Veronica Coptis is a Senior Advisor for Taproot Earth.
Veronica transformed the Center for Coalfield Justice to be rooted in local community members’ experiences and led by those most impacted by the intersections of environmental and economic injustice. Through her leadership at the Center for Coalfield Justice, Veronica has helped in the formation of the PA Climate Equity Table and the regional People Over Petrochemicals Coalition and advised many other movement formations to center traditionally neglected voices.
Veronica came into this work being directly impacted by a coal mine expansion in her rural community that rarely challenged the fossil fuel industry. Through waiting tables while in college, she heard story after story of how dirty energy extraction was impacting her neighbors, which inspired her to volunteer with the Center for Coalfield Justice. She then began organizing with the Mountain Watershed Association, helping communities facing the expansion of fracking in western Pennsylvania establish community groups to protect their water, air, and homes. Veronica is a proud first generation college graduate with a degree in Biology from West Virginia University.
Veronica lives in southwestern Pennsylvania with her husband and two children. She enjoys spending time outdoors. You can read more about her activism profiled in the New Yorker.