Each month, we highlight a new Supermom of the Month, a volunteer who has gone above and beyond to advocate for clean air and children’s health.
This month, we are celebrating Robin Gamble. Robin was nominated by Michigan Field Organizer Elizabeth Hauptman. Robin is a photographer, mentor, and steadfast advocate for clean air and environmental protection. She has personally witnessed the devastating impact of extreme weather. Her home near the Detroit River flooded after major storms in 2017 and 2018, and in the summer of 2023, when smoke from the Canadian wildfires blanketed the Midwest, she endured the poorest air quality in the world.
Robin also has several family members with asthma and has shown an unwavering dedication to addressing clean air challenges in her community. As a volunteer with Moms Clean Air Force, she has testified in support of strong EPA protections against air and climate pollution from cars, trucks, and power plants. She has spoken out for a swift transition to zero-emission power sources. And she has taken stunning photographs of our events in Michigan.
We asked Robin a few questions about her motivation and activism:
Why did you join Moms Clean Air Force?
I joined Moms Clean Air Force because I am deeply concerned about the air quality and environmental challenges faced by my family and community. Having experienced the effects of powerful storms, flooding, and poor air quality firsthand in Detroit, I felt compelled to take action. When my childhood friend, Elizabeth Hauptman, became the Michigan field organizer at Moms Clean Air Force, I had an opportunity to actively contribute to the fight for clean air and advocate for EPA protections against pollution from sources like cars, trucks, and power plants. I want to ensure a healthier future for my family and five grandchildren.
How do you involve your kids in environmental education or awareness?
I believe it’s crucial to instill a sense of environmental awareness in my children and grandchildren. To involve them, I incorporate eco-friendly practices into our daily lives, like conserving energy by turning off the lights when we leave rooms, reducing waste, and making sustainable choices by buying less or choosing eco-friendly products. Additionally, I engage them in outdoor activities to foster a connection with nature. Teaching them about environmental issues in an age-appropriate manner helps them understand the significance of protecting our planet for future generations.
In addition to my advocacy work with Moms Clean Air Force, I am actively involved as a mentor for youth, teaching them photography at Belle Isle in Detroit. This role allows me to share my passion for photography with the younger generation, providing them with valuable skills and a creative outlet. Belle Isle, with its natural beauty, serves as an inspiring backdrop for our photography sessions. Through this mentoring, I aim to not only nurture their artistic abilities but also instill a sense of appreciation for the environment. Empowering youth to visually capture the world around them can be a powerful tool in fostering environmental awareness and advocacy for a cleaner, healthier community.
How did you first become interested in environmental and air quality issues?
My interest in environmental and air quality issues stems from personal experiences. I grew up with asthma and witnessed the impact of poor air quality on my family. The extreme storms and flooding of my house several years ago, coupled with Detroit’s ranking as the 12th most polluted city for soot pollution by the American Lung Association, heightened my awareness. This past summer, Detroit had the worst air quality in the world for a couple days because of drifting Canadian wildfire smoke.
These challenges motivated me to explore ways to address environmental issues and advocate for cleaner air. Joining Moms Clean Air Force provided me with a platform to actively contribute to the cause. I’ve attended rallies and press conferences, helped remind folks to vote, and advocated for electric school buses for Detroit students.
What role do you think moms and caregivers can play in addressing environmental challenges?
Moms and caregivers play a pivotal role in addressing environmental challenges. They can be powerful advocates for change by raising awareness within their communities, engaging in grassroots movements, and advocating for policy changes that promote cleaner air and a healthier environment. Moms have a unique ability to influence decision makers and shape policies that directly impact the well-being of their families. By fostering a sense of environmental responsibility in their children and communities, moms contribute to building a sustainable and cleaner future.