Charles Orgbon III

Charles Orgbon
At age 17, Charles Orgbon III founded and leads a 30-person organization centered on empowering youth leaders to take environmental action in their community.

Orgbon is a junior at Mill Creek High School in Dacula, Ga., 35 miles northeast of Atlanta. Originally from Florence, S.C., he grew up in a rural community where he spent much of his time outdoors until moving to the suburban community of Gwinnett County. However, he brought much of his appreciation for nature with him. Troubled by his school’s littering problem and lack of environmental concern, Orgbon formed a student action team, and eventually, he decided to empower other young people to start their own groups. Consequently, Orgbon created Greening Forward, which would offer mini-grants, recognition, civic engagement curricula, skill-building workshops, and an online platform for idea sharing for other young environmental changemakers.

Since 2008, Greening Forward has raised over $100,000 and has catalyzed young people to recycle 60 tons of waste, plant 200 trees, save 155,000 gallons of water, and stage the first-ever International Young Environmentalists Youth Summit. Orgbon also advises a number of youth-service nonprofits, including Youth Service America, Earth Force, the Zerofootprint Foundation, and the Gwinnett Children’s Shelter Teen Board. He also serves as a governmental adviser on the Model Atlanta Regional Commission and the 7th U.S. Congressional District Student Editorial Board. All that … plus blogging for Huffington Post. When he has time, Orgbon enjoys being outdoors with his family and hanging out with friends.