SACE Welcomes Pearl Eva Walker to Board of Directors

Walker brings a depth of experience and leadership in advancing equitable clean energy choices in the Southeast

May 3, 2024
Contact: Amy Rawe, SACE, 865-235-1448, [email protected]

The Southern Alliance for Clean Energy (SACE) is proud to announce Pearl Eva Walker as the latest member of our Board of Directors. An energy justice advocate, writer, and public speaker based in Memphis, Tennessee, Pearl is deeply involved in the Memphis community and works closely with local electeds and ally organizations on SACE’s “Memphis Has The Power” campaign. A longtime champion for energy justice, Walker served as Chair of the Environmental Justice Committee of the Memphis Branch of the NAACP and was elected to the Memphis City Council to represent District 3 in Tennessee, beginning January 2024.

Pearl’s longtime leadership in SACE’s Memphis Has the Power campaign has helped advance affordable and equitable access to clean energy for Memphians. Working alongside Memphis Community Against Pollution (MCAP) and other community leaders, Pearl helped successfully fight the Byhalia crude oil pipeline. She has also been instrumental in demanding accountability from the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) on their legacy coal ash pollution and lack of accountability to the people of the Tennessee Valley. 

Leon Jacobs, Jr., President of SACE’s Board of Directors, said, “As President of the Board of Directors of the Southern Alliance for Clean Energy, it is a distinct honor and privilege to welcome The Honorable Pearl Walker as our colleague on the Board of Directors. Councilwoman Walker brings a deep and rich background in issues related to energy, environmental justice and sustainable living. She has demonstrated extraordinary leadership in these issues, and we are looking forward to that brand of commitment and foresight on our board and in our deliberations. SACE is a proven leader throughout the Southeast in not only analyzing important issues, but also bringing meaningful solutions to the challenges we face. Again, a heartfelt welcome to Councilwoman Walker.”

Pearl Walker said, “I am honored and excited to be a newly appointed board member for the Southern Alliance for Clean Energy (SACE). I am looking forward to working with a dedicated team advocating for smart energy policies in our region. Clean energy isn’t just a buzzword—it’s a pathway to protect our quality of life and promote sustainability for all of us. I appreciate this opportunity to share my passion for healthy communities and to advance the mission of the Southern Alliance for Clean Energy as we work to elevate the conversation around the dangers of climate change and the importance of clean energy choices.”

Dr. Stephen A. Smith, SACE Executive Director, said, “It continues to be a great privilege to work with Pearl Walker. Few people I have met show the level of dedication to their community as Councilwoman Walker. She has been an unwavering voice for justice, both economic and environmental in Memphis as a community organizer and now as a voice for the people of Memphis on the City Council. Her leadership and insights are a great addition to SACE’s Board of Directors.”  

Pearl is inspired by many who have worked on justice issues before her, including Cornelia Crenshaw, an energy equity and justice advocate and Memphian whose protest efforts in the 1960s and 1970s led local utility, Memphis Light Gas & Water, to allow its customers to make partial payments on their bills. After witnessing Memphis communities, especially Black and Brown, struggle with energy unaffordability, high electric bills, coal ash pollution, and lack of access to safe and affordable clean energy options like solar, Walker wanted to work to mobilize concerned citizens and to elevate their awareness, understanding, and conversation around the dangers of climate change and the importance of clean energy choices.

Pearl continues to be involved with energy justice and climate events and educational opportunities around the country to stay abreast of current issues and deepen her knowledge of inequities so that she can be a catalyst for positive change.

SACE is honored to welcome Pearl Walker to our Board of Directors. Her leadership in advancing equitable energy choices is invaluable as communities across the Southeast advance clean energy choices.

About the Southern Alliance for Clean Energy
Since 1985, the Southern Alliance for Clean Energy has worked to promote responsible and equitable energy choices to ensure clean, safe and healthy communities throughout the Southeast. Learn more at