To say we are incredibly fortunate and honored to be able to work with young women leaders like Madison is an understatement. Madison is a passionate and multi-gifted force who has jumped right in to support our growth with her dedication, professionalism, and skill in this exciting time for WEA. We are so lucky to have her on our Programs + Operations team this summer and we cannot wait to see what she accomplishes in deepening her impact for communities and the earth. Read on to get to know her more!
Name: Madison Barbee
Role at WEA: Programs and Operations Intern
Hometown: Puyallup, WA
Fun Fact: I’ve studied and performed classical ballet for 15 years! And I still perform with USF’s dance ensemble every semester!
Why did you want to intern with WEA? I have always believed in the power of grassroots community to create change, and I am extremely passionate about the type of intersectionality between social and environmental justice advocacy that WEA supports and empowers across the globe. I also strongly believe that the empowerment of women in communities around the world is the key to combating the environmental crisis, and am truly honored to play a role in what WEA is doing to make that empowerment a reality.
What’s your go-to strategy for lessening your environmental/climate footprint? Repurposing and upcycling are some of my favorite ways to keep my environmental footprint to a minimum. I find myself being very aware of the consumer culture we all live in, and with that, I’m always trying to find ways to use old things instead of buying something new. There are so many things that can be used for so many other things in this world, and it can be so fun to be creative with repurposing old things into something new and unique. Thrifting is also a fave of mine, and thrift finds are always so special and one-of-a-kind!
Tell us about a woman who inspires you. Alexandria Ocasio Cortez has been a huge inspiration in my day-to-day life recently. I think she has such a strong presence and call for action on so many levels, and she is a great reminder for me to keep persevering in my efforts to help change the world. She gives me a lot of hope as well, even though bringing up the need for climate action seems like a daunting task in this current moment, she is bringing these issues to light, and advancing them in a very public arena, which is absolutely great.
What’s your favorite thing to do in the Bay Area? I will go to almost any concert, anytime, anywhere. Live music is a big passion of mine, and there are so many unique venues and shows happening all the time in all corners of the Bay.
Any community events coming up you’re excited about (bonus points if it’s women-led/organized!)? The Conservatory of Flowers is putting on Botanicals and Brews in August! It’ll be a great time for the community to come together to experience amazing local music (my fave) and drinks, and the beauty of Golden Gate Park!
What are you currently reading / watching / listening to? I’m currently watching Big Little Lies, the drama and acting are truly unparalleled! I’m reading Dark Emu, By Bruce Pascoe which takes an in-depth look at Australian Aboriginal contributions to major modern technologies. And I’m currently listening to Goldlink’s new album, Diaspora, soooo good!