Kate Cheney was born in 1942, descended from the founders of Manchester's Cheney Brothers Silk Company. Chappell is a 1963 graduate of Oxford School in West Hartford, Connecticut. She attended Chatham College and Sarah Lawrence College before she and her husband, cofounder Tom Chappell, moved to Kennebunk, Maine in 1968 to raise their family. Kate and Tom now share a summer home on Monhegan, Maine.
- "Kate Cheney Chappell". Bloomberg Businessweek. Retrieved December 10, 2013.
- Buckberrough, Sherry (2010). "Kate Cheney Chappell (b. 1942)". Womenartists@NewBritainMuseum. New Britain, CT: New Britain Museum of American Art. p. 70–71. ISBN 0-9724497-2-8.
- Reidy, Chris (March 22, 2006). Colgate will buy Tom's of Maine. Boston Globe
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