Apr 08, 2021
Rachel Powers, Executive Director
Citizens Environmental Coalition


Rachel Powers became the executive director of the Citizens’ Environmental Coalition (CEC - cechouston.org) in 2013, after volunteering for the organization for nine years (and benefitting from CEC programs and services for several years before that). 


CEC, an alliance of almost 150 organizations that work on environmental initiatives in the Houston/Gulf Coast region, has been working to improve the environment since before its incorporation in 1971. By connecting individuals and organizations, CEC works to ensure that our environmental community is recognized as a vital part of the fabric of our society.


Rachel oversees all aspects of the organization, including events (Earth Day Houston, Houston Green Films & Festivals, the Greater Houston Environmental Summit, Environmental Educators Exchange); publications (websites, weekly newsletter, social media, and a printed environmental directory); finance and development; policy; and staff, volunteers, and a robust internship program. She has served on various boards and committees, including the City of Houston's Climate Action Plan, Resilience Plan, Integrated Resource Recovery Management Plan Mayor’s Council, and Plan Houston (general plan); Harris County's Flood Control Task Force and Environmental Justice "Do Tank"; H-GAC's Bacteria Implementation Group; Port Houston’s Community Advisory Council; the committee that founded the Coalition for Environment, Equity, and Resilience; and on numerous boards and committees for a variety of nonprofit organizations.


Rachel has extensive experience working for both nonprofit organizations and local governments. Prior to working at CEC, Rachel was a senior environmental planner for the Houston-Galveston Area Council (H-GAC), managing projects relating to water quality (fecal contamination, dioxin, and PCBs), the Regional Flood Management Council, the Natural Resources Advisory Committee, and the Parks & Natural Areas subcommittee. Before that, she served as the Community Services Coordinator at the Harris County Flood Control District, coordinating communications, parks and trail partnerships, wildflower and tree planting projects, and departmental budget preparation. Rachel also has experience managing environmental education programs, summer camps, and volunteer programs at Hermann Park, Mercer Botanic Gardens, the City of Austin’s Natural Resources Division, and the YMCA. 


Rachel graduated from Rice University (B.A.) and University of Phoenix (M.B.A.). A native of Boston, Mass., Rachel enjoys family history, volunteering, civic engagement, and embarrassing her two teenage sons.