Oversight of the day-to-day operations is the responsibility of the Executive Director/CEO. The Executive Director/CEO works in cooperation with the OMRI Management Team, which is comprised of the Executive Director/CEO, the Review Program and Quality Director, the Technical Director, the Marketing Director and the Operations Director. The Management Team is responsible for review and maintenance of the quality system.
Peggy Miars (phone extension: 102) came to OMRI in 2010 from California Certified Organic Farmers (CCOF), where she served for six years as the Executive Director/CEO. She holds a Bachelor of Business Administration degree from Western Michigan University and completed post-graduate courses in nonprofit management at Regis University in Colorado Springs. Peggy has worked in the organic industry for nearly 20 years, previously in marketing and management positions with Earthbound Farm, Whole Foods Market, Granary Market, various nonprofit organizations, and her own marketing consulting business. She completed IOIA inspector training for crops in 2007 and has had further IOIA training in both the NOP and Canadian Organic Standards. Peggy is the only North American on the World Board of IFOAM-Organics International and serves on the Board of Directors for the International Organic Accreditation Service (IOAS). She volunteers in the cattery at the local humane society and takes homeless dogs to radio and TV stations to promote their adoption.
Rubi Harney (phone extension: 133) has experience working as a paralegal and an executive assistant at a law firm for six years. Raised in a bilingual and bi-cultural household, Rubi learned from her parents at an early age the value of fairness, equality, the duty of being a good citizen and productive member of our community. As a lifelong Eugenian, she thoroughly enjoys the beauty and the great variety of outdoor experiences that Oregon has to offer her and her family.
Johanna Mirenda (phone extension: 129) holds a bachelor's degree in Horticultural Science with a minor in Biology from Pennsylvania State University, and is currently enrolled in a master's program in Sustainable Food Systems at Green Mountain College. She studied agriculture and ecology in Peru and New Zealand, and has several years of academic research experience in plant nutrition. Prior to joining OMRI, she served as the Policy Director for Pennsylvania Certified Organic (PCO), a USDA-accredited certification agency. Johanna works remotely from New Hampshire, where she lives with her husband Jason and their dog Moose.
Review Program and Quality Director
Kelsey McKee (phone extension: 126) holds a B.S. in Biochemistry and Biophysics from Oregon State University. She has professional experience working as the Quality Assurance Manager in a certified organic food manufacturing facility, as well as laboratory experience working in a NELAC Institute-certified environmental laboratory.
Amy Bradsher (phone extension: 106) graduated from the University of California at Berkeley with a Bachelor’s degree in Anthropology. She has worked in several environmental and educational nonprofit organizations throughout Eugene and the San Francisco Bay Area, coordinating programs and outreach efforts. She studied organic agriculture while working with Ecology Action, a nonprofit focused on promoting low-input Biointensive farming. Amy also completed IOIA training for the USDA and Canadian Organic Standards, and she has been with OMRI since 2009.
Eliza Kashinsky (phone extension: 125) received a B.A. in Political Science from SUNY Albany. She served in various operational roles at Freedom House, a nonprofit focused on international democracy. Prior to joining OMRI, she was Chief of Staff for the Secular Coalition for America in Washington, D.C. When not working, she enjoys helping backstage in community theaters.
Review Program Technical Manager
Andria Schulze (phone extension: 112) holds a B.S. in Geology from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute where she researched the accumulation of PCBs in the Hudson River and worked in the high-pressure/high-temperature geochemistry lab. She has professional experience in many areas including: quality assurance in the food industry, laboratory analysis, and geotechnical assessment. She has been at OMRI since 2009 and successfully completed the Crops IOIA Inspector Course in 2010.
Review Program Administrative Manager
Cameron Ference (phone extension: 127) holds a B.S. in Biology from the University of New Mexico where he worked in a neuroimaging research group investigating the genetic underpinnings and cortical basis of mental illness (schizophrenia). Cameron also spent two summers studying fire ecology around Los Alamos County following the 2001 Cerro Grande fire. Prior to joining OMRI, Cameron managed the Quality Assurance department for an organic food processor.
Amber Lippert (phone extension: 116) holds a B.S. in Agriculture from Oregon State University and credit towards a Masters of Agriculture Education. As a student, Amber worked in the OSU horticulture department assisting with breeding, seed saving and field trials of open pollinated broccoli and other field crops. Her professional experience includes seven years of work on organic and transitional farms in Oregon and Washington, including coordinating successful transition to organic certification. She has also worked and studied on farms in Latin America and Hawaii. Amber continues to grow vegetables and raise laying hens on her family farm.
Tina Jensen Augustine holds an M.S. in soil science from the University of Washington where her thesis focused on the effects of nitrogen-fixing trees on soil quality and erosion control in small scale, mountainous agriculture. Her experience includes a 3-month internship for an agriculture/nutrition non-profit in Central America and 5 months of work trade on two different organic farms. In November 2006 Tina attended an IOIA basic farm training in Costa Rica, which provided training on understanding and applying the NOP Rule and included a mock inspection of an organic farm.
Sara Nienaber (phone extension: 105) holds a B.A. in Zoology from Ohio Wesleyan University, and an M.S. in Environmental Studies from the University of Oregon, with concentrations in Environmental Health and Public Policy. As an undergraduate student, Sara completed several independent research projects on the potential physiological effects of common pesticides. As a graduate student, she taught a self-designed, interdisciplinary course on Pollution and Health. Sara is passionate about environmental health and social justice, and she currently serves as a board member for the Northwest Center for Alternatives to Pesticides.
Senior Product Review Coordinator
Doug Currier (phone extension: 113) holds a B.A. in Geography from the University of South Florida and an M.Sc. in Organic Farming from the Scottish Agricultural College where his dissertation focused on public sector procurement and the organic sector, specifically identifying and overcoming barriers to the procurement and supply of organic produce in schools in the English County of Cornwall. Prior to joining OMRI, Doug worked on a small organic holding in East Lothian, Scotland as an assistant grower and bookkeeper and also as a shop assistant at a certified organic whole foods retailer.
Product Review Coordinators
Ana Negrete (phone extension: 124) holds a B.S. in Agribusiness Management from Universidad San Francisco de Quito in Ecuador and an M.S. in Agronomy from University of Puerto Rico where she studied the effect of cover crops on organic sweet pepper yield and soil microbial communities. Ana completed her IOIA farm inspector training in 2010, and her professional experience includes working as an inspector and reviewer for Quality Certification Services (QCS), and internships at organic farms in Ecuador and the U.S.
Tara Sistrunk (phone extension 105) holds a B.S. in Agriculture and Food Systems, majoring in Organic Agriculture Systems, and a B.S. in Soil Science from Washington State University. She has completed courses and internships on certified organic farms and managed a transitional market garden in Spokane, WA. Since 2005 she has been helping others plan and implement urban organic gardens in and around her community.
Daniel Nguyen (phone extension: 114) holds a B.S. in Biology from the University of Oregon. As a student, he assisted the testing of experimental nanotechnology for use in soil and water remediation at UC Santa Barbara. At the University of Oregon, he worked in an ecology lab where he assisted research into Costa Rican orchids.
Peter Bungum (extension 130) earned his B.S. and M.S. in Biology from the University of Oregon. He has worked as a college instructor for three different community colleges in the Willamette Valley, as a Biological Technician for the U.S. Forest Service (working with fungal pathogens), and at Oregon State University as a Research Assistant in the Botany and Plant Pathology department. Peter has also owned a metal fabrication business since 2007.
Joann Ernst (phone extension 107) received a B.A. in Chemistry from California State University. As a student she studied medicinal properties in herbs. Most of her career work has been in regulatory doing oversight to make sure companies are in compliance with discharge permits. Throughout her personal life she has worked with many nonprofits to promote organic foods and products.
Morgan Higham (phone extension 109) holds a B.S. in Animal Science and an M.Ag. in Animal Science and Agricultural Education, both from Oregon State University (OSU). Morgan studied the effects of alpaca presence on grass seedling establishment and particular weeds in a pasture setting, and she also developed a teaching tool to support effective agricultural education. As a student, she worked as a germination technician in the OSU seed laboratory, and she participated in the Willing Workers on Organic Farms (WWOOF) program throughout New Zealand. Morgan also owns and operates her own animal and farm care business.
Senior Review Program Specialists
Tony Selvey (phone extension 120) received a B.S. in Sociology with a minor in Economics. He has worked and interned in several capacities in the nonprofit sector, including administrative support, fundraising, and community organization. He is also a writer and an avid book collector.
Jessica Southwick (phone extension: 118) graduated from Central Washington University with a B.S in Primate Behavior and a B.S. in Biology. She originally comes from Stillwater, Oklahoma. Jessica has worked on organic farms in New Zealand and Central Washington, and her interests include ecology and wildlife conservation.
Review Program Specialists
Claudia Ortiz (phone extension: 131) graduated from Brigham Young University with a B.S. in Food Science. As a student, she studied microbiology, testing, food safety and quality assurance programs, laboratory analysis, and sensory evaluation of food products. She also participated in a micro study for a food manufacturer in time temperature management and bacteria growth prevention in food processing and handling. After graduation she worked with an organic food processor in the Quality Assurance department, and later moved on to manage the organic and Kosher programs.
Alyssa Martinez (phone extension: 111) graduated from the University of Oregon with a B.A. in Psychology. She has a strong interest in the process of producing food and specifically the differences in organic certification and processing in the United States as compared to other countries. Before coming to OMRI, Alyssa worked with the Department of Parking and Transportation at the University of Oregon and interned at a non-profit organization that examines the conditions surrounding incarceration.
Cindy Coachman (phone extension: 101) has completed 2 years of college and has had specialized on-the-job training in customer service, business procedures, money handling, security procedures, credit approvals, document management, and processing of many types of transactions. Cindy has over 20 years experience in business offices and 13 years experience as a small business owner.
Information Technology Manager
Mel Bartels (phone extension: 129) has worked as a software manager, architect and lead developer, specializing in leading software teams and creating production optimization applications. He also developed an open sourced telescope control system that became popular worldwide. A speaker at astronomical conferences, his telescope walkabouts are a highlight at the Oregon Star Party. The International Astronomical Union named asteroid 17823 Bartels in recognition for his contributions to amateur astronomy. Mel enjoys helping with his wife’s treatment-free beekeeping. Previously he played trumpet professionally with the symphony and jazz bands and holds a pilot’s license.
Information Technology Advisor
Brian Basor (phone extension: 108) holds a B.S. from Humboldt State University. He began working in the field of information technology in 1996, including server programming, GIS modeling, website design, and database programming. He helped bring internet and telephone services to the Hurricane Katrina disaster zone using radio transmission. Brian also has experience and education in plant ecology, botany, environmental biology, and organic agriculture.
Todd Ziglinski (phone extension: 115) received a B.S. from the University of Oregon in Journalism/Telecommunications. He has been in the information technology field since 1990 with a focus on infrastructure, networking, telecom, OS support, and help desk. He previously worked for organizations that focus on IT research as well as education.
Senior Software Programmer
Tim Sawyer (phone extension: 128) received a B.A. in Mathematics from the University of Oregon. His information services experience includes database and application programming, business and systems analysis, and user support. Tim worked in environmental science, specifically air quality, for nearly 15 years and has experience ranging from building pollution monitoring devices to performing air dispersion modeling.
Stephen Manchester (phone extension 128) has been programming for over 20 years. Previous projects include hardware device drivers, multimedia based training, and massively multi-player online games. He is passionate about software architecture, electronics, and just about anything outdoors and loves living in Eugene, Oregon.
Corydon S. Cailteux (phone extension: 132) has worked in IT and Graphic Design for the last ten years. Originally from St. Louis, MO, he now lives and works in Eugene. He has a passion for graphical user interfaces and developing rich graphical environments. He has previously worked for a number of companies in marketing, design and technology capacities.
Nancy Henderson (phone extension: 122) graduated from Oregon State University in Corvallis, OR with a B.S. degree in Speech Communications. Her career in marketing has taken her from Seattle to San Francisco and back to Eugene where she grew up. Nancy is experienced in the design and layout of marketing and sales materials, events coordination, and administrative assistant duties. One of her favorite volunteering experiences was delivering meals to the elderly for the American Red Cross “Meals-on-Wheels” program.
Melody Carr (phone extension: 103) holds an M.A. and a B.A. in the Humanities from Western Oregon University and performed work toward a Ph.D in English at the University of Oregon. She has also completed accounting and computer programming classes at Lane Community College. Melody was the bookkeeper for Surata Soyfoods Cooperative from 1989-1995 where she programmed their manual accounting system onto a computer system using dBASE and Lotus 123. She worked as an independent bookkeeper and copy editor for several years for various publishers and for Peralandra Bookstore. She began work as OMRI's bookkeeper in 1998.
Human Resources Manager
Blyss Hansen (phone extension: 121) holds a B.A. in Communications from the University of Wyoming with emphasis on human and multi-media communications. Prior to joining OMRI, she served as the Director of Operations and Development for a science museum in Wyoming. She has over ten years experience in the nonprofit sector and has been with OMRI since 2009.
Ginger Morton (phone extension: 119) attended Rogue Community College where she earned an AA in Accounting. She later attended the University of Alaska Southeast, focusing on law and computer science. She has over 20 years of office experience, much of which involved public interaction, and one year of experience working with nonprofit agencies. Ginger retired from the State of Alaska in 2009 after serving ten years as the Executive Director of a state regulated professional licensing board.
Josna Lauryan Lewis (phone extension: 100) has over 20 years of experience in administrative support and also as a small business owner. She volunteers at 90by30, whose goal is to reduce child abuse and neglect in Lane County, Oregon, 90% by the year 2030. In her free time, she enjoys hiking, organic gardening, trying out new food recipes, reading, music, and being with family and friends.