Reverend Lennox Yearwood Jr., the President and CEO of the Hip Hop Caucus, will deliver the commencement address at Sterling College’s 17th baccalaureate commencement ceremony, to be held at the College’s Houston House Gardens at 1 p.m. on Saturday, May 7th, 2016. The College will confer degrees on 30 students.
“We are honored to have Reverend Yearwood serve as Sterling’s commencement speaker. He is a dynamic leader who has mobilized tens of thousands of young people for environmental activism and social justice causes. He is a model of engaged, positive environmental stewardship for our students,” said President Matthew Derr.
Reverend Yearwood is an award-winning speaker and community activist who is one of the most influential people in political life. Yearwood currently serves as President and CEO of the Hip Hop Caucus, a national non-profit, non-partisan organization that empowers young people to participate in elections, policymaking, and service projects. Most recently, Hip Hop Caucus launched the 2016 Respect My Vote! campaign to register, educate and mobilize 18 – 40 year old voters in their communities, on college campuses, and online.
Over the past four years, Reverend Yearwood has been successfully bridging the gap between communities of color and environmental issue advocacy. He raises awareness and action in communities that are often overlooked by traditional environmental campaigns. Reverend Yearwood’s innovative stance has garnered support from the National Wildlife Federation, Earth Justice, and former Vice President Al Gore’s Alliance for Climate Protection.
In 2010, Reverend Yearwood was named one of the 100 most powerful African Americans by Ebony Magazine, and one of the 10 Game Changers in the Green movement by the Huffington Post. Additionally, he was named to the Source Magazine’s Power 30, Utne Magazine’s 50 Visionaries Changing the World, and the Root 100 Young Achievers and Pacesetters. He is the subject of a Discovery Network Documentary, Hip Hop Rev. Reverend Yearwood currently lives in Washington, DC with his two sons, who are his biggest inspirations to making this world a better place.