURD radio, Roland Martin Unfiltered, Black News Channel, The Dean Obeidallah Show, and many others… 

Mustafa has been featured or cited in over 300 news publications and has been a guest lecturer at over 100 colleges and universities. He currently serves as a commissioner, advisor or board member on Roddenberry Foundation, National Children’s Campaign, Climate Power, TREE, One Million of Us, The Weather Channel, Green Sports Alliance, DC Environmental Film Festival, The NAACP Image Awards & The American Academy of Arts and Sciences (AAAS).