Dr. Rae Wynn Grant on radical solutions and the power of possibility

Woman in braids holding a yellow snake up
Dr. Rae Wynn Grant headshot

Dr. Rae Wynn Grant is a scientist, conservationist, and advocate for equity and justice. As a child, after watching Mutual of Omaha’s Wild Kingdom, she wanted to become a nature show host but thought “you had to cross oceans to find nature.” Now, as the new cohost of Wild Kingdom, Rae brings nature into homes across the country. A member of WWF’s National Council, Rae lives in California with her husband and two children.

What does it mean to you to be the new cohost of Mutual of Omaha’s Wild Kingdom?

Honestly, I’m still processing it. I’ve wanted to host a nature show for so long. That’s what led me to become a wildlife ecologist. I wanted to travel the world and see tigers, whales, and other wildlife. But I wasn’t actively pursuing my dream of hosting a show, so when I got the offer, it felt so surreal. And if the show can do for other girls what it did for me, that would be extraordinary.

Can you speak about the importance of equity and justice to conservation?

Too many global crises are caused by injustice. If we want to save the planet, we need radical solutions that help heal the planet and address injustice everywhere it exists. And we have to end systemic racism and focus on removing barriers that prevent people from being excellent in their work and lives.

What gives you hope for the future?

I’m a mom of two, and raising these little people who will inherit this world offers a lot of hope. I also get to spend a lot of time in nature, and its resilience is remarkable. But realism is important, too. Dr. Ayana Elizabeth Johnson, an environmental scientist and climate expert, speaks about holding on to possibility more than hope. Things can go well, or they can go horribly, or somewhere in between. Using that possibility lens is a more realistic way of looking at things and motivating yourself toward solutions.

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