About DeNarae's Work
DeNarae Stewart (they/them) is a master’s student in San Jose State University’s Environmental Studies department. Their work addresses research bias in the field of sustainable consumption by investigating factors influencing the consumption of hair care products in Black communities throughout San Jose and Oakland, California. Inspired by the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals, DeNarae’s research strives to facilitate the equitable transfer of information and resources needed to create and promote viable, sustainable consumption efforts in underrepresented communities.
Raised in an underserved minority community, DeNarae experienced firsthand the lack of attention afforded to educating the community on environmental issues. Their connection to nature instead formed outside of the classroom by collecting rocks. Their experience leads them to believe that improving environmental citizenship begins with building a relationship with one’s environment and providing educational programs that harness those connections to make meaningful impacts. DeNarae previously interned with Grassroots Ecology, performing habit restoration efforts at five public and private parks in the South San Francisco Bay area and volunteering as a team leader for school groups visiting the parks. While pursuing their B.S. in Environmental Studies, they helped create and perform office sustainability evaluations and workshops for San Jose State staff through the Environmental Resource Center. DeNarae aspires to establish accessible environmental education programs in their hometown.