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OREP Staff & Board

Staff Biographies

Ray Neff
Ray NeffResearch Director & Communications Coordinator

Ray earned a BS in Planning, Public Policy and Management and an MCRP in Community and Regional Planning from the University of Oregon. A sustainable community development study abroad program in Kefalonia, Greece introduced him to renewable energy feed-in tariff policy. His research includes estimating solar PV capacity on large commercial and public buildings in Eugene, and a comparison of the potential impacts and benefits of two feed-in tariff bills in the 2009 Oregon Legislature with a business-as-usual approach to climate change.

In his current work with OREP he produces digital communications, writes media responses on renewable energy issues, conducts research, and helps develop policy positions. Ray provides a bridge between OREP, academia, policy makers, and local energy interests in the South Willamette Valley, building community and utility industry support for advanced renewable energy policy.

Kathleen NewmanKathleen Newman
Senior Policy Analyst

Kathleen's concerns about global climate change and ocean acidification drive her efforts to help Oregon transition rapidly and effectively from fossil fuel to renewable power sources. Her background in environmental science, education, and sustainable architecture inform her work in renewable energy education and policy. Kathleen is passionate about the power of community-owned solar to foster education, engagement, and empowerment for change. Kathleen intervenes on behalf of OREP in Oregon Public Utility Commission dockets and has been active in developing and driving policy concepts for the organization. Kathleen received her B.S. from Cornell University and Ph.D. in Environmental Science from MIT

Mark PengillyMark Pengilly
A trip to Germany in 2006 inspired Mark with the power of advanced renewable energy policy and its potential benefits for Oregon.  Mark worked to pass Oregon’s Feed-in Tariff legislation, helped craft Oregon’s Solar Specialty Code and authored HB 3516, which made solar PV an outright permitted use on Oregon rooftops.  He led the successful effort to expand Oregon’s Solar Pilot Program in 2013 and in 2014, in concert with Kathleen Newman, worked to pass SB 1520, which removed a significant barrier to the formation of community renewable energy cooperatives in Oregon.  Mark represents OREP in Public Utility Commission dockets, collaborates on energy policy with other advocates and frequently gives presentations on renewable energy topics.

Mark received his A.B. with distinction from Stanford University and his J.D. from Indiana University School of Law.

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Board Members 

Catherine Gorrell
Catherine’s concern about environmental issues now propels her to act specifically on the importance and responsibility of promoting renewable energy. OREP is a strategic force for that end.

Her business career has been focused on moving organizations toward higher performance. In her years working for corporate, government and nonprofit organizations, Catherine has offered a broad range of skills and expertise resulting in a strategic-based approach to operational and organizational performance. She has leveraged those skills to enable her clients and partners to enhance practices, strategy, and continuous improvement endeavors.

After working a decade for PriceWaterhouse-Cooper, Catherine started FORMAC —a management and consulting firm—and grew it to be 50 employees in 2 states.  Additionally, for 20 years, she has been a contributing editor of the international business magazine, Strategy & Leadership.

Jay HamlinJay Hamlin
After moving to Oregon from Arizona with his wife and daughter in 1990 Jay immediately got involved with his new environment and community. As one of the first members of the then newly formed Tualatin Riverkeepers, Jay quickly joined the Board of Directors and coordinated many of the early Discovery Day events. He has served on the Board of Trustees for the local Unitarian Universalist Community Church of Washington County as President and then Treasurer. A software engineer by trade, now 'mostly retired', Jay has joined the Oregonians for Renewable Energy Progress team to leverage his years of non-profit Board experience, helping this exciting group promote and expand the renewable energy offerings available to all of us.

Teddy Keizer
Teddy is a 7th generation Oregonian who graduated from Brown University in 1994. As a campaign organizer, he developed an environmental platform for Congressman Patrick Kennedy (1994), and has volunteered with school board and ballot initiative campaigns and Presidential campaigns. He is the past Statewide Organizer with Stand for Children campaigns to improve school nutrition policies, mentoring programs, and public parks, and was recognized for outstanding success in enlarging membership and fundraising. From 2005-2009, Teddy was Chief of Staff to Oregon Senator Joanne Verger where he led a successful multiyear effort to reform Oregon’s Bottle Bill, helped pass the Oregon Climate Corps Bill creating statewide Climate Masters programs modeled after Master Recyclers.

When not entrenched in politics, Teddy has toured all 50 states to promote wilderness preservation, speaking and giving interviews; been the subject of an Outdoor Life Network documentary aired on national TV, and has been an active volunteer with OREP since 2008. He lives in SE Portland with his wife, son and daughter, and Truman the Dog.

Dave King
Dave is a retired social worker and joined the OREP Board in February 2014. He got his MSW at UCLA in 1988, after enjoying working for most of his life with his hands and body. He worked as an oilfield roughneck in Wyoming to finance junior college. Among other jobs he was a union carpenter, an installer of solar water heating systems and an organizer for the Amalgamated Transit Union Local 757. He has been a union shop steward and served on a contract negotiating committee. He has served on the Executive Committees of Portland Central America Solidarity Committee, and Portland Jobs with Justice. Currently he is a co-leader of the Climate Jobs Committee of Portland. He is happily married to Laurie and manages three rental houses near his home in the St Johns neighborhood of Portland.

Dan Orzech
An Oregonian from birth, Dan Orzech is a solar developer working with projects around the country. He has been involved with solar since 2009, when he began developing utility-scale solar projects for Community Energy Solar, Inc., including a 6.5 megawatt solar project for the City of Vineland, New Jersey. Dan has consulted for a number of European and U.S. solar panel manufacturers, investment funds and project developers, helping them identify suitable projects, perform due diligence, and identify sources of project financing, and has developed or consulted on a total of more than 10 megawatts of solar projects in New Jersey, New York and Nevada. Prior to the solar industry, Dan worked in green real estate development, in the software industry, and as a journalist and analyst covering the high-tech and clean-tech industries.

Jamie PainterJamie Painter
Jamie Painter was born and raised in the NW and has a deep passion for sustainability and social justice. As a lobbyist and PR professional, Jamie spends her weekdays advocating for sound policy in the Oregon legislature and promoting organizations through strategic communication and storytelling. Jamie has worked with a variety of nonprofits, including Climate Solutions, where she served as Oregon Communications and Outreach Manager. In her spare time, you will likely find her enjoying the great outdoors, where she loves to garden, camp, surf and hike.

Jaimes Valdez


The OREP Board also currently includes volunteer staff members Kathleen Newman and Mark Pengilly

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