Today we join countries around the world in celebrating International Women’s Day. Rubicon thinks just about all women rock, but we have a particularly special place in our hearts for the sustainability-focused ladies out there. We are proud to work alongside these inspiring thought leaders as they work diligently and creatively to solve some of the world’s greatest problems. Here are four women who are quite frankly just killing it on a daily basis, and whom we couldn’t help but acknowledge:
- Ellen MacArthur. Not only did this incredible woman single handedly sail around the globe at just 24 years old – a 27,000-mile voyage – but also she did it faster than anyone else had ever done before. Spending just over 71 days at sea gave Ellen a very real understanding of what it means to rely on a finite supply of resources. When she returned to dry land, she founded the Ellen MacArthur Foundation to inspire the next generation to re-think, re-design and build a positive future through a more circular economy. Today she works with influential businesses like Google and Nike to demonstrate circular innovation at scale.
- Laurene Powell Jobs. Founder of the Emerson Collective, Laurene is dedicated to removing barriers to opportunity so people can live to their full potential. One of the primary pillars of Emerson Collective is justice, including environmental justice. Laurene leads Emerson Collective in the fight against environmental injustices that impact rural and impoverished communities, from food deserts to toxic landfills. Most recently, Laurene has helped the organization to more closely consider “humanitech” in its work, or the ability to use technology to help humanity. Side note: she married Steve Jobs.
- Stephanie Stuckey Benfield. For more than two decades, Stephanie has worked in the public sector to defend her community’s natural resources and environment. While serving as a Georgia State Representative for 14 years, Stephanie participated in the Judiciary and Natural Resources Committees. She then went on to serve as Executive Director of GreenLaw, an Atlanta-based public interest law firm dedicated to giving Georgia’s environment its day in court. Later, Stephanie was appointed by Mayor Kasim Reed to be Director of Sustainability for the City of Atlanta, and most recently, she was named the City’s Chief Resilience Officer. In her current role, Stephanie works in conjunction with the Rockefeller Foundation’s 100 Resilient Cities initiative to enable urban areas to become more resilient to 21stcentury challenges. Oh yeah, and she has 2 rad kids.
- Elizabeth Montoya. Elizabeth has dedicated her career to sustainability, first as an advocate and educator with the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) and most recently in a leadership role with Rubicon Global. While at USGBC, Elizabeth managed LEED Education programs at chapters across the nation. Elizabeth first joined Rubicon leading sustainability initiatives and running the company’s corporate social responsibility (CSR) programs, helping us achieve B-Corp certification. She now serves as a vice president for the company, helping to drive investments in social entrepreneurship.
We know these influential women, and many others around the world, are shaping a better future for our planet. Who are you celebrating this International Women’s Day?