Rick Herron is the former Campaigns Assistant at Sojourners. He was born and raised in Dresden, Tenn., and he hopes never to forget where he’s from. While in high school, his life was forever changed after watching An Inconvenient Truth, and in 2007 he became a Climate Project presenter after being trained on best practices around communicating the science of climate change.

Rick graduated from Yale University in 2013 with a degree in political science. During his time there, he waged a spirited campaign against the insidious and deceptive campus-wide convention of referring to cookouts as "barbecues." While his valiant efforts were ultimately unsuccessful, he believes that his stalwart opposition against impossible odds constituted a kind of moral victory.

After college he worked as a Sierra Club field organizer in Tacoma, Wash. and as a communications staffer on political campaigns in Tennessee before coming to Sojourners.

Rick is passionate about building a movement for climate justice and spends a lot of time thinking about what role Christians and other people of faith should play in building that movement.

In his free time, Rick enjoys running, swing dancing, writing ridiculous song parodies about political topics (he once rapped about the Iraq war to the tune of “This Is Why I Rock” in front of eight hundred people), and playing basketball.

You can follow Rick on Twitter: @rick_herron

Posts By This Author

An Almost-Answer to Climate Prayers at the Second Presidential Debate

by Rick Herron 10-10-2016

Photo via Kaleb Nyquist

Grist’s Emma Merchant recently crunched the numbers on how frequently climate change has been discussed in the debates of the past five presidential election cycles (2000, 2004, 2008, 2012, and 2016).

She found that, out of 1,500 minutes of presidential and vice-presidential debate, climate change got a paltry 37 minutes of discussion. In 2012, of course, climate change got a whopping zero minutes of debate time.

Obama’s Clean Power Plan Heads Back to Court Today. Here’s What You Need to Know.

by Rick Herron 09-27-2016

Image via /Shutterstock.com

If this case goes to before SCOTUS and the court is split, the future of the Clean Power Plan will ultimately be determined by who sits in the White House — a leader who has the power to appoint justices, and the power to rescind the Clean Power Plan if they so choose.

New Report Shows How the TPP Is Like a Zombie, Vampire, and White Walker All in One

by Rick Herron 03-24-2016

Last November, my deskmates at Sojourners (and my colleagues working all the way on the other side of the office) were interrupted by my joyful whooping and hollering at the news that President Obama had finally, finally killed the Keystone pipeline once and for all. Leading climate activist (and Sojourners contributing editor) Bill McKibben noted that the significance of the decision rippled far beyond Keystone XL itself: It made the president “the first world leader to reject a project because of its effect on the climate.”

Over the years, Keystone XL had become known by activists and journalists alike as “the zombie pipeline” — with delay after delay in the review process and legislative defeats followed by legislative resurrections in Congress as members attempted to expedite approval, the issue just wouldn’t die.

Coalition of Immokalee Workers Declare National Boycott of Wendy’s

by Rick Herron 03-07-2016

Coalition of Immokalee Workers. Image via CWMc/Flickr

The boycott stems from Wendy’s refusal to CIW’s Fair Food Program, a workplace-monitoring program that the group designed to prevent worker abuse and exploitation, according to the Houston Chronicle.

Wendy’s has moved some operations out of Florida — where tomato growers had begun implementing the Fair Food Program — to Mexico, where worker abuse in the industry has been widely documented.

5 Environmental Justice Takeaways From Last Night's Debate in Flint

by Rick Herron 03-07-2016
Flint Water Tower Plant

Flint Water Tower Plant, ehrlif / Shutterstock.com

Last night’s Democratic presidential primary debate in Flint, Mich., ran the gamut on issues, from guns to trade to racism to religion.

But it was also the most environmentally focused debate yet in the 2016 campaign.

Here’s a quick summary of the main environmental issues that came up (and a couple that didn’t).

On U.S.-Mexico Border, Pope Criticizes Corruption in Church and State

by Rick Herron 02-17-2016

Image via /Shutterstock.com

Pope Francis conducted Mass in the Mexican state of Chiapas (home to more than 1 million indigenous people), with Bibles available in different indigenous languages in order to make the ceremony accessible to as many audience members as possible.

Pope Francis minced no words when it came to the environment: “The environmental challenge that we are experiencing and its human causes affects us all and demands our response ... we can no longer remain silent before one of the greatest environmental crises in world history.” 

Immigration Activists Deliver 136K ‘Stop the Raids’ Signatures to White House

by Rick Herron 02-03-2016

Image via Megan Cagle/Church World Service

With chants of “Hey, Obama, don’t deport my mama!” and "Que queremos? Justicia! Cuando? Ahora!" a diverse group of immigration activists and leaders made their way from St. John’s Episcopal Church at Lafayette Square to rally at the White House on Tuesday. They were there to demand that the Obama administration stop deporting Central American asylum seekers and instead grant them Temporary Protected Status. With them they carried boxes full of more than 136,000 petition signatures calling for the same.

SCOTUS to Hear Case on Obama Administration’s Immigration Executive Actions

by Rick Herron 01-19-2016

The Supreme Court’s decision to take up the case now is highly significant, since it means that the court will rule on the matter during this term (likely by the end of June), allowing President Obama and his administration to at least begin moving forward with implementation before he leaves office.

Sustained by Hope

by Rick Herron, by JP Keenan 09-29-2015

Members of the #100Women100 Miles Pilgrimage at the Basilica in Washington, DC. Photo by JP Keenan / Sojourners 

To have a group of mostly Hispanic immigrant women at the Basilica, holding aloft quotes about immigration from history’s first South American pope who would deliver a Mass entirely in Spanish the very next day—who would have ever envisioned this scene just a few years ago? It would have seemed absurd or a delusional fantasy at best. Yet here they were. And their stories and their witness are a ray of hope to sustain those fighting to fix our deeply broken immigration system.

Immigrants, Activists Begin 100 Women, 100 Miles Pilgrimage

by Rick Herron 09-15-2015
Photo via JP Keenan / Sojourners
Photo via JP Keenan / Sojourners

Today 100 women from all across the country are embarking on a 100-mile pilgrimage from a detention center in York County, Pa., to Washington, D.C., a nine-day journey calling attention to the plight of immigrants in the run-up to Pope Francis’ visit to the nation’s capital.