1000 Friends of Oregon Announces New Executive Director

Alyson Marchi-Young
Fri, 04/28/2017 - 11:45am

Long-time senior executive of The Nature Conservancy, Russ Hoeflich, appointed Executive Director of 1000 Friends

Portland, Oregon- April 28, 2017 – The Board of Directors of 1000 Friends of Oregon announced today that they have selected long-time conservation leader, Russ Hoeflich, to serve as the new Executive Director of 1000 Friends of Oregon, effective June 1, 2017.

Current Board President, Kurt Koehler stated, “The Board chose a seasoned Oregon conservation leader with an extraordinary record of success in helping nonprofits achieve their full potential. We are proud to have Russ join our team to guide 1000 Friends’ vision for Oregon forward.”

Russ has a long history of protecting Oregon lands. He served as the former State Director of the Oregon Chapter of The Nature Conservancy (TNC) and Vice President and Senior Policy Director for TNC’s national Restoring America’s Forests Program. He also worked on the Ballot Measure 49 campaign to restore the Oregon land use planning program. 

“I am honored to be joining 1000 Friends of Oregon. It is important that we engage every Oregon community in shaping our state so future generations can thrive here while enjoying our rich natural heritage. Most of my career has been focused on The Nature Conservancy, where I have developed wonderful relationships with conservation colleagues, forest, farm and ranch owners, nonprofit partners & leaders, and elected officials to find pragmatic common ground,” said Hoeflich.

Hoeflich brings a breadth of leadership experience to 1000 Friends of Oregon, which he will deploy to drive growth for the organization as they pursue ambitious policies in housing, transportation, farm and forest conservation, and community development. His deep passion for Oregon and the legacy of the state’s pioneering land use system drives Hoeflich’s vision for an even stronger, more impactful 1000 Friends in the years ahead.

1000 Friends’ founding Executive Director, Henry Richmond, has worked closely with Hoeflich on Oregon land use and conservation strategies. "This is a superb choice. Russ's extraordinary leadership was central to the 61-39 vote enacting Measure 49 in 2007, saving Oregon's land use laws and preventing rampant rural subdivisions” says Richmond. He is “forever grateful to him.”

Metro Councilor and former 1000 Friends Executive Director, Bob Stacey, also praised Hoeflich’s work to pass Measure 49. "Russ has demonstrated his strong leadership and support for land use planning. He was the million dollar fundraiser that helped our coalition pass measure 49 - ensuring our land use system would stay in place.” He continued, “Russ understands the value of land use planning, protecting Oregon's special places, and building great communities. I am very pleased to see he is coming on board to lead 1000 Friends of Oregon."

With roots in Portland going back to the late 1890’s, Russ Hoeflich immediately connected to 1000 Friends’ history. Founded by Governor Tom McCall in 1975, 1000 Friends was established to protect Oregon’s nascent land use laws – a pioneering legislation now modeled in many parts of the world. More than 40 years later, the organization uses those laws to address the impacts of rapid population growth, inequitable housing access, urban pressure on our farm and forest lands, the changing face of food production, climate change, and the need for a modern transportation system.
“The 1000 Friends team is one of Oregon’s most powerful forces to model how we will handle some of our most critical challenges. Russ is just the person to lead this team,” says Lynn Peterson, former Clackamas County Chair and presently serving as 1000 Friends’ Interim Executive Director.

"Oregon farmers and ranchers count on 1000 Friends to help defend our productive resource land from sprawl and other non-farm uses.” says Jim Gilbert, Owner of Northwoods Nursery and Co-Chair of 1000 Friends’ Farmers Advisory Committee. “Russ brings us proven leadership and fundraising skills, and a passion for protecting what is unique and valuable about our state. I am pleased that Russ will be contributing his many talents to our work and I welcome him to our team."

Hoeflich looks forward to connecting with the many people who make 1000 Friends of Oregon an effective advocate for land use and the many ways it supports Oregon’s quality of life.

1000 Friends of Oregon is a nonprofit land use advocacy organi­zation with offices in Bend, Eugene, Grants Pass, and Portland. At 1000 Friends, we love Oregon and work to protect it every day. We do this through our state’s land use planning program, ensuring it effectively works for all Oregonians. That means we have great communities for everyone, healthy working lands to provide resourc­es, and breathtaking iconic spaces protected for future generations. Founded in 1975, 1000 Friends works with Oregonians to enhance the state’s quality of life and is the only statewide group working for responsible land use across Oregon.