Rachel earned her Ph.D. in textile and apparel management at the University of Missouri-Columbia in 2018, where she studied independent retail models and strategies in the context of the sharing economy. Her 2009 M.S. work at the University of Rhode Island focused on sustainable attitudes and behaviors of textile and apparel students in an effort to develop and improve sustainability content across the curriculum.
Prior to her Ph.D., she worked in customer service and product management with the home products B Corp, Preserve, where she learned more about sustainable entrepreneurship and innovative take-back recycling systems. Her other industry experience has varied from textile finishing research and development to retail fabric and apparel sales, and alterations. She has taught courses related to textile science, consumer market research, and fashion history at the University of Rhode Island, University of Missouri, Fisher College, and the Met School in Providence.
Her research interests include collaborative relationships between the various stakeholders in local retail environments, B2B sharing enterprises, and the history and motives of sustainable apparel consumption and production. Read an article she wrote on fiber pollution.