Reed Davaz McGowan, Executive Director
Reed Davaz McGowan grew up in Eugene and first fell in love with reading at the Eugene Public Library, She has since built over 20 years of expertise as a nonprofit leader. As an executive director of organizations in San Francisco and Philadelphia, she has focused on increasing access to and funding for innovative arts and educational programming for underserved and often marginalized youth and communities. Reed received her Master of Arts in Arts Management from the University of Oregon in 2007, earning the Walton Research Scholarship for her research on youth leadership development in the arts. In 2002, she received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Spanish from the University of Oregon. She is also multimedia designer and public transportation enthusiast.
Madison Wilson, Administrative Coordinator
Madison Wilson is an Oregon native with a passion for reading, writing, and communications. Her love for books and libraries began with a trip to the Eugene Public Library’s downtown branch as a young child, where she was taken by the grand rotunda and wealth of information freely available to the community. That love for books and information only grew through her education at the University of Oregon where she graduated from the School of Journalism with an emphasis in public relations. Before working for the Foundation, Madison worked as a communications specialist for the Oregon Department of Transportation and Lane County Health and Human Services. Madison also enjoys taking photographs and hanging out with her two cats.
Board of Directors 2019-2020
We are very grateful to these community leaders for their willingness to share their time and talent as we work to support excellence at the Eugene Public Library. Thank you!
Ellen Todras – President
Ellen Todras has written educational materials for students and teachers in social studies and language arts for more than 30 years. Her young-adult book Angelina Grimké: Voice of Abolition was published in 1999. Ellen received her B.A. from Goucher College and her M.Ed. from Central Washington University. She has served on a number of boards and is a member of the Fortnightly Club of Eugene. She and her husband live in South Eugene.
Jane Olbekson – Vice President
Jane Olbekson has been licensed as a financial advisor since 2000, working independently since 2007 when she moved from Coos Bay to Eugene. Prior to obtaining her license as a financial advisor, she spent several years working as a certified childbirth instructor, and as a program manager for the state Department of Human Services. She has a long history of community involvement serving on boards and volunteering for groups and causes she supports. Currently, she is a Master Recycler, a member of the Eugene Downtown Lions Club, and the local chapter of NAACP. Jane strongly believes libraries and parks are critical elements of healthy communities, open to everyone for life-enhancing experiences.
Julie Whitmore – Past President
Julie has served as board chair for the Eugene Education Fund, the Eugene, Springfield Youth Symphony, and Fortnightly Club. She has co-chaired two local option levies for school funding, and been an active volunteer for the Nature Conservancy, the Oregon Community Foundation and as a yoga teacher at the Juvenile Justice Center. She enjoys writing fiction, traveling, playing music, gardening, hiking and skiing.
Marta Powers – Treasurer
Marta Powers is a CPA and partner with Powers Howard Quimby LLP, a local accounting firm. Marta received her Masters in Accounting from the University of Oregon and assists non-profits, businesses and individuals with Tax planning and filings. Marta also serves on the board of the Eugene Estate Planning Council.
Renée Buchanan is an active member of the Eugene community. An avid long distance runner, she loves the many paved and unpaved trails the area offers. An independent consultant, she helps a range of organizations understand their impact, and helps nonprofit organizations improve their administrative functions. In addition, she teaches at the University of Oregon in the Public Policy, Planning and Management program. Renée received a master’s degree in Public Administration from the University of Utah.
Lisa Rubenstein Calevi
Lisa Rubenstein Calevi is the Institutional Relations Manager for Global Education Oregon (GEO), part of the University of Oregon Office of International Affairs. She received her B.A. from the University of Michigan, an M.A. from the Syracuse University Florence Fellowship Program in Italy, and completed doctoral coursework in art history at the UO. For 14 years, Lisa lived in central and northern Italy — first as a graduate student, and later as an instructor and program coordinator for several U.S. study abroad programs based in Italy. She returned to her hometown of Eugene, Oregon, passionate about the transformative power of study abroad at all stages of life. In addition to her work for GEO, Lisa enjoys cooking the traditional cuisines of the Mediterranean, reading, and spending time with her husband and two children.
Kathryn Weit is recently retired from an almost 30 year career as a disability policy analyst, lobbyist, and executive director of a federally funded state disability council. Prior to the birth of her son, who experiences disability, she was a high school reading specialist in inner city schools in Boston, Arlington, Virginia, and finally at Jefferson High School in Portland. Reading and helping youth discover a love for reading is a passion. Before returning to graduate school for her M.Ed at Boston University, Kathryn worked for the Milwaukee Public Library driving a small bookmobile around Latino neighborhoods, putting on puppet shows, providing functional literacy support and library service outreach. She currently serves on the boards of two local nonprofits, Full Access Brokerage and Ritz Arts.
Sarah Coates is a Eugene native and long-time library aficionado. She holds a B.A. in psychology with a minor in English from Portland State University and currently attends the University of Oregon School of Law. She has previously done volunteer work with the Eugene Public Library and Start Making A Reader Today. In her free time Sarah enjoys spending time with her dog Mango, and searching for the best slushy in Eugene.
Michael Dunne is the communications manager for Columbia Bank. In this role, he is responsible for public and media relations nationally and in the local markets of Seattle, Portland and Eugene. Prior to joining the bank, Dunne was public relations director and spokesperson for national telecommunications companies’ CenturyLink and Cox Communications. Dunne also served as media relations manager for The MWW Group, a full-service public relations agency in Seattle. Dunne is actively involved in the community, serving as a board member for the Eugene Education Foundation, as well as the Board secretary and marketing lead for the KLCC Public Radio Foundation. He’s been recognized as a Distinguished Citizen from the University of Arizona School of Social and Behavioral Sciences, and graduated from the Leadership Eugene/Springfield Program offered by the Eugene/Springfield Chamber of Commerce.
Michael attended the University of California, Davis, where he received his B.A. in Political Science.
Allison Howard is a CPA and partner with Powers Howard Quimby LLP and specializes in individual, business and nonprofit tax. Growing up in the Eugene area, and then attending the University of Oregon, has given her a desire to support her local community. In her free time Allison and her family enjoy exploring, learning, concerts at the Cuthbert, and supporting local breweries. She is also an avid reader who knows first hand how important the library is and how reading can change lives. Allison’s daughter, Sabine, was one of the first to sign up for Imagination Library. You may also recognize them in promotional material as they were asked to share how important reading is to them.
Hans moved to Eugene in 2000 to go to University of Oregon and graduated with a degree in Political Science and a Business minor. After graduation he started working for Summit Bank, where he has worked since 2005, working his way from teller to Treasury Management Officer. When he is not at work he volunteers with Habitat for Humanity, working directly with the partner families and their finances, and can be found every October pressing cider for the Mt. Pisgah Mushroom Festival. He also loves going camping with his wife and two dogs while exploring Oregon, or going for a bike ride around town. When not outside he is inside playing board games or looking for the next good book to add to the shelf.
Matt Keating is a rescue dog’s best friend, proud uncle, and public servant representing constituents of Creswell, Cottage Grove, West Eugene, Oakridge, Pleasant Hill, Middlefork and the McKenzie River communities on the Lane Community College Board of Education. Keating is a three-time elected delegate to the Democratic National Convention (2008, 2012, 2016) recently serving as Oregon’s State Caucus Chair for Bernie 2016. Nationally respected for his political organizing prowess, Keating has provided services for progressive organizations MoveOn.org, CREDO, We Are Wisconsin, and Democracy for America. Locally, Keating serves on the Lane Council of Government executive committee (LCOG), the Eugene Public Library Foundation Board (EPLF), and the Oregon Community College Association (OCCA).
Will O’Hearn – Library Services Director
Ashleigh Maier – Student Member
Ashleigh Maier holds a B.A. in Communication from Alma College, and is a student in the Master of Nonprofit Management program at the University of Oregon. Prior to pursuing graduate school, she was an AmeriCorps Volunteer in the realm of college access, and has a passion for educational equity initiatives. Maier is a Michigan native, but as an avid outdoor enthusiast, has easily found a home in Oregon. In her spare time, she enjoys hiking, traveling, and of course, reading contemporary fiction. She strongly believes in libraries and their ability to bring people together and spread a wealth of knowledge in communities.
Emeritus Foundation Members
Sue Ann Hinman
Nancy Oft Rose
Shirley Perez West