This week, Clare nominated Dame Anita Roddick. Dame Anita was a British businesswoman, human rights activist and environmental campaigner, best known as the founder of The Body Shop, a cosmetics company producing and retailing natural beauty products that shaped ethical consumerism. The company was one of the first to prohibit the use of ingredients tested on animals and one of the first to promote fair trade with third world countries. She opened the first Body Shop in 1976 with the aim of making an income for herself and her two daughters while her husband was away in South America, with the idea of providing quality skin care products in refillable containers and sample sizes, all marketed with truth rather than hype. She opened her second shop six months later. On her husband's return, he joined the business. By 1991, the Body Shop had 700 branches.
Roddick was involved in activism and campaigning for environmental and social issues, including involvement with Greenpeace and The Big Issue. In 1990, Roddick founded Children on the Edge, a charitable organisation which helps disadvantaged children in eastern Europe and Asia. COTE's mission is to help disadvantaged children affected by conflicts, natural disasters, disabilities, and HIV/AIDS.
On 13 December 2005, the National Post reported that Roddick had decided to turn her back on the world of commerce and give away her fortune, which came to £51 million ($104 million). She believed that business should offer a form of moral leadership, being a more powerful force in society than religion or government.
Dame Anita, this Wicked Women Wednesday salutes your awesomeness!
I write about power dynamics in relationships, the empowerment of women, and the ethical and moral dilemmas love can create in our lives. This is a space where I meditate on those themes and share them with the word. Who knows, my next novel may start right here...