East Multnomah Soil & Water Conservation District
Dec 2, 2013
Last week I received the news that our Executive Director, Jean Fike is going to resign effective later this month. At the District, we can’t help but be saddened by this loss as Jean has led us through a very successful and exciting expansion of programs over the last nine years. At the same time, we are thrilled for Jean and the Washington Department of Natural Resources, where she has accepted a job as Manager of their Northwest Region.
During Jean’s tenure the District has expanded its ability to protect the natural and agricultural resources throughout East Multnomah County. She oversaw the establishment of a new headquarters on N. Williams Avenue in Portland, creation of a grant program that invests nearly a million dollars annually in East Multnomah County, establishment of the Headwaters Incubator Farm to train the next generation of local farmers, and expansion of a land acquisition and easement program to ensure protection for the most important natural resource and agricultural lands in East Multnomah County. During that same time established programs like the Conservation Technical Assistance and Sustainable Urban Landscapes also extended the reach and range of services they offered, protecting our most valuable riparian areas with StreamCare and teaching Naturescaping classes in underserved neighborhoods.
“Under Jean’s leadership we have seen the District create a number of cutting edge programs that have resulted in really meaningful projects to protect our environment and promote sustainable agriculture in East Multnomah County,” said Board Member Bob Sallinger. “The District’s accomplishment over the past nine years are visible across the landscape, from funding community gardens in underserved communities in our urban core to partnering to fund a new nature park in Gresham, to permanently protecting large agricultural parcels east of the urban growth boundary.”
Jean is leaving the District on strong financial footing with an outstanding management team and staff in place. The Board will adopt an executive transition strategy and start a national search for a new executive director at its December 9th Board Meeting. Please join me in thanking Jean for all she has done for District over the last 9 years and wishing her well in her new job and future adventures!
Laura Masterson, Board Chair