2017 has been a busy year for the 350PDX Board. Luckily, leaders from the non-profit, small-business, and accounting sectors stepped up to help the organization tackle some big projects that happen behind the scenes. Since December 2016, we welcomed four new board members, said goodbye to two, and as 2017 draws to a close we are ramping up recruitment to add more next year.
Here are the newest members of our board!
Lucy Wong joined the board in 2017. The deep connection between poverty and climate change led Lucy into activism. Her skills in small-business managing at the Dragonfly Coffeehouse & Bakery and her overall background and perspecitve have been incredible assets in helping the organization work on improving everything from governance policies, finances, board transparency, communication, and leadership development. Lucy is also helping the board do the important and necessary work on millennial-leadership development and inclusion. Lastly, Lucy has been active with 350PDX since it’s earliest days (since 2013) and continues to be active on several of our teams and working groups, giving her a strong understanding of how the organization operates in the field. On top of all this, we really appreciate Lucy’s positive attitude and quick smile!
Leigh Broussard also joined our board this year as our new treasurer. Leigh is a CPA who moved to Portland fifteen years ago from Southern California. Since moving to Portland she has specialized in Non-Profit accounting. Her undergraduate degree was from Immaculate Heart College where she learned how to be an activist. She has a masters degree in public health which she worked in before becoming a CPA. Leigh has been a Certified Scuba diver for fifty years and recently volunteered on projects to survey coral reefs in the Pacific and Indian Oceans. Her concerns about climate change have been heightened since her trip last year to the Indian Ocean. Leigh’s accounting knowledge has been indispensable in helping the board understand and analyze its budget and finances. Together with board member Sandy Polishuk, she does a lot of behind-the-scenes work to ensure that the organization stays on track to meeting its fiduciary responsibilities.
Katy Kolker is a non-profit professional who is best known for her work as the founder and Executive Director of Portland Fruit Tree Project where she served for 10 years and earned numerous awards for her leadership. She is now a full-time mother of her 3-year-old daughter and infant son. Katy grew up in Baltimore and has lived in Portland since 2002. Her life-long passion and commitment to social justice and environmental sustainability led her to 350PDX, which she has admired since its inception. She joined the board in April 2017 and brings a wealth of experience in transforming a small non-profit into a larger organization. This knowledge will be essential for 350PDX in the coming years!
Deb Lev worked in natural resources management for more than 30 years and holds an MS degree in Forest Ecology. She has been helping the organization clarify its governance policies and supports team leadership. She was recently trained as a climate leader by Al Gore and the Climate Reality Project. Deb previously served on boards of the Society for Ecological Restoration and the Intertwine Alliance. In addition to her extensive management and board experience, Deb is an excellent listener, a problem solver, and an adventurous spirit. Her current volunteer activities with 350PDX include co-lead of the NW Neighborhood Team and regular involvement with PERS Divest Team, Legislative Team, and Decision Making Working Group.
We also said goodbye to two board members in 2017: Lenny Dee and Danny Thiemann.
Lenny Dee was a founding board member, and remains active in the organization. Lenny has worked tirelessly for 350PDX from the beginning, and has had a direct, positive impact on our growth over the last ~4 years, in so many ways. To name just two — our neighborhood teams were Lenny’s brain child, and Lenny has been (and continues to be) 350PDX’s driving force behind the Portland Just Energy Transition.
Danny Thiemann served on the board from early 2015 and was active in the communications team. A civil rights lawyer, Danny’s legal expertise has been invaluable on the board, as was his gentle yet persistent focus on inclusivity. Danny leaves 350PDX to be legal counsel at Earth Justice in San Francisco — our loss is the world’s gain and we wish him all the best in this new and exciting position!
We will miss Lenny and Danny on the board, and we thank them for their service and commitment to our mission!
Finally, we are looking to add more board members again in 2018! If you are a team player with an interest and aptitude for working behind the scenes, and a strong commitment to the 350PDX mission — or know someone else who might be — please contact Bernadette (firstname.lastname@example.org). We continue to strive to build a diverse and inclusive board; young people, people of color, native American and frontline community members are particularly encouraged to apply.
350PDX functions because of a wide variety and deep field of volunteer leaders. The board holds monthly meetings. As always, please contact the board if you would like to attend a meeting or have suggestions or feedback for the board. We’d love to hear from you. You can learn more about the organization’s other leadership here.