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Chapter Leaders

Borden Beck

Executive Committee Vice-Chair

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Borden Beck

Borden Beck

Borden Beck

Borden is a born and bred Oregonian whose parents were deeply involved in conservation issues during his formative years, so he had good role modeling as a youth. He was a bit of a nature boy, fascinated by the biological world.

After college, he taught outdoor and environmental courses in a variety of settings before settling down in a 25-year career of middle school teacher in Oregon City where he has taught science, technology, and most recently, woodshop. Borden plays African music in a marimba band, eats a vegetarian diet for sociopolitical reasons, and dreams of revisiting New Zealand someday.

Borden became involved with the Sierra Club in 1994. After joining the Club as part of an Earth Day event, he wandered into a meeting of the High Desert Committee (HDC) merely out of curiosity, and that connection has remained the focus of is involvement with the Club. Borden has always had a passion for exploring the dry side of the mountains, and finds the views of the Sagebrush Sea to be most inspiring. He has led trips with the HDC for many years, some focusing on wilderness study areas, some designed to inspire and expose new folks to the high desert, and some focused on service such as pulling fence.

His primary goal in working within the Sierra Club has been to help usher in wilderness protection for the remaining wild areas of Oregon’s High Desert. That said, his interest and participation within the Club has inevitably spread to deeper involvement and intimate awareness of the broad range of environmental issues impacting Oregon. Borden’s advice to all potential Sierra Club volunteers is to “find an issue you are passionate about, find or create that niche in the Club, and engage.”

Scott Chapman

Land Use/Transportation Issue Coordinator
(Columbia Group Executive Committee)

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Scott Chapman

Scott Chapman

Scott Chapman

Scott has been in Oregon for 13 years, brought here by its natural beauty and its reputation for progressive urban planning policies and practices. After getting a Master of Urban and Regional Planning from Portland State, he has been an alternative mode (anything but the single-occupant automobile) transportation consultant for the last 10 years. Scott grew up in Illinois where he first joined the Sierra Club there over 15 years ago.

Scott has worn a number of hats as a Sierra Club volunteer leader including Group Chair, Group Political Chair, website designer and Outings Leader. He is currently the Oregon Chapter Land Use and Transportation Issue Coordinator, the Columbia Group Conservation Chair and member of the National Club’s Building Healthy Communities Committee.

Nancy Hatch

Executive Committee
(Columbia Group Representative)

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Nancy Hatch

Nancy has been active in parts of the Sierra Club’s mission her whole life. Growing up, she spent a lot of time “exploring and enjoying the planet.” She regularly went camping, hiking, backpacking, and exploring with her family, and developed a love of the outdoors. As an adult, Nancy has continued to enjoy the great outdoors and has become active with the “protect the planet” part of the Sierra Club’s mission.

After moving to Portland in 2001, Nancy first became active with the Columbia Singles Group and then started volunteering with the Building Environmental Communities campaign. She was elected to the Columbia Group’s Executive Committee in 2005 and 2007. For the past year Nancy has been the Columbia Group’s Political Committee chair.

Wes Kempfer

Nominating Committee Chair

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Wes Kempfer

Wes Kempfer was born and raised in St. Louis, Missouri. He learned an appreciation of the natural world and the outdoors going on camping and fishing trips with his parents and siblings, and while exploring the woods and streams at the edge of the suburban sprawl where he spent most of his childhood. His first awareness of the seriousness our environmental predicament came when watching all-day television coverage of the first Earth Day event in 1970. He was suspended from school that day for taking part in a protest against the junior high school dress code.

Wes has had a fascination with science and technology from childhood which eventually led to a career in computer technology. He worked in various aspects of that field most of his adult life. An ever growing concern for the deteriorating global environment led him to earn a B.A in Science from Marylhurst University in 2002 where the focus of his studies was Environmental Science.

The events of the last several years have motivated Wes to become increasingly more active in working with others in trying to reverse the destruction of the planetary systems on which we depend. Wes has three adult children and two grand children. He now lives with several loving house plants and spends his spare time gardening, cycling around town, and playing guitar and mandolin.

Sally Nunn

Executive Committee
(Many Rivers Group Representative)

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Sally Nunn

Sally Nunn

Sally Nunn

Sally Nunn, a resident of Oregon since age fifteen, has been a member of Sierra Club since 1991. She spent her formative years with her nose in the wild weeds and streams of Indiana. Sally first exposure to The Club's activities was on a trip to Steen's Mountain to camp and hike with the High Desert Committee. She subsequently joined the group and participated in introducing many new enthusiasts to the wonders of the area. Her involvement with the group extended through 2000 and the celebration of The Steens Mountain Cooperative Management and Protection Act.

Closer to home, Sally joined the Many Rivers Group ExCom in 2002 and was chosen to be their Political Chair. Sally is the recipient of the Many Rivers Group's Volunteer Award for 2007. Sally's primary interest is in advancing the club's interests through electing pro-conservation candidates at local and state levels.

She has held positions with both the Board of County Commissioners and in the State Legislature and counts among her sphere virtually all of the elected progressives in Lane County. She participates in producing a City and County "Scorecard" to help hold those elected officials accountable and inform the public on how their representatives vote on important environmental issues.

Larry Pennington

Executive Committee (At-Large Member)
Eastside Forests Committee Chair

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Larry Pennington

Larry Pennington

Larry Pennington

Larry retired to Central Oregon after thirteen years at the Department of Energy Hanford Site as an Operations Engineer and Project Manager. That followed twenty-two years in the US Navy specializing in nuclear propulsion plant operations and maintenance, and a short stint as a nuclear project engineer for Niagara Mohawk Power Corporation in snowy upstate New York.

He has always been interested in the environment and conservation, but retirement allowed him the time to be active with several organizations promoting those goals. He is an avid hiker and skier, determined to see the beauty that brought him to the mountains and deserts of Central Oregon preserved for future generations. He is a member of the Juniper Group Executive Committee, chair of the Eastside Forest Committee and Juniper Group webmaster.

Larry sees today's Sierra Club undergoing an identity crisis. The grassroots energized forest, river, and wildlife focused Sierra Club has been taken over by large donor campaigns which, however laudable, are not the traditional Sierra Club identity. A side effect of this shift is an almost total absence of support for local and Group organizing needs. His goal is to refocus the Sierra Club back to its traditional roots of local community organizing.

He also believes that more can be accomplished by working collaboratively with those you may not always agree with, than by always being a confrontational purist. The Sierra Club has great potential to preserve the forests, streams, and wildlife, but to realize that potential the Club must provide local Groups the tools to grow and be effective on their own, while at the same time working together under the Chapter with a common vision for the State of Oregon.

Gretchen Valido

Executive Committee (At-Large Member)

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Gretchen Valido

Gretchen Valido

Gretchen Valido

Growing up on five acres in a rural Chicago suburb, along with family vacations out West, are two important childhood underpinnings for Gretchen’s relationship with nature. She headed to the University of Washington in Seattle after falling in love with the West’s mountains, lived in the Bay Area much of her adult life, and moved to Bend in 1997 where she looks to the sky, mountains, forests, rivers and her garden for her daily connection with nature.

The Sierra Club became Grethchen’s outlet for pent-up frustration with ever-increasing development in Central Oregon, and since early 2002 she has served in various capacities on the Juniper Group Executive Committee: Membership Coordinator, Political Committee Chair, Co-Chair and Chair, and as Chapter Political Committee member. Since 2006 she has served on the Chapter Executive Committee and as Council of Club Leaders delegate, and in 2008 received the Charles Funk Award.

Jill Workman

Personnel Chair

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Jill Workman

Armed with a passion for nature and a gift of leadership, Jill began her activist work with the Sierra Club in 1990 as a volunteer for the Oregon Chapter's High Desert Committee. She soon expanded her work to representing the Chapter on the Malheur Lakes Basin Working Committee, and was appointed by Governor Barbara Roberts to the State of Oregon's Grazing Fee Advisory Committee.

Jill was one of Secretary of the Interior Bruce Babbitt's original appointees to the Southeast Oregon Resource Advisory Council, which advises the Bureau of Land Management and U.S. Forest Service, where she served from September 1995 through September 2006 (the final six years as Chair). Additionally, Jill chaired the Steens/Alvord Coalition from inception in 1999 until its sunset in 2005, and represented the Sierra Club in negotiations that led to the Steens Mountain Cooperative Management and Protection Act of 2000.

Jill served on the Sierra Club's Oregon Chapter Executive Committee from December 1999 through January 2010, filling the positions of Secretary (2000), Vice Chair (2001-2002), and Chair (2003-2009), and providing leadership on the Budget and Personnel Committees. Jill has served in many Sierra Club national leadership positions, including Grazing Task Force member, June 2000 through August 2002; Leadership Development Project member, May 2006 through February 2007; Wildlands Committee Secretary, August 2004 through December 2008; Wilderness & Wildlands Team Secretary, December 2008 through present; America's Wild Legacy Conservation Initiative Committee Chair, March 2006 through December 2008; Borderlands Team Secretary, December 2008 to present; Resilient Habitats Campaign Team member, October 2008 to present; America's Wild Legacy Advisory Team Chair, October 2008 to present; and the national Board of Directors Nominating Committee, April 2010 through the present, currently serving as Chair. Professionally, Jill works in Institutional Retirement and Trust at a major bank.