Rachel Carson was a marine biologist whose 1962 best-selling book "Silent Spring" ushered in a national ban on DDT and other pesticides. While Carson didn't technically discover anything, the book inspired a grassroots movement that led to the formation of the federal Environmental Protection Agency.
Carson wrote three marine life books prior to her best-seller "Silent Spring." While Carson's book and beliefs fueled major developments, she was met with harsh criticism from chemical companies, the former Secretary of Agriculture Ezra Taft Benson and many others, according to the National Women's History Museum. Her critics claimed she wanted to eliminate pesticides, but Carson's stance in her book called for an ecological approach to pest control.