A long-time officer and administrator of the Washington State Department of Corrections, Dan Pacholke co-founded the Sustainability in Prisons Project with Dr. Nalini Nadkarni of The Evergreen State College. In 2003, while serving as the superintendent of the Cedar Creek Corrections Center, Dan implemented many cost-saving conservation initiatives involving both offenders and correctional staff. Activities ranged from recycling, worm composting and rainwater catchment systems to beekeeping, horticulture and an organic garden that supports the prison’s food services. Later, as the superintendent of the Stafford Creek Corrections Center, he initiated large-scale sustainable operations to lessen the financial and environmental impacts of the facility’s 2000 inmates, 600 staff and expansive 210-acre site. As the agency’s assistant secretary of corrections, Dan has formalized the Sustainability in Prisons Project through an unprecedented cooperative agreement with The Evergreen State College. Today he spearheads sustainable operations system-wide and advances rehabilitative educational programs such as K-9 Rescue in which inmates train troubled dogs for adoption. Dan is a graduate of The Evergreen State College.
Scott Bergford, owner of Scott Homes, Inc. has spent his entire home building career searching for the balance between energy efficiency and affordability. For nearly 30 years, Scott has worked to build homes that exceed building codes and use little energy to run. Lately, he launched Northwest Energy Team, a business that retrofits existing homes for greater energy efficiency.
He is active locally, nationally and internationally, speaking and learning about green building practices. Scott feels there is inestimable value in collaboration between new discoveries and proven “traditional” building technologies. His work has included projects in Norway, Romania, Mexico and Nicaragua and well as in Washington State.
Over the past 25+ years, Ron has founded several businesses and served as a Director for economic development organizations and consultant to business owners, banks, municipalities, tribes, ports, non-profits, state and federal agencies and tourism-marketing organizations.
He has facilitated well-recognized public-private partnerships and research projects with national labs; organized numerous special events, seminars, and industry conferences; created and managed marketing programs, economic impact analyses, feasibility studies, business plans, research projects with a national labs, and served on several governor-appointed economic development task forces. Accomplishments include playing a lead role in securing over $12 million for public infrastructure and $65 million in private sector financing for projects ranging from ski resorts to lumber mills - creating over 1200 jobs with payrolls exceeding $40 million.
His special talent is as a strategist and catalyst for business activity linked to emergent technologies, new products, and changing demographics, i.e., organizing forums and leading studies that helped launch a regional wine industry; assisting in recruitment of the first data center and first Chinese investment for manufacturing in Eastern Washington; founding the Greater Columbia Water Trail to position North Central Washington as a destination for paddlers; and spearheading the introduction of plug-in vehicle technology and transportation concepts to policy makers and business interests in Washington State.
To advance the latter project, in 2011 he founded Plug In North Central Washington, LLC to develop and promote vehicle electrification and electric vehicle tourism in a 3-county region. In June, 2012, Ron presided over the organization's successful launch of the USA's first 'Electric-Vehicle Friendly' National Scenic Byway featuring a dozen charging stations over a 100+ mile mountain pass, providing the means for Seattle-to-Wenatchee (North Central Washington) electric vehicle travel.
Shallin Busch is a research ecologist at NOAA’s Northwest Fisheries Science Center (NWSFC). She studies how environmental change influences animal physiology and impacts populations and communities. Her current research focuses on how ocean acidification may impact North Pacific ecosystems. Using the NWFSC ocean acidification experimental system, Dr. Busch conducts experiments to explore how species of economic, ecologic, or conservation concern respond to changes in ocean carbon chemistry. To date, these species include geoduck, Pacific oyster, mussels, manila clam, Pacific herring, China rockfish, surf smelt, Dungeness crab, krill, and copepods. Dr. Busch uses ecological models to explore how acidification’s impacts on susceptible species cascade through food webs, via trophic interactions, to affect other species. By integrating results from organismal to ecosystem levels, Dr. Busch aims to generate data relevant to management of species and communities in a changing environment. Dr. Busch holds a doctorate in Zoology from the University of Washington and an undergraduate degree in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology from Princeton University.
As GRuB’s Co-Founder and now Executive Director, I’ve had the opportunity to grow an idea from its seed into a community- loved and supported organization. GRuB was born in 2001 from the merger of two grassroots organizations. The Kitchen Garden Project was established in 1993 in order to partner with low-income people to establish productive vegetable gardens. The Sister Holly Garden Project, established in 1997, offered garden- based educational opportunities to youth and seniors. Since that time, GRuB has been dedicated to building a just, sustainable food system by creating nurturing and engaging leadership opportunities for youth and adults. We inspire positive personal and community change by bringing people together around food and agriculture.