Lori Popkewitz Alper is the environmental advocate behind Groovy Green Livin, a website dedicated to sharing ideas, tips, thoughts and trends relating to living a greener lifestyle. After several stressful years practicing law in the Boston area, she knew she needed a change. Sticking to a clean, organic lifestyle changed her life, so she decided to take to the internet to share it with others. Along the way, she’s gotten involved in environmental causes and is a passionate consumer advocate. We sat down with her to learn more about her commitment to making the world a healthier place.
1. How and when did your passion for advocacy begin, particularly surrounding green living?
After practicing law for many years, I realized that I had outgrown that fast paced and stressful lifestyle. I slowly shifted my focus towards a creating a green, clean lifestyle and started educating myself about chemicals and other toxins that were going in and on my body. I was amazed at what I found! A few years later, two of my children developed life-threatening food allergies. My commitment to living as toxin-free as possible became even stronger as a way to gain some control over their allergies. Blogging offered a venue for sharing information and connecting with others. After a year of planning and creating my site, Groovy Green Livin, was born!
2. How long have you been advocating for green living and what has been your proudest moment so far?
It’s hard to believe that my blog has been up and running for four years! During that time, I’ve had several proud moments, but two stand out most.
First, I started a petition over at Change.org demanding that Procter & Gamble (makers of Tide) strip a harmful cancer-causing chemical out of their Tide Free & Gentle® product. The petition went viral. Over 78,000 people stepped up to the plate and raised their voices, demanding that Procter & Gamble change the formulation of their Tide laundry detergent. Due to the intense consumer pressure, Procter & Gamble agreed to reformulate its detergents and reduce the levels of this toxic chemical.
Another proud moment was receiving an award at the State House in Boston for consumer advocacy. I was honored at the State House in Boston by Representative Kenneth I. Gordon and Senator Mike Barrett. Both the House of Representatives and the Senate presented me with a citation recognizing my efforts in consumer advocacy and promoting environmental education and awareness.
Wow. Looking back, both were pretty amazing!
3. What is your favorite part about advocating for green living?
Over my few years of blogging, my motto has become, “Together we can make a difference.” Why? Because we can. I have proof. I’ve seen thousands of people band together and influence some of the largest consumer product companies in the world. This is real change and real progress.
4. Advocating for a cause can be daunting. How do you keep yourself motivated when you face challenges?
Again, I’ve seen what we can do together. Not every cause is going to be successful, but the few that make it to the top make everything worthwhile.
5. How do you use social media to get the word out about living a greener lifestyle and how do you think others can use the various social platforms to give their causes voices?
Social media is such an important tool to reach a variety of audiences. It’s a fabulous way to connect and rally the troops. It enables all of us to share, discuss and debate important topics. What I love most about social media is that it allows everyone to use his or her voice. If there’s something you believe in, get out there and share! Chances are, someone else will also believe in your cause and join your campaign.
6. What are your top tips for people who want to get involved and raise awareness for global development/health or another important cause?
- Become involved.
- Create community through social media and other platforms.
- Join existing community.
- Support others who are like-minded and encourage discussion and debate.
- Go out on a limb.
- Allow your passion to shine through.