We’re excited to announce two staff promotions to celebrate Greg Holmes and Brett Morgan’s hard work, dedication, and ongoing commitment to shaping a better Oregon for people and our planet through land use research, advocacy, and enforcement. Greg will now be our Working Lands Director, and Brett will fill the role of Transportation Director and Legislative Manager.
Greg Holmes, Working Lands Director
Greg joined 1000 Friends of Oregon in 2002 as a regional advocate in Southern Oregon, and since 2015 he has been our Food Systems Program Director. For more than 20 years, Greg has assisted Oregonians in understanding and influencing key land use decisions that shape their communities for generations to come. Greg played a pivotal role in securing regionally significant industrial lands so that more high-quality jobs can be created for Oregonians. He also helped found the Oregon Community Food Systems Network and has led four cohorts through 1000 Friends’ Land Use Leadership Initiative, known as LULI. Recently, Greg organized support in rightsizing Oregon’s approach to climate change solutions, helping secure a $10 million seed fund for natural climate solutions.
“One of the things I have appreciated most about working with 1000 Friends of Oregon is how the organization – and my job – continually evolve to meet changing needs and to take advantage of emerging opportunities,” Greg says.
Greg will now be our Working Lands Director, working with our Policy Committee, Forestry Agricultural Advisory Committee, affiliates, and membership to identify top threats to our land use protections for our farms, forests, and watersheds. The Working Lands Director works with the Working Lands staff to listen, learn, and partner with Oregonians to create policy solutions, secure investments, fortify new partnerships, and enforce our land use program.
“With this new position I’ll be able to call upon two decades of knowledge, experience, and building connections as we help Oregon figure out the role that natural and working lands will play in the state’s answer to climate change – while continuing to address physical and political threats to the agricultural and forest products sectors of our economy and the land that both depend on,”Greg notes. “We have a great team working on these issues – I am excited to see where the work takes us.”
Brett Morgan, Transportation Director and Legislative Manager
Brett joined 1000 Friends in 2019, focusing on critical land use planning conservation and development issues in the Portland metro area. His geography expanded to issues across Oregon, assisting on major opportunities and threats to our state’s land use planning program. He has worked with Oregonians to defeat proposed road extensions onto our farms and into our watersheds, helped rightsize massive highway construction projects, brought millions of dollars to Oregon for transit-oriented development and transit operations, and solidified new relationships with partner organizations and local businesses.
Brett will now be our Transportation Director and Legislative Manager, a role that works with the Great Communities team to partner with Oregonians to create policy and funding concepts that provide cheaper, more convenient, and cleaner ways for people and goods to get where they need to go. The Legislative Manager will work closely with our Deputy Director, Mary Kyle McCurdy.
"With my role shifting to a statewide focus, I am looking forward to expanding my policy skills into spaces where 1000 Friends has been a leader and collaborator, such as increasing housing options or wildfire planning. I am also very excited to work more closely with our fantastic legislative lead and Deputy Director, Mary Kyle McCurdy. Mary Kyle has such a sterling reputation in the capitol it's a little daunting!” Brett says. “1000 Friends of Oregon continues to be such a supportive work environment for professional growth, while also giving me flexibility. This is exemplified by 1000 Friends' support for my graduate studies. I am also excited to be entering the final year of my Master in Public Policy Program at Portland State University, which has been a balancing act to say the least while working full time."
Healthy communities don’t just happen. They require a strong land use planning program. But keeping our land use planning program strong isn’t a given either. That’s why we’re committed to recruiting and retaining talented, committed, hardworking staff here at 1000 Friends. It’s also why every 70 cents of each dollar our members donate goes straight into our land use research, advocacy, and enforcement.
Please join us in congratulating Brett and Greg. And, thank you for your continued support of Oregon’s only statewide land use watchdog.