President Jessica Sollaccio | Email email@example.com
Originally from Florida, Jessica has found many tropical plants that she is familiar with growing in the PNW! Prior to moving to Warrenton, Jessica lived in Alaska where the growing season was quite short but enjoyed foraging for wild blueberries. After moving in November of last year, she immediately enrolled in the Master Gardener program in an effort to meet other members in the community and learn more about the local flora. She hopes to build raised planters this year with different types of produce and to teach her young son about gardening. She is also interested in learning more about local mushrooms and cultivating medicinals such as lion’s mane and reishi. Environmental stewardship and supporting neighbors facing food insecurity are important to Jessica.
Vice President, Communication and Marketing Tonya Hockett
Before settling into her home in Warrenton last year, Tonya lived with her daughter and husband in their RV at the KOA while searching for a home in the heat of the housing market. Her husband worked on building the Jetty at Fort Stevens, and that is what brought them to our area. Tonya knows a thing or two about living in small spaces, she lived on a sailboat for 4 years! Tonya is your newest VP of Marketing and Communication and brings a wealth of knowledge from her experiences as a small business owner. When her daughter started to become curious about nature and plants, Tonya decided to strengthen her knowledge by becoming a Master Gardener. When she’s not working on Master Gardener projects, Tonya is a 4-H leader and very involved in the local 4H with her daughter. Outside of community service, you can find Tonya planting a native garden, orchard, and creating a closed loop system in her greenhouse.
OMGA Representative Elizabeth Schimpf
Elizabeth is our veteran on the board, she has been a Master Gardener since 2018 and supported Seed to Supper for 2 years. She has been in Astoria for 11 years but has always lived on the coast and enjoyed the water. When she was younger, she enjoyed foraging and used to dry rosehips. Her current passion lies in growing medicinal herbs such as comfrey and lemon verbena. During her time as a Master Gardener, she has enjoyed learning how to grow dahlias. You might not know that similar to medicinal herbs, dahlias are edible - Aztecs ate them as tubers! Elizabeth has not tried to eat her dahlias…yet! She is our newest OMGA State Representative!
Treasurer Deborah Howe
Deborah is from the class of 2022 and will be serving as Treasurer. Last year, following a career as an urban planning professor, she moved to Astoria after restoring a Victorian house that she has owned for over thirty years. She has a passion for edible landscapes and taught a popular course on Sustainable Food Systems Planning at Temple University. She has a particular interest in raising lotus plants but has discovered that they are a challenge to grow on her property due to low temperatures and too much shade. But she will try again next year. One interesting tidbit about Deborah–years ago she built a tiny, passive solar house 90 miles north of New York City for $3,500. She lived there for 5 years despite the home having no electricity or running water!
Historian Ann Nilsson
Ann arrived in Astoria in 2017 after spending the majority of her life in the midwest. She is from southern Illinois originally where she and her husband had a large farm with 200 acres. They fell in love with the beauty of the Pacific Northwest while visiting and decided to make the move out west. Ann loves the abundant lavender that grows in the area but her favorite things to grow are herbs and dahlias. She bought her home from a Master Gardener who had enlisted Clatsop Community College students to plant the original garden that still contains two apple and two plum trees! She enjoys experimenting with growing methods for different plants. She is your new Historian and will be leading the efforts to document Master Gardener events and memorabilia through the year!
OMGA Alternative Representative Nancy Leonard
Secretary Liz Bigda
2023 Class Representative Cassidy Turner