Rachel's Network (RN) was established in 1999 by Winsome McIntosh with a grant from the McIntosh Foundation. McIntosh gathered a group of fellow women philanthropists who had committed at least $25,000 annually to environmental causes to form the “Founder's Circle” of the organization. The founders chose “Rachel's Network” as the name of their group to honor Rachel Carson (1907–64), whose book Silent Spring is credited with beginning the environmental movement in the early 1960s. Believing that collaboratively the group could be more effective than as individual voices, the founders determined to strengthen the representation of women on the boards of nonprofits, corporations, and government commissions and to use their power to protect the earth and the health of its citizens.

Seventeen women made up ...

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