Keystone Ladies

A few of the women fiercely defending ecosystems the world over.


World Bank Photo Collection/FlickrWorld Bank Photo Collection/FlickrJane Goodall: Primatologist who showed the world that a female scientist could work alone in the wilderness.

Graeme Robertson/ZUMAGraeme Robertson/ZUMAWangari Maathai: Before her death last year, she worked with women in Kenya’s rural villages to plant trees. Forty-seven million seedlings later, she won a Nobel Prize.

Kalyan VarmaKalyan VarmaKrithi Karanth: Has worked wonders in India’s national parks, especially in keeping the peace between tigers and people.

RanDall JimenezRanDall JimenezJoan Kleypas: Figured out that warmer temperatures lead to coral reef bleaching, which kills not only the reef but the countless species that depend on it.

Leela Hazzah, third from the left.: Philip BriggsLeela Hazzah, third from the left. Philip BriggsLeela Hazzah: This young Egyptian American’s work with rural communities has turned lion hunters into lion guardians.

Courtesy of Orangutan Foundation InternationalCourtesy of Orangutan Foundation InternationalBiruté Galdikas: The 65-year-old orangutan expert once told the New York Times that the reason she wasn’t famous was that “I’ve been in Borneo all these years, tracking an elusive and solitary animal.”

LUMCONLUMCONNancy Rabalais: Tirelessly collecting samples while dodging hurricanes, Rabalais discovered that farming runoff was turning parts of the Gulf of Mexico into dead zones.

Courtesy of the Penguin ProjectCourtesy of the Penguin ProjectP. Dee Boersma: This biologist’s long stretches in Argentina have shed much-needed light on how climate change (and marauding tourists) threaten penguins.

DOES IT FEEL LIKE POLITICS IS AT A BREAKING POINT?

Headshot of Editor in Chief of Mother Jones, Clara Jeffery

It sure feels that way to me, and here at Mother Jones, we’ve been thinking a lot about what journalism needs to do differently, and how we can have the biggest impact.

We kept coming back to one word: corruption. Democracy and the rule of law being undermined by those with wealth and power for their own gain. So we're launching an ambitious Mother Jones Corruption Project to do deep, time-intensive reporting on systemic corruption, and asking the MoJo community to help crowdfund it.

We aim to hire, build a team, and give them the time and space needed to understand how we got here and how we might get out. We want to dig into the forces and decisions that have allowed massive conflicts of interest, influence peddling, and win-at-all-costs politics to flourish.

It's unlike anything we've done, and we have seed funding to get started, but we're looking to raise $500,000 from readers by July when we'll be making key budgeting decisions—and the more resources we have by then, the deeper we can dig. If our plan sounds good to you, please help kickstart it with a tax-deductible donation today.

Thanks for reading—whether or not you can pitch in today, or ever, I'm glad you're with us.

Signed by Clara Jeffery

Clara Jeffery, Editor-in-Chief

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