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Board of Directors

Paul Atkinson, President

Paul AtkinsonPaul received his degree in Agriculture from OSU in 1974 and returned to his family farm, nestled within the foothills of the Coast Range. As the second generation, Paul has been the primary farmer for the past 35 years.

“My hope is that through NWLCT, I can help to build a cadre of local land advocates who will stand up for land in their own community which they have come to know and love intimately.”

In addition to Paul’s dedication to farming and his commitment to land use activism, he has also provided community leadership in other organizations, including Willamette Farm & Food Coalition, St. Vincent de Paul of Lane County, Crow-Applegate-Lorane School District and Land Watch Lane County.

    

Mark Wigg, Vice President/Secretary

Mark WiggMark graduated from the University of Montana with a degree in Resource Conservation/Economics and went on to study forestry, systems science, and economics in graduate schools in Oregon, Washington and Minnesota. Currently, Mark works as a consultant on environmental issues and has managed projects for the Oregon Department of Transportation, USDA Forest Service and Oregon Department of Forestry. Mark has published several
recreation maps and a mountain biking book. He has also helped establish
numerous trails in his home town of Salem, Oregon.

Mark joined the Board of Directors in the 1990’s and began serving as Vice President in 2011. Mark has provided the base line studies that document the resources being protected in the easements. Mark also serves on the Monitoring Committee of NWLCT.

      

Jan Nelson, Treasurer

Jan NelsonJan was raised in rural Minnesota. As a young child her family lived in a cabin on Big Lake in the northwoods west of Duluth. Then as a preteen she spent summers with cousins on her aunt and uncle’s farm in southern Minnesota. In 1987 she and her husband purchased 40 acres of farm and forestland in the coast range foothills west of Eugene. Now she is back outside playing in the dirt surrounded by forest
  once again.

In between then and now, after graduation she moved to Minneapolis where she became active in the new wave co-op movement beginning in the 1970’s. She spent the next 15 years organizing and working in consumer and worker owned and operated co-ops. Her political history includes serving on local committees and state boards relating to health and a healthy environment. She served as a director on the Oregon Tilth board. She was appointed to two terms on the Oregon Board of Chiropractic Examiners. As a member of the Lane County Public Health Advisory Committee, she led the effort to eliminate herbicide use and to pass an integrated vegetative management policy for the county roadsides; and further, to impose a moratorium on the use of herbicides. After that she went on to serve on the county Vegetative Management Advisory Committee. Currently she has served on the Oregon Department of Agriculture local advisory committee for the “Upper Willamette Basin Agriculture Water Quality Management Area Plan,” since 2001. She can be contacted at 541-485-1426.

    

Robert Emmons

Robert EmmonsRobert Emmons spent his early years in Tennessee and later in New Orleans, where he graduated high school. After earning B.A. degrees in Sociology and English from Florida State University in 1965, he headed west to Eugene for graduate study in English at the University of Oregon. He taught writing and literature for four years as a teaching fellow and received a Doctorate in 1974. After graduation, Emmons worked as a housing rehabilitation adviser with a federal loan program at the City of Eugene and then as a park specialist in horticulture in the City's park’s department.

Emmons has served on numerous Lane County committees and task forces over many years. He was a founding member of Sustainable Eugene Economic Development in 1983 and of Alton Baker Park for All of Us, a group that initiated a city-wide ballot measure in 1986 that protected 165 acres of Eugene's public open space from a proposed golf course and soccer fields. He served on the Lane Parks Advisory Committee from 1988-93 and served as Chair in 1992. From 1980-95 he coordinated the grass roots development, maintenance and oversight of Scobert Gardens, an edible and native plant park in Eugene's Whitaker Neighborhood. Beginning in Spring 2017, Emmons served on a task force that crafted a new master plan for Lane County Parks adopted in Fall 2018.
 
In 1996, Emmons was a founding member of LandWatch Lane County, a 501(c)(3) non-profit dedicated to the protection of Lane County's natural areas, open space, farms and forest lands. He has been president of the group since 2004 and edits the LandWatch newsletter, available at www.LandWatch.net. Since 1990 Emmons has been privileged to own, love, live on and steward 65 acres of forest and meadow in the Little Fall Creek Valley, 25 miles east of Eugene.

    

R. Burton Thomas, PhD

Burt ThomasBurt is an Assistant Research Professor in the Earth and Environmental Sciences department at Willamette University in Salem, OR. Burt, born in Missouri, is a midwesterner with roots in Oregon. His grandfather, Berlyn Farris, was a pastor at the First United Methodist Church of Eugene. For 6 years, during his graduate studies, Burt worked weekends on a small organic farm in rural Pennsylvania where he learned the value of creative problem solving.

Burt earned a PhD in biogeochemistry from Penn State University in 2008 and spent the next 6 years leading a small team of researchers at the USGS in Menlo Park, California. He and his wife, Katja Meyer, moved to Oregon in 2014 where she began a tenure-track faculty position at Willamette University. They live near downtown Salem and enjoy tending their vegetable garden with their two young children.

Burt is currently funded to work full time at the US DOE National Energy Technology Laboratory in Albany, OR studying the risks to groundwater resources from hydrocarbon drilling activities. He joined the board in the 2015.

    

Mary Milo

Mary MiloMary grew up in Southern California. Her move to Eugene, Oregon in 1965 was the beginning of a life-long appreciation for the forested hills and beauty of the Pacific Northwest. Early involvement in land zoning and forest herbicide spraying issues led her to realize that the environment needs protecting if it is to endure and continue to nourish and provide for people in the years ahead.

Mary placed a conservation easement on the deed of her own 8 acre, wooded property before it was sold, and grew enthusiastic about this means of saving land in its natural state for future generations.

She currently lives in Eugene, is a published author, and a member of several community groups committed to simplicity and sustainability.

    

In Memorium: Lynn Bowers

Lynn graduated from Reed College and Portland Art Museum School majoring in art. She was a potter, sculptor, costume designer and created residential and commercial mural paintings. Lynn also made masks for the puppets for Eugene Ballet.

Lynn founded the non-profit organization, “Forestland Dwellers” and served on the Board for “Standing Together to Outlaw Pesticides”.
 
For over 40 years, Lynn owned property in the Fox Hollow area, southwest of Eugene. In 2001, Lynn worked with NWLCT to protect her property with a conservation easement. Lynn has served NWLCT as a Board member from 2005-2018, and as President from 2011-2018. Lynn also served as Chair of the Monitoring Committee of NWLCT.

   

  Board documents
 

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