2019-2020 Cohort


Brian Charlton:

Mr. Charlton received his BS degree in Crop and Soil Science from Oregon State University (OSU) and his MS degree in Agronomy from Iowa State University. He has research and Extension responsibilities for potato production systems in Oregon with primary emphasis in the Klamath Basin. Mr. Charlton has worked in the area of potato variety development and cultural management the past 22 years. He is also responsible for seed maintenance and distribution of Tri-state (OSU, WSU, U of Idaho, and USDA/ARS) potato selections to University and Industry cooperators throughout the Pacific Northwest and nationally sponsored trials. Mr. Charlton was awarded the position of Klamath Basin Potato Faculty Scholar in 2014. He is currently the Interim Director of the Agricultural Experiment Station side of the Klamath Basin Research and Extension Center located in southern Oregon.


Frank Chaplen

Frank Chaplen received a B.S. in Chemical Engineering from Oregon State University in 1989 and a Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 1996. He has been teaching and research faculty at Oregon State University since 1996 in the Department of Biological & Ecological Engineering, the College of Agricultural Sciences, where he is currently an Associate Professor. His teaching activities focus on delivering courses in the Ecological Engineering and Food Science & Technology B.S. Programs. He also served as Ecological Engineering Program Head Advisor, Ecological Engineering Program Accreditation Coordinator, and Chair of the Department Undergraduate Program Committee for several years during program initiation and start-up. He has been Chair of the College of Engineering Curriculum Committee since 2016 and has served twice on the faculty senate’s Curriculum Council. He is currently a member of the faculty senate’s Budget and Finance Committee. His research activities focus on developing mathematical models for elucidating soil microbial nitrification and denitrification processes in soil and waste-water treatment systems. Previous work focused on developing integrative models of biofuels-producing organisms, including biomass for lipids and biological hydrogen production. His group in general develops integrative models of the combined soil microbe, liquid and soil microcosm system both to aid in data analysis and to provide predictive insights into ongoing process driving N uptake and plant growth. He is a member of and active in the American Chemical Society and the American Institute of Chemical Engineers.


Rich Collins

Rich Collins is a Writer and Content Marketing Strategist for WorkSpace: Professional and Continuing Education at Oregon State University. Rich produces written content for websites, fliers, emails, brochures and more. He also provides technical support for website, design expertise for marketing documents and works as part of a team to help plan programs. In addition to written content, Rich is also interested in photography, videography, and print and digital design. He is excited to reach students with new and innovative educational opportunities. Rich holds an MA in English Literature from Oregon State University and a BA in English with minors in German, Creative Writing, and Film Studies from the University of West Georgia. Rich has worked in a variety of areas in his professional career, beginning as a bag boy and then shift manager at the Piggly Wiggly, volunteering for a year in the nonprofit sector as a Montana Campus Compact AmeriCorps VISTA, and even working in the health insurance industry for a short time. Most recently, Rich has been working in higher education. He started as a writing instructor teaching technical writing, business writing, and freshman composition. Now he provides marketing support for non-credit education and emerging initiatives at Oregon State University.


Ann Colonna

Ann Colonna received her B.S. degree in Biochemistry in 1997 from the University of Arizona and followed that with a culinary degree from the Culinary School of the Rockies in Boulder, Colorado and Provence, France. She continued her education at the University of California, Davis where she earned an M.S. degree in Sensory Food Science in 2001 focusing on methods to mask the carry-over effects in the mouth from the astringency in wine. Ann is currently in her 18th year at the Food Innovation Center in Portland, Oregon, an off campus Oregon State University Experiment Station, where she serves at the Sensory Program Director. She assists industry clients with sensory and consumer testing and collaborates in mission oriented research designed to advance Northwest agriculture and food products. Recent work includes: factors affecting consumers’ preferences for and purchasing decisions regarding pasteurized vs raw milk and grassfed specialty cheeses, evaluating consumer acceptability of new Northwest strawberry varietals, consumer detection and acceptability of reduced-sodium bread, gauging the sensory impacts of steam treatment to combat Salmonella on in-shell hazelnuts, understanding consumer preference for grass-fed beef, analyzing marketing messages and consumer acceptance of Oregon Pinot Noir wine, perceptions of fresh vs. frozen Black cod, Coho salmon and Albacore tuna, and exploring the acceptability of dulse seaweed among others.


Pankaj Jaiswal:

Dr. Pankaj Jaiswal is a Professor in the Department of Botany and Plant Pathology at Oregon State University (OSU) and Co-founder and owner of Sensiplicity LLC. He is a co-founder and lead investigator of an international project on Plant Ontology (www.planteome.org) that provides data standards and ontologies for integration in plant biology research. He co-leads the development of one of the world’s largest international collaborative the Gramene knowledgebase for comparative plant genomics with his principal responsibility of developing a Plant Gene and Pathway Network called Plant Reactome (http://plantreactome.gramene.org). His research involves studying systems biology and plant gene networks associated with drought and salinity abiotic stress responses in agricultural and biofuel feedstock plants. He received about $10M in extramural awards from the National Science Foundation, the Department of Energy and the USDA. His research program on plant stress biology, genome annotation, comparative genomics, computational biology, and bioinformatics is interdisciplinary and relies heavily on training graduate and undergraduate students, research associates, and software developers. He is also a recognized graduate faculty advisor for the graduate programs of the Molecular and Cell Biology, School of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science and the Department of Statistics. Prof. Jaiswal received his BS (1990), MS (1992), and Ph.D. (1998) from Lucknow University in India and was a Postdoctoral Associate at the University of Vienna, Austria, and Cornell University, NY. In 2013 he was recognized as an Emerging Scholar Faculty by the Oregon State University chapter of the Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi and later was the President of the Chapter from 2016-2019. He initiated and coordinated the STEM summer camps on genomics and bioinformatics for K-12 students at Oregon State University. He was the Chair of the International Conference on Biological Ontology in 2016 and 2018 held at Oregon State University. 


Jason Jones:

Jason Jones is a Multimedia Project Manager at Oregon State University. He specializes in managing creatives who work in the fields of video and animation. Before project management, Jason worked in sports media, film and television, where he co-produced and co-edited the award winning documentary Accidental Courtesy, about race relations in the US. He has also worked on documentary projects for Google and CBS Television, as well as for local and statewide non-profits promoting disability access, storytelling on film for homeless youth, and uplifting refugee voices and stories.


Zach Kronser

Zach Elliott Kronser lives in Independence, Oregon and has more than 15 years experience working both in the nonprofit industry and in higher education in Oregon, with experience in nonprofit operations and in organizational development. He is a graduate of the University of Portland’s MBA in Nonprofit Management program and currently works at Oregon State University Ecampus in Corvallis. He currently serves as vice chair on the board of the Center for Nonprofit Stewardship.


Andrea Leao:

I am a 4-H member alumni from Klamath County that decided to study Agricultural Education at Linn Benton Community College and OSU. After completing two years at LBCC, where I was a member of the nationally competitive Livestock Judging Team, I transferred to OSU. There I completed my Bachelors of Science in Agriculture and my Masters in Agricultural Education. I was a substitute and part-time teacher in the Willamette Valley for the next eight years. Prior to getting hired for the OSU Extension Linn County 4-H Program Coordinator position, I worked full time for Clackamas County Fair and Event Center. My husband, of almost 20 years, and I live on 15 acres in the Silverton area. We have four girls that range from 8 to 16 years in age. Our girls are very involved in Marion County 4-H with various livestock projects. One of my special interests is working with youth with special needs, which stems from the fact that our 14 year old daughter is autistic and I have seen how much the 4-H program has helped her. Because of this experience with her, I created a special needs program for Waverly and Lafayette Elementary schools in Albany. This program allowed me to work in a special needs classroom and give those children an opportunity to experience 4-H. Last year this program expanded to the entire Lafayette school where we spent one day a week with the students teaching them about natural resources, nutrition, design build, and teambuilding. The year culminated with a school wide agriculture field day that consisted of 14 hands-on stations for all of the students to experience. 4-H volunteers and members were actively involved by providing animals, tractors, activities, and knowledge sharing with the kids. This was such a fun and rewarding experience, offering this Title 1 School exposure to agriculture and 4-H.


Paula Matano

Paula Matano is a program manager with Professional & Continuing Education at Oregon State University. Paula specializes in the development of non-credit programs through innovative design principles and creative problem solving. Prior to her work here, she has held roles in various state agencies across Oregon, including the Judicial Department where she led one of the largest technology implementations in the courts history. She is passionate about the evolving world of non-credit education and its ability to impact lives and shape communities. Paula received her undergraduate degrees from University of Oregon, and her Master of Arts from the University of Washington, and also holds professional certifications in project management and business analysis.. In her free time Paula enjoys spending time with her family, mountain biking, and consuming entirely too much true crime.


Becky Munn:

I currently work as the OSU Open Campus Coordinator for Crook County in Central Oregon. I have had the privilege of working for Open Campus for five years. My background is in education so connecting my community to valuable educational opportunities and taking away barriers to education is a passion of mine. One of my favorite Open Campus experiences is helping bring the Juntos program to Crook County and continuing to work to support that program. I live in Prineville and am married with two grown children and enjoy spending time with my family and traveling in my free time.


Kathleen O Malley

Dr. Kathleen O’Malley is a Professor in the Department of Fisheries and Wildlife and the Coastal Oregon Marine Experiment Station at Oregon State University.  As the State Fisheries Geneticist, O’Malley conducts fisheries genetics research that addresses the science and management needs of the Coastal Oregon Marine Experiment Station and the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife.  She provides leadership in the production of genetic data, the development of science-based tools and information from those data, and the formulation of science-based recommendations based on the genetic information.  O’Malley’s research spans both the freshwater and marine environments focusing on species of ecological, evolutionary, or economic importance.  O’Malley received her B.S. (1999) from Florida State University, M.S. (2001) from the University of Guelph, Ontario, Canada, and Ph.D. (2007) from Oregon State University.  O’Malley was a National Research Council Postdoctoral Research Associate at NOAA’s Northwest Fisheries Science Center in Seattle, Washington.


Kym Pokorny

I was born and raised in Roseville, Calif., on my family’s plant nursery and farm. I was an early 4-H member, starting in sewing and cooking and then moving on to show my horse at county and state fairs. I received my bachelor’s degree in journalism with a minor in environmental sciences from California State University, Humboldt. I went on to be an award-winning journalist for The Oregonian newspaper for 26 years, writing about horticulture and the nursery industry for many of them. Four years ago, I joined Oregon State University Extension Service as a communications specialist. I still write about horticulture, but also lead faculty trainings on impact statements and media relations, coordinate the Ask an Expert program and administer social media. In my spare time, I garden, read, travel, cook, listen to music and play with my cat and dog.


Eddie Rodriguez

As a first-generation Mexican American, I have grown up in two worlds. Each with its own set of challenges and complexities that at times have made it difficult to define my identity. However, as I have continued to grow through various life experiences I have learned that my dual identity has afforded the opportunity to learn beyond the traditional learner. In other words, given my diverse upbringing I am able to contribute a unique lens when developing solutions or approaching challenges. I was born in Coos Bay, Oregon a small blue-collar community on the south coast of the state. My parents emigrated from Mexico at the age of 15 and became parents at the young age of 20. Society might argue that this family would be destined to a life of hardship. However, my parents grew up sooner than most and had the mindset of achieving success. They sacrificed their youth, their way of life, and left their native country in search of a better future. Their sacrifice and journey to the US was and is a constant reminder of the person I am today. The work ethic they demonstrated to obtain their goals opened my mind to the dreams I could accomplish. As such, I became the first member in my family to earn a college degree, and now I am months away from obtaining my master’s degree. Although my journey has not been easy, it is nothing compared to what my family endured to be where they are today. Therefore, with their experiences always in mind I have been able to persevere in my professional journey and have established myself as a hard-working individual who is willing to support each team member in order to see everyone succeed. I will continue to learn and absorb from those around me and hope to continue pressing forward toward a better future for my community.


Nicole Sanchez:

Born and raised in Virginia, Nicole has been a gardener since childhood, when she followed her grandfather around the garden pestering him with horticultural questions. She began her horticulture career in the retail florist and garden center arena, then went on to study horticulture and entomology at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville (bachelor’s 2000, master’s 2002). After college she worked for 10 years in botanical gardens, first at the large and established Callaway Gardens (Pine Mountain, GA) where she served in several capacities including interim director of 100 employees and a $10 million budget, then as the keystone employee of the Columbus (GA) Botanical Garden, a then- new garden with no employees and almost no budget. She has been a freelance landscape designer and an adjunct community college horticulture professor. At North Carolina State University she served as a crop consultant for fruit and vegetable growers in eastern NC for five years. She’s been at Oregon State University’s Klamath Basin Research & Extension Center since July 2016 as a professor of practice, working with both commercial and home horticulture programs as well as a variety of insect- related projects. Outside work, Nicole’s interests include quilting, reading, writing poetry, and exploring nature. Nicole has entered many quilts in competitions, and both published and performed her poetry, some of which includes significant horticultural content. She raises chickens and dairy goats with her son, 13, and daughter, 10.


Joyce Senior:

Joyce Senior Angulo was born and raised in Costa Rica, Central America. She received both a Bachelor’s degree in Human Nutrition in 2009 and a Licentiate degree in Human Nutrition in 2010 from the University of Costa Rica. She earned a PhD in Food Technology from Clemson University in December 17, 2015. She has worked as a Nutrition Education Program Coordinator at Oregon State University, from March 2016 – present year. Joyce Senior Angulo was invited in 2013 to attend the Annual Meeting of International Society of Behavior Nutrition and Physical Activity in Belgium and in 2014, attended the National Conference for the Society for Advancement of Chicanos/Hispanics and Native Americans in Science, where she presented her research findings on creating a web-based and culturally tailored nutrition education intervention program for young African American women. She is an active member of the Society for Nutrition Education and Behavior (SNEB). SNEB is an international community of educators worldwide with its main mission to promote, support, and advocate for effective nutrition education and healthy lifestyle behaviors. Every year, she serves as a reviewer of research article abstracts submitted to be presented at the SNEB conference. She is also a member of the National Extension Association of Family and Consumer Sciences (NEAFCS). The NEAFCS is a professional organization made up of educators who are devoted to creating positive change and improvements to the quality of life for individuals, families, and communities. At OSU, she is the SNAP-Ed Coordinator for Clatsop County. The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Education (SNAP-Ed) is a federally funded program operating under the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), and it is an evidence-based program that teaches participants about good nutrition and budgeting so participants can learn to create a good diet for themselves based on their own financial situation. In 2017 she became the EFNEP coordinator for the state of Oregon. The Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program (EFNEP) is also a federally funded program operating under the USDA. The program serves limited resource families with young children by providing holistic nutrition education. In 2018 she submitted a team application for the NEAFCS Mary W. Wells Memorial Diversity Award for their My Hair My Health PDX! (MHMH PDX!) project, which won the 1st place state award, 1st place on the Western Region, and 2nd place nationally. Joyce Senior Angulo was a concurrent session presenter on My Hair My Health PDX! at the 2018 NEAFCS Annual Conference in San Antonio, TX. The aim of MHMH PDX! is for local organizations to work collectively and use hair health and practices as the platform to increase physical activity and fruit and vegetable consumption among black women. Joyce Senior Angulo received the Newer Faculty Award at the 2018 OSU Extension Annual Conference and in 2019 collaborated in the publication of an OSU nutrition education article in a peer-reviewed journal. Joyce Senior Angulo has proved herself to be a key contributor at OSU in the area of culturally-tailored nutrition education.


Victor Villegas

Victor Villegas, Technology & Media Support Coordinator, Oregon State University Extension Passionate about public outreach and engagement, technologist at heart who loves helping people learn how to use technology to improve their work and better their lives. I have a knack for explaining technology in simple, easy to understand terms, without the usual geek speak and techno-babel. I act as a bridge between techies and end users. Fully bi-lingual and bicultural, fluent in English and Spanish. Also have some limited French knowledge. I especially enjoy exploring the intersect between the Arts, Science and Technology. My interdisciplinary experience, interests and skills have led to a bit of "fame" through my alter-ego, DroneSinger – The "Weird Al" of drones, world's #1 composer of parody songs about drones. I create these "drone songs" to bring attention to drone issues and culture, while promoting safe and responsible flying. I leverage this fame to provide STEM / STEAM drone education for K-12 students (especially under-represented youth), educators, community groups and the public at large. I am also an advocate for drone safety and using drones for good. Professional and collaborative connections include: OSU College of Agricultural Sciences, OSU Research Office, OSU College of Engineering, OSU College of Education, OSU College of Liberal Arts, USDA/NIFA, Oregon Department of Education, Oregon Department of Aviation, Intel, FLIR and many more. Interests include: creativity, technology, innovation, art, story telling, collaboration, life-long learning, experiential education, aeronautics, music, leadership, social media, marketing, media production, drones, and puppetry/ventriloquism...preferably all at the same time.