Date of Birth
Lydia M. Pena, SL
Merle Chambers’ work as a philanthropist, businesswoman, and lawyer stands out as a model to all. She created the Chambers Family Fund to support organizations that expand opportunities for women and girls, improve early care and education of children, enhance democratic values, and enrich the arts. A founding member of the Women’s Foundation, its president in 1992, and the first woman to serve on the Temple Hoyne Buell Foundation Board of Trustees, Chambers provided the lead gift to establish the Merle Catherine Chambers Center for the Advancement of Women at the University of Denver. Her business endeavors include 16 years managing Axem Resources, where she pioneered women’s leadership and family friendly practices in the male-dominated oil and gas industry. She also chaired the executive committee of Clipper Exxpress, a family-owned multi-modal transportation firm, and is president and CEO of Leith Ventures, a private investment company. Merle holds degrees from the University of California’s Hastings College of Law and the University of Denver’s Graduate Tax Program. Chambers is the third woman to have reached both the North and South Poles.