Our Team

Eduardo Romero, Program Assistant

My name is Eduardo Romero and I was born in Bend, Oregon. Unlike many other Latinx I was fortunate enough to get into the outdoors. I participate in most of the major […]

Izzy Mize, NatureHoods Coordinator

Isabel Mize (she/her) grew up in Hershey, Pennsylvania and received her B.S. from the University of Vermont in Burlington, Vermont. Isabel is an AmeriCorps member serving as the NatureHoods Coordinator […]

Zavier Borja, Vámonos Outside Program Coordinator

Zavier Borja (he, him) is a first generation Mexican-American, born and raised in Central Oregon. His passions include serving our youth and communities, equity, and getting outside. Zavier has worked […]

Katie Chipko, Executive Director

Katie Chipko (she, her) has been with the Children’s Forest of Central Oregon since 2012.  Previously, she has worked as an educator and Program Coordinator at North Cascades Institute in […]

Board of Directors


Rika Ayotte (President)

Executive Director, Discover Your Forest

Robi Phinney (Vice President)

Vice Principal, La Pine Middle School

Gwen Jones (Secretary)

Project Manager, Central Oregon Health Council

Kevin Cole (Treasurer)

Chief Financial Officer, Mid-Oregon Credit Union

Sue Boettner

Recreation Services Manager, Bend Park and Recreation District

Linda Bonotto

Retired School Teacher

Zavier Borja

Central Oregon Ambassador, Latino Outdoors; Mentor, Bend-La Pine School District

Hayley Etnier

Behavior Program Administrator, Bend-La Pine Schools

Tamarra Harris

System Pediatrics Clinics Manager, Mosaic Medical

Lynnanne Hayes

Vice President, Visionary Homes

Anna Higgins (Ex officio)

Director of Innovation, High Desert Education Service District

Kolleen Miller

Education Director, Upper Deschutes Watershed Council

Kileen Mitchell (Ex officio)

Partnerships and Conservation Education Program Manager, Deschutes National Fore

Tory Kurtz

Rangeland Management Specialist, Ochoco National Forest

Kinsey Martin

Dual Immersion Program Director, Bend-La Pine Schools

Jill Nishball

Visitor Experiences Coordinator, Oregon State Parks

Lauren Williams

Communications Manager, The Environmental Center




Equity Committee:  Committee Job Description

Laura Handy (co-chair), Zavier Borja (co-chair), Kathya Avila Choquez, Priscilla Calleros, Karen Gentry, Becca Gilbert, Alyssa Grove, Amanda Jamison, Kecia Kubota, Kinsey Martin, Tyler McRae, Kileen Mitchell, Carolyn Nesbitt, Jill Nishball, Sasha Sulia, Sophia Anguilla, Karina Smith, Mary Bowker, Katie Chipko, Jacqueline Ruggieri, Amanda Odell

Program Committee:  Committee Job Description

Katie Chipko (chair), Alyssa Grove, Karen Gentry, Carolyn Nesbitt, Becca Gilbert, Kileen Mitchell, Jill Nishball, Jennifer Mickelson, Tyler McRae, Eric Denzler, Amanda Accamando, Amanda Odell, Jacqueline Ruggieri

Marketing Committee:  Committee Job Description

Lauren Williams (chair), Kassidy Kern, Amy Jensen, Becca Burda, Katie Chipko,Amanda Odell

Fundraising Committee:  Committee Job Description

Kolleen Miller (chair), Bruce Abernethy, Rika Ayotte, Dana Whitelaw, Lynnanne Hayes, Lauren Williams

Health Committee:  Committee Job Description

Tamarra Harris (chair), Dr. Rebecca Hicks, Dr. Leslie Rust, Dr. Kristi Nix, Gwen Jones, Sue Boettner, Rebekah Berry, Tory Kurtz, Nicole Lex, Anna Morris

Committees are open to community members.  Please contact katie@childrensforestco.org if you have an interest in joining a committee.




The Children’s Forest of Central Oregon welcomes students and participants of any race, color, national and ethnic origin, religion, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, military or marital status, age, sensory, physical or mental disability to all the rights, privileges, programs and activities generally accorded or made available to students and participants of our programs.

Equal Employment Opportunity: The Children’s Forest of Central Oregon does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, gender, gender expression, gender identity, sexual orientation, physical or mental disability, military, genetic information, ancestry, marital status, age, citizenship or any other basis prohibited by law in any of its policies or programs.