Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Ecology celebrates Women's History Month

by Kim Schmanke, special projects, Communication and Education

“How wrong it is for a woman to expect the man to build the world she wants, rather than to create it herself." - Anais Nin

In recognition of the 2013 Women’s History Month, Ecology is celebrating the women who did just that for Washington state’s environment. We’ll also add Gov. Chris Gregoire to Ecology’s Pushing the River environmental education exhibit that celebrates pioneering women in the environmental movement.

The project was created by Evergreen State College students in 1993 and toured the state before being purchased by Ecology. It features five women with a significant impact on Washington’s environmental movement between the 1960s and 1980s:

  • Betty Tabbutt, who became the primary lobbyist for natural resource issues on behalf of the League of Women Voters.
  • Joan Thomas, who helped found the Washington Environmental Council and played a critical role in the legislature while they were deliberating creation of the Dept. of Ecology.
  • Jackie Reid, who organized conservation districts statewide by working with the Legislature, Soil Conservation Programs and the services previously offered by Granges. 
  • Hazel Wolf, created twenty-six Audubon Society Chapters across the state, providing a concrete link between birds and their habitat needs, and thousands of Washingtonians; then went on to speak around the world for preservation of ancient forests.
  • Doris Cellarius, who organized the national Sierra Club Toxics Committee, which has consistently challenged or reversed uses and waste disposal of toxic chemicals for over 40 years in all 50 states.

Gregoire was originally considered for the exhibit. However, the artists didn’t want her selection to be misinterpreted as Gregoire had recently declared a run for Attorney General.

The exhibit is being shown in Ecology’s headquarters building lobby through March. A ceremony to add the Governor to the show will be on March 28.

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