Jackie Medcalf

I once inherently believed that if something was wrong with my water that a community leader or government office would notify us. My family learned the hard way that this isn’t always the case. I created THEA to make sure this wouldn’t happen to another family in our community.

Jackie Young, the Founder of THEA

The ripples of my life that led to THEA.

I revealed what doctors couldn’t about my family’s health while earning a degree in Environmental Sciences.

Jackie Young, the founder of THEA, as Miss Houston Rodeo 2013
Illustration showing toxicity of San Jacinto River
Illustration explaining how companies sometimes shut their eyes to the consequences of toxic waste dumping.


Jackie Young, the founder of THEA

Jackie Medcalf (formerly Young) is a champion for public health and a catalyst for change through collaboration. Without knowing it Texas Health and Environment Alliance (THEA) was formed the day Jackie discovered what no doctor could about her and her family’s health – that their water was a culprit of their illnesses. It was in her hydrology class when she discovered the toxic environment in the area was making them sick through their water source.

Once she revealed what was causing the death of her animals, her father’s cancer, and her own battles with seizures, loss of motor function, and endometriosis, she dedicated her undergraduate studies to the environmental issues at the root of the problem. She graduated with a Bachelor of Science focused in Environmental Geology from the University of Houston-Clear Lake and knew that she wanted to continue the work. In 2015 Jackie launched Texas Health and Environment Alliance, where she has been a driving force in leading collaborative efforts across government agencies holding polluters responsible – specifically Superfund Sites.

Representing more than a half-million voices in Houston and surrounding areas, Jackie has influenced more than $115 million in clean-up efforts across THEA’s programs including, San Jacinto River Coalition, Jones Road Groundwater Plume, as well as, Fifth Ward cancer cluster. Voted 40 under 40 by Houston Business Journal, and the winner of the Environmental Justice Award, Jacquelyn Young-Medcalf is the bright mind at the forefront of THEA, an organization dedicated to keeping the public informed on the quality of their environment to protect their health. Today, as the Executive Director of THEA, Jackie safeguards the environment and water resources in Texas by working diligently to keep Houston represented in crucial conversations with local governments and the EPA Region 6, as well as, in D.C.

Talk Topics


An educational presentation that demystifies what a superfund site is and how to know if there is one near you. This insightful presentation will also inform community members what they can do to advocate for safe removal of toxic materials from their neighborhood.


An inspiring story that reminds us of the healing powers we have when a community galvanized for one cause at the San Jacinto River Coalition. With more than 50,000 comments and statements gathered, THEA’s advocacy was a driving force in EPA’s decision to require $115 million in cleanup efforts.

I don’t want your family to suffer from contaminated water the way my family did.

THEA Programs

We have three continuous programs at THEA that support our mission to safeguard Houston’s water source by tackling contamination
at the source.

Meet Me At A Town Hall

Do you believe your water is contaminated? Attend THEA’s next town hall or one of our San Jacinto, Jones Road, or Greater Fifth Ward community meetings to share your concerns.


Every drop of water counts when it comes to your health, so does every donation when it comes to our work.

Your support allows us to continue the drive for remediation of toxic materials from the San Jacinto River, Jones Road, and Greater Fifth Ward while giving us the resources to survey health and educate additional communities in Houston and surrounding areas. Support our advocacy to safeguard your water by donating today!


Join our team at an upcoming talk or town hall.