The First Valley Talk of the Year!

Social Architecture for Resilient and Sustainable Communities
Tuesday, March 19th
Valley Green Inn

This presentation is about the Overbrook Environmental Education Center’s work to demonstrate strategies that promotes healthier, more resilient communities in Philadelphia’s vulnerable neighborhoods with the use of sustainable practices. Philadelphia is the sixth largest city in the United States (behind New York City, Los Angeles, Chicago, Houston and Phoenix), with a racially and ethnically diverse population (estimated at 1,567,442, in 2015). According to the cities’ Health Department, 23.6 percent of Philadelphians rated their health as poor or fair, and those with the poorest health disparities can be tracked by race, ethnic background and zip code.


Jerome Shabazz is the founder and Executive Director of JASTECH (Juveniles Active in Science and Technology) Development Services, Inc. A not-for-profit organization developed in 1998, to promote environmental justice; encourage sustainable design and to promote public health in urban communities. In 2002, JASTECH applied for and received a US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) grant under the Clean Water Act to establish the Overbrook Environmental Education Center (OEEC), a community-based center dedicated to preserving our built and natural environments.

Under Mr. Shabazz’s direction, the OEEC completed a Targeted Brownfields Assessments (TBA) and remediated environmental hazards from a Brownfield site in Western Philadelphia. The OEEC has trained thousands of students on the Clean Water Act and Toxic Substances Control Act, and other topics that reduces human exposure to toxic substances at home and school. The OEEC is nationally known for its Environmental Justice and project based learning programs.

Mr. Shabazz is a member of the PA Department of Environmental Protection’s – Citizen Advisory Council,  Environmental Justice Advisory Council (EJAC); National Environmental Justice Advisory Council (NEJAC); Center of Excellence in Environmental Toxicology (CEET) at University of Pennsylvania and, he is a board member of Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful (KPB), he has a Master’s of Science Degree in Environmental Protection & Safety Management from St. Joseph’s University and has received numerous citations and awards for his environmental justice work.

Valley Talks are free for FOW members and $10 for non-members. Registration is required as seating is limited. Complimentary wine and cheese reception is offered.