The Root 100
The ROOT 100 recognizes emerging and established African-American leaders who are making extraordinary contributions. The ROOT 100 celebrates leadership, creativity, service, and, above all, excellence.
Age40 years old years old
Hometown Seaside, CA
Claim to Fame Co-founder of ColorOfChange.org
Bio In an effort to strengthen the political voice of Black America, James Rucker and Van Jones created the ColorOfChange.org, an online citizens’ lobby of over 500,000 people dedicated to forcing politicians to be more responsive to their needs. After the failed governmental response to Hurricane Katrina, Rucker felt strongly that Black people had to break the political silence. Drawing on his background in Silicon Valley, the Seaside, California native tackled the relatively old problem with a new solution. Rucker uses the website to keep people informed, and has helped enabled thousands to speak out on race and political issues, shaping advocacy and electoral campaigns. Rucker is the founder of numerous other online organizing efforts, including Citizen Engagement Laboratory, the Secretary of State Project and Video the Vote.
Quote "Now that I'm a new parent, I'd like to have my father, who died 11 years ago, and my son at the dinner table. There's so much I can now understand and appreciate that I couldn't before."