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Spotlight » Community » Jarid Manos


Jarid Manos

Other Titles:Environmentalist, Green Leader, Author
Vegan Athlete
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Emerging as one of the nation’s most promising leaders of the green crusade, Jarid Manos is at the helm of the new ecological health movement helping young people heal themselves by healing the Earth.

Manos is founder and CEO of Great Plains Restoration Council. Based in Houston, Texas, the organization works to restore and protect the nation’s shattered prairies and plains through developing youth leaders in ecological health. While scientists, policy makers and environmental stewards discuss America’s most affected and least protected prairies and plains, Manos is taking diligent action toward saving the world’s most precious resources –nature and humans – from the brink of extinction.

Once a drug dealer on the tough streets of New York, Manos struggled through a childhood of neglect, racism, and sexual abuse while growing up in rural Ohio and eventually ran away to Texas as a teen. Angry, alienated and filled with discontent, he embraced a life of crime drifting between New York and Texas while desperately longing to become whole spiritually and physically. He found himself as a wanderer with little to eat or drink, sleeping under trees, and trying to find a place of refuge in the destroyed landscape of the wildness left on the Great Plains.

It was when Manos learned of the Buffalo Commons, an idea hatched in late 1980s by two Rutgers scholars to reintroduce buffalo to under populated counties in middle America, that he was inspired with a vision. He transformed his life, became a vegan, and created a career in physical therapy and exercise physiology. He began networking with social justice and environmental groups and learned how to organize, eventually transforming into a social revolutionary seeking to facilitate harmony and foster a primal connection to the natural world.

In 1999, he founded the Great Plains Restoration Council with the goal to help troubled and disadvantaged youth and young adults heal themselves through healing some of America's most damaged ecosystems.

Manos recruits young inner city victims of violence and poverty in Fort Worth and puts them to work restoring the prairie. With its’ signature social programs, Restoration Not Incarceration™ and Plains Youth InterACTION™: The Positive Health Impact for People and Prairies, the organization restores the prairies, bayous, and wetlands Greater Houston and the Gulf Coast shore with young adults and juveniles in the Harris County Corrections System. His group has ceased housing developments on a southern tallgrass prairie near Fort Worth and is working to re-establish a prairie dog town on a new reserve in West Texas. Partnering with the Oglala Lakota people, the group has also established a long-term project to connect prairie around Badlands National Park into a million-acre public grassland.

Manos shares his journey to self-discovery in his first literary contribution, “Ghetto Plainsman,” a gritty, raw and spiritual chronicle of triumph over humiliation, self-defeat, anger and violence. His story of redemption takes readers on a chaotic journey between urban survival and the life-or-death struggles of the ravaged American Great Plains.

Manos was selected as a member of the Obama administration’s new Relevancy Committee, through the National Park Service, to help diverse communities connect to wild nature as a matter of our own public health. He also serves on the Board of Directors of the Black Vegetarian Society of Texas.

As an author, philanthropic leader, activist, and empowerment speaker, he leads national conversations that weave a common thread between the destruction and preservation of Earth and self, aiming to impact humanity through a widespread adoption and advocacy.

He has appeared in the New York Times, Huffington Post, Dallas Morning News, Denver Post, Fort Worth Star-Telegram, USA Today, Smithsonian, Congressional Quarterly, Houston Chronicle, Albuquerque Journal, among many others. He is frequently featured guest speaker for churches, organizations, rallies, conferences, businesses, chambers of commerce, and schools and universities nationwide. He is currently working on his penning his second book; an American novel entailed Her Blue-Watered Streets.

For more information on Social Transformation Expert and Jarid Manos, please visit Follow Jarid Manos on Twitter @JaridManos and
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