Rare observation: “The people and the culture make Rare Rare (and rare). The essence of Rare is the strong push to find solutions that work and scale them. Along the way, there is always a strong emphasis on collecting data, learning from it, and constantly improving the process and programs. Rare is a unique organization that uses education, pride, and tenacity to help both people and nature.”
First day at Rare: Brett went bird watching in Monteverde, Costa Rica, with a ravenous group of listers. “I think one of them stepped over me on a trail to get a look at a bellbird,” says Brett. “And my thought was, ‘These people are passionate about nature.’ I was hooked.”
Interests: conservation, experiencing the outdoors; fly fishing and birding.
Other boards: The Nature Conservancy - Idaho Chapter; The Nature Conservancy - Argentina, Patagonia; Trout Unlimited
Rare observation: “Rare is transparent. It tries many things and isn't afraid to admit when something does not work. However, when something does work — when they find that “bright spot” that is changing how people live and work in their environment — they spread it far and wide. Inspired vision, remarkable leadership, and a fantastic team!”
Rare is special because of the people: staff, Rare Fellows, partners and board members. Each and every one of them inspires me, encourages me and makes me proud of the work Rare does and the legacy we are leaving.”
Rare fact: Paul serves as both a staff member and trustee. He has worked at Rare for 26 years beginning when there were just two staff, a total budget of less than $100,000 and an office smaller than the average kitchen. When originally asked to join Rare, Paul pledged to stay for at least ten years so long as it remained an innovative, creative and fun place to work. He says, “It has — and still is — a quarter of a century later.”
The critical ingredient for conservation success — or failure — is the support and participation of local populations. Rare is one of the few conservation organizations dedicated to the idea that
conservation is about people.”
I’ve been involved with Rare in Mexico and Latin America for over a decade. Rare’s ability to engage local communities and to strengthen local organizations has impressed me every step along the way. I am proud to be part of the Rare family.”
Other boards and involvements: President and co-founder of Niños y Crías, Fundación Pedro y Elena Hernandez, Fondo Nacional Para la Comunicación y Educación Ambiental, owner of Hotel Las Nubes de Holbox
Rare Pride: “I am proud of the courage and vision Rare’s staff and board demonstrated by launching Fish Forever, an ambitious global effort to save nearshore fisheries.”
Current position:Founder & CEO, Generate Capital, Inc.
Rare pride: Whenever anyone gets up to speak about Rare, their demeanor changes, and the pride they have in their own affiliation with Rare is palpable. Think about the greatest brands or organizations that have touched you in your life — do any of them do that?
The evolution of Rare has been remarkable. While we are 20 times bigger now in terms of staff and budget than in 1996, we still retain the unique culture that attracted me to Rare in the first place. I love the spirit of Rare.”
Current interests: investor in real estate and green tech companies
Other boards: Flamboyan Foundation, Sapientis, CCM Group
Rare observation: “The people make Rare special. From Brett to the most recent hire, from the board chair to our newest board member, there is a shared commitment to conservation and a shared passion for doing the right thing, respecting each other and our partners, and being innovative thinkers.”
Current position: Staff writer for the Christian Science Monitor
Other board: Jarrow Montessori
Why conservation? “I feel an immense wonder and awe at the diversity of life, ecosystems and landscapes we have on this planet and a sense of urgency about the need to protect it. While it can be discouraging to see how much nature we’ve already lost, I feel a deep responsibility to do whatever is possible to conserve what remains for future generations.”
Current interests: Working landscapes, birdwatching, urban hike and bike trails
Other boards The Nature Conservancy of Montana; The Nature Conservancy of Ohio, honorary life trustee; Smith College, Center for the Environment, Ecological Design and Sustainability (CEEDS)
Rare goal: “I want Rare to become a household name. I want all of us to have pride in the natural systems that support our lives. Valuing our natural resources, finding sustainable solutions to problems and harnessing the power of people’s pride to make changes for conservation. Rare offers us a bright path forward.”
Current position: Managing Director, Global Health and Development at Russell Reynolds Associates
Other board: Advisory Board of the Global Development Incubator
Why conservation? “Initially, it was a trapper’s cabin in an isolated basin in Montana’s Rocky Mountains that drew my attention to the challenges of preserving the high meadows for elk and grizzly migrations. The passion of the people and the urgency of the topic affected me.”
Other Boards: The Nature Conservancy - Illinois chapter; Openlands (Chicago); Field Museum Science Action Committee; BirdLife International/Audubon US Stewardship Council (chair); several conservation advisory boards; Bobolink Foundation (chairman)
Rare fact: "My husband I danced in a conga line on a beach in Argentina with a human-sized red knot mascot in the lead."
Why conservation? “Because of the beauty and endless diversity of nature, the species and ecosystems that don’t have a voice.”