A native of Kansas, Rachel grew up not far from The Land Institute. Her childhood was deeply rooted in the ecology of the prairie, an understanding ingrained through the hands-on restoration of her family’s tallgrass preserve near Salina. Rachel went on to complete her BA at New York University’s Gallatin School where she studied the connections and relationships between humans and the biotic and abiotic ecosphere through performance studies, ethnography, evolutionary biology and the great books of philosophy upon which our dualistic culture and ideologies were built. She later completed a Master of Business Administration at the Bloch School of Management at University of Missouri, Kansas City. Her career spans nearly 20 years, and encompasses a diversity of professional experiences in hospitality, community engagement and resilient city planning, energy finance and investor relations, communications, health care consulting, strategy, and operations. After 15 years living in urban areas, Rachel returned to the prairie to reconnect her young family with her home place. The move home to Salina brought her to The Land Institute. In over five years at The Land, Rachel also served as Chief Operating Officer under both Wes Jackson and Fred Iutzi and then as Chief Strategy Officer. Rachel became Acting President of The Land Institute on July 1, 2020. She resides in Austin, TX with her husband and two young boys.