Rachel Payne

Rachel Payne is the CEO and co-founder of FEM Inc., a holding company focused on research and development at the intersection of media, technology and gender. In 2015, FEM Inc. launched Prizma, an Artificial Intelligence tech startup for major media, telecom and tech companies. Prizma was acquired by Nielsen / Gracenote in June 2018.

She has built an exceptional career as a technology executive and entrepreneur, while actively involved in philanthropic activities. A recognized thought leader in the advancement of technology to reshape our world, she champions policies that make a meaningful place for everyone in the new economy. 

After graduation, Rachel worked for International Data Group and the publisher PC World to help build their digital network, which is where she discovered the power of technology and joined the first wave of Internet companies in Silicon Valley, including eBay, Hotwire and Razorfish.

Rachel returned to school at Stanford Graduate School of Business, studying public management and international development, working in Mexico City and Kampala for microfinance organizations that provide financial services and access to technology for low-income individuals in Latin America and Africa. After earning her MBA, Rachel joined the founding team of Google.org, the philanthropic arm of Google, which focused on Poverty Alleviation and Climate Change in their grants, projects and investments. Rachel and the early Google.org executives created the first blueprint for this type of organization – a hybrid corporate philanthropy and investment vehicle.

While at Google, Rachel led International Business Operations in Emerging Markets, spending several years living and working in sub-Saharan Africa. Rachel served as Country Manager, Africa Leadership Team, with the goal of building the foundation for an Internet Economy. She focused on infrastructure, localization, strategic partnerships, and public policy to ensure broad-based participation in the opportunities created by mobile phones and emerging technologies. Her team’s work was recognized in 2010, where she accepted Google’s first award at Mobile World Congress for “Best Mobile Apps for Economic and Social Development” for building and scaling critical mobile services in agriculture, trade and health that serve people in poor, rural areas. She also worked with heads of state on policy relating to Internet access and job creation. She moved back to Southern California to lead the Technology vertical for Google, managing cross-platform media sales teams. She later became Principal, Global Strategic Alliances, and managed Google’s most important strategic partnerships in Media & Entertainment 

Rachel served on the Board of Directors for BRAC USA, ranked the #1 NGO in the world. She is a Guest Lecturer on Business Applications of Artificial Intelligence at Loyola Marymount University.

3 words to describe Nature?

Profound. Awe-inspiring. Harmony

3 things Nature taught you?

Self discovery

Infinite possibility


3 most treasured Nature spots?

Patagonia, Argentina

Amazon, Peru

Pacific Ocean (anywhere!!!)

When you look at the ocean, it makes you feel…?

Free, joyful, in alignment

When you see a forest, it makes you feel…?

Protected, safe, joy

When you see a volcano, it makes you feel…?

Power, feminine, creation

When you see a sunrise or sunset, it makes you feel…?

Sublime, tranquility, peace

When you hear thunder, it makes you feel…?

Exuberant, curious, alive

When you hear the wind howling, it makes you feel…?

Curious, respect, humble

Are you an Ocean, Mountain, Forest, or Desert person?

All of the above, don’t make me pick one.

On a scale of 1 to 10, how important is Nature to your well-being?


Share with us a childhood nature memory?

As a child, we want camping a lot in National Parks like Bryce Canyon and Zion. Our parents taught us  about living on the land in harmony with nature, appreciating the bounty and beauty, reminding us we were only visitors and needed to show respect and care. These golden memories are filled with joy and awe.