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Women of Mother Nature

By: Erin Kim

Throughout history, numerous environmentalists and activists have worked vigorously to ensure the safety and conservation of our environment. In honor of National Women’s History Month, let us celebrate the heroines of our planet. 

Jane Addams (1860~1935)

Jane Addams was an environmental and social activist, an author, and a philosopher. Throughout her career, Addams uncovered concerns regarding environmental health and sought to find environmental equality for all people, regardless of race, ethnicity, and income rate. As a result of her work, in 1931, Addams became the first American woman to be awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. 

Jane Goodall (1934~)

Jane Goodall is an English primatologist and anthropologist, widely known for her research and work with chimpanzees. From a young age, Goodall displayed significant interest in animals. At 26, Goodall traveled to Tanzania to further extend her investigation and knowledge regarding the then scarcely-known creature, the chimpanzee. As a result of her research, sacrifices, and love for animals, Goodall not only showed everyone the world of chimpanzees but encouraged the next generation to involve themselves in conserving wildlife, animals, and the environment. Goodall still travels the world today and works to save chimpanzees from extinction. 

Mollie Beattie (1947~1996)

Mollie Beattie was an American conservationist, and the first-ever woman to be appointed the director of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Through her position, Beattie conserved crucial environmental laws such as the Endangered Species and Clean Water Acts. Before her death, Beattie created a total of fifteen new wildlife refuges and reintroduced the grey wolf in Yellowstone, leaving an admirable legacy. In the future, she would be recognized as a Women's History Month Honoree as an honor of her work. 

Tippi Degre (1990~)

Tippi Degre is a French author and conservationist, who is widely known for her renowned autobiography, Tippi, My Book of Africa. Her numerous documentations and books recall stories of her childhood in Africa, where she was born and raised closely with nature and animals. Now, Tippi works to preserve and promote the bond between the youth and animals and flexibly involves herself in wildlife conservation and the documentary film industry. 

Hilda Lucia Solis (1957~)

Hilda Lucia Solis is the first Latina woman to serve in the U.S. Senate and Cabinet. Solis is mostly known for her work on environmental issues as an active member of the Committee on Energy and Commerce, the Committee on Natural Resources, and the Select Committee on Energy Independence and Global Warming. In addition, Solis acted to further prioritize green-collar jobs and to create and/or enlarge wilderness areas. 

Frances Beinecke (1949~)

American environmentalist Frances Beinecke is the current president of the Natural Resources Defense Council and was appointed to the National Commission on the BP Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill and Offshore Drilling by President Barack Obama. Due to her diligent work and love for the environment, she was awarded the Rachel Carson Award, a prestigious award that honors female leaders impacting the environment and planet. 

Rachel Carson (1907~1964)

Rachel Carson was a marine biologist and writer in America and was later honored her legacy by having an award named after her, which would later celebrate women of the future generation involved in environmental conservation. Before her death, Carson wrote multiple articles that inspired a myriad of people about the beauty of the planet and the importance of protecting it. One of her most notable writings is Silent Spring, an environmental science book that criticized the use of toxic pesticides and its impacts. This book was later discussed in a presidential commission and ultimately led to the banning of DDT (Dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane; a pesticide that spreads malaria). Carson continues to inspire women and her legacy is not forgotten.

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