For more than a decade, Women’s March Executive Director Rachel O’Leary Carmona has helped to inspire, equip, and mobilize people to shape the actions and policies that affect their communities.
Rachel is a first generation Mexican American, who grew up on the Northside of Milwaukee, Wisconsin. She started her career right after high school as a domestic worker cleaning houses, spending three years doing that work before beginning her college education. She worked her way up through the nonprofit world, establishing herself as a recognized expert on building transformational online and offline communities and networks, Rachel has previously worked with with Amnesty International USA, Women for Women International, Girl Scouts of the USA, the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD), Wisconsin Public Television, and with the Mayors offices in Memphis, Tennessee and Somerville, Massachusetts.
Before accepting the Executive Director role at Women’s March, Rachel spent nearly three years serving as the Chief Operating Officer. As her first action in that role, Rachel led the organization through the planning of the 2.1 million student school walk out to protest gun violence. From there, she started the organization’s membership program, increased fundraising by 300%, conceptualized the 2019 policy platform, and developed and launched the Digital Defenders program to fight back against the alt-right trolls who are radicalizing America’s youth online.
Rachel earned her Associate’s degree from Madison Area Technical College. She went on to earn her Bachelor’s degree in African American Studies from the University of Wisconsin and her Masters in Public Policy from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government, where she focused on leadership development and non-profit management.