Rebecca Cate was welcomed onto the Earth Ministry board in 2010. A mother, wife, homemaker, attorney and passionate environmentalist, Rebecca is the daughter of an activist Methodist clergyman and was raised in the United Methodist Church. After obtaining an undergraduate degree from Willamette University, Rebecca attended the Willamette University School of Law and then spent eight years as a criminal defense attorney with the Seattle-King County Public Defender Association. Currently, Rebecca serves as managing attorney with the non-profit organization Legal Counsel for Youth and Children. She represents youth and children in the welfare system. Rebecca loves to garden, sew, bake, hike/backpack, cross-country ski, listen to classical music and make annual pilgrimages to Holden Village with her husband and two children..
Originally hailing from the Midwest, Anna now calls Seattle home and lives in the Mount Baker neighborhood with her husband and their pet dog and turtle. Anna has a Bachelor of Science in Geology from Hope College in Holland, Michigan and brings over eight years of experience implementing environmental programs. During her life-long quest to build just and healthy communities through environmental stewardship, she has worn many hats including: community organizer, coalition builder, and fundraiser. She currently works at the Seattle Housing Authority as the Recycling and Waste Reduction Analyst. Anna and her husband Garrison attend Madrona Grace Presbyterian Church.
Nancy L. Berry is the Director of Congregational Care at First United Methodist Church in Bellevue, where she organized the church’s environmental team and assisted them in becoming an Earth Ministry Greening Congregation. The team hosts an annual Earth Friendly Gardening seminar and plant exchange, leads summer Taize services dedicated to honoring creation, and sponsors other educational events – most recently dealing with clean energy. A life-long western Washingtonian, Nancy enjoys volksmarch and bird-watching. She holds a Master’s degree in Pastoral Studies (MAPS) from the School of Theology and Ministry at Seattle University and joined the board in 2013.
Dr. Brian Naasz
Brian is currently a Clinical Assistant Professor of Chemistry at Pacific Lutheran University where he teaches Environmental and Analytical Chemistry. Previously, he worked in a variety of research, management, and business development roles in the specialty chemical industry. Brian has a BS in Chemistry from Seattle University and a PhD in Physical Chemistry and Catalysis from the University of California, Berkeley. He was an Earth Ministry board member from 2005-2013, during which time he served as both Board Chair and Treasurer, and returned to the board in 2015. Brian has also provided leadership on the board of Peace Community Center in Tacoma. His church home is Agnus Dei Lutheran church in Gig Harbor, Washington.
A member of the Government Relations team for The Nature Conservancy of Washington, Tom helps develop strategic partnerships across political and ideological lines with corporate leaders, elected officials, government agencies and community organizations in support of natural resource policy and funding. Prior to the Conservancy, Tom served as the State Policy Director for the Washington Wildlife and Recreation Coalition. He currently is the advocacy chair of the Washington Association of Land Trusts as well as serving on the board of the Washington Wildlife and Recreation Coalition, the Big Tent Outdoor Recreation Coalition, and as Leadership Fellow with the Henry “Scoop” Jackson Foundation. Tom joined the board in 2015.
Rev. Dr. Marilyn Cornwell
Marilyn is an Episcopal pastor at Church of the Ascension, Seattle. Her scientific vocation and love of Earth began as a child in Iowa, dissecting tadpoles, germinating seeds, falling out of trees, and playing outside in all seasons. Her first foray into the North Cascades was in 1982 as a flat-land Texan in Outward Bound. As a molecular biologist, she migrated to Seattle from Wisconsin in 1991 to join the faculty of Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center. Her shift of vocation from bench science to parish ministry was inspired by Earth Ministry’s co-founder, the Rev. Carla Pryne. Marilyn’s congregation is an Earth Ministry Greening Congregation and GreenFaith Sanctuary. She is a board member of the Church Council of Greater Seattle, the Social Justice Committee of the Episcopal Diocese of Olympia, and speaks for Earth protection whenever asked. She is passionate about the hidden life of trees, fair-weather cycling, mountain hiking, and the integration of faith in climate justice.
Reuben spent most of his life in the Triangle area of North Carolina, growing up with his family in Raleigh and attending college and graduate school in Chapel Hill. After graduating with a Master of Social Work in May of 2015, Reuben moved to Seattle where his partner is beginning her residency in family medicine and he plans to work as a hospice social worker. Reuben studied Women’s Studies and Psychology in college and went on to work for three years at the local rape crisis center. His second year internship in graduate school was with North Carolina Interfaith Power & Light (NCIPL), which allowed him to engage in the environmental work he is passionate about in a more personal and whole-hearted way. Reuben joined the board in 2015.
Rev. Steve Grumm
Steve is a retired Lutheran (ELCA) parish pastor/community resource facilitator. He has served parishes and communities in Wyoming, Colorado, Oregon and Washington. He resides with his wife Carolee, in the northwest corner of Seattle in the Ballard community. Presently he serves on the Safe Parking Steering Team administering a neighborhood grant from the city of Seattle; the Ballard Community Task Force on Hunger and Homelessness; and the Earth Ministry Board of Directors. In the past decade he has found energy and community in his volunteer and political advocacy work with The People of Puget Sound, Friends of the Cedar River Watershed, Ballard Food Bank, Lutheran Community Services, Faith Action Network and Earth Ministry. Steve very much enjoys urban and forest hiking, gardening, and the challenge of sustainable living practices.
As a lifelong resident of Washington, Evita has enjoyed the diversity of our state and the incredible gifts it offers. Originally from Moses Lake, Evita also has lived in Morton, Seattle, Pullman (where she attended Washington State University), and Spokane where she now resides. Environment, social justice, and service are integral components of Evita’s life. As a parent, former Girl Scout/Boy Scout leader, youth leader, and camp director she has educated others about our responsibility toward creation and future generations. As a member of the Faith and Environment Network, she provided opportunities to network, educate, and empower others to get involved. Evita currently serves as the Chair for Environmental Sustainability for the Episcopal Diocese of Spokane in addition to being on the property committee at the Cathedral of St. John, incorporating sustainable and non-toxic policies into all aspects of church life. Evita and her husband Lyle have three adult children.
Chris grew up in northwestern Wisconsin and graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison with a degree in Rural Sociology and certificate in Environmental Studies. After college, he moved to Seattle and has lived here for the past 8 years. He works to create a more compassionate and livable world by investing his time in the local non-profit community. Some of his favorite organizations include (please look them up!) Earth Ministry, Out In Front, Seattle Tilth, and Camp Erin – King County. Professionally, he’s part of the Social Justice Fund NW development team, working to engage Pacific Northwest donors in the deep process of learning about race, class, fundraising, and social change. Chris is also a board game nerd, hardcore Trekkie, adventure seeker, and will go to great lengths to pet any and every French Bulldog he sees.
Whitney is a life-long United Methodist and pastor’s kid originally from St. Louis, MO. Born with a sense of adventure and love for all God’s creations, Whitney’s passion for environmental concerns blossomed during her studies at Emory University in Atlanta, GA. She made the cross-country move to Seattle in 2015 and currently works as the Education and Communications Specialist at the Washington Poison Center. Whitney is member of University Temple United Methodist Church and helps to promote social justice advocacy within the congregation and beyond as part of the Church and Society Team. Whitney loves running, vegetarian food, board games, and cat videos.
Rev. John Rosenberg
John is a passionate advocate for healthy watersheds and the life they support. He serves as a volunteer docent at the Kennedy Creek Salmon Trail where he introduces visitors of all ages to the miracle of returning wild salmon. He also volunteers with the South Puget Sound Salmon Enhancement Group, the Stream Team, and the Deschutes Estuary Restoration Team. John recently retired after 35 years as an ordained pastor of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. He served congregations in Oregon and Southwest Washington and as a campus pastor and college instructor. He taught courses in history and Biblical studies at Portland State University, Seattle University, and Pacific Lutheran University and currently writes a regular guest column for The Olympian newspaper on environmental and social issues. John lives with his wife, Nancy Faaren, in Tumwater, Washington.
Rev. W. Thomas Soeldner
Tom is a retired Lutheran minister and educator. For the past 17 years he has worked part time as a consultant to organizations and an executive coach for non-profit, academic, and public service leaders. During his career Tom has served as a parish pastor, an elementary and high school principal, a college and seminary lecturer, a community educator/organizer, and the director for the Southern Africa programs of the Center for Global Education of Augsburg College. Tom serves on the Professional Advisory Group for Providence Sacred Heart CPE program in Spokane. He co-chairs the Executive Committee of the Upper Columbia River Group of the Sierra Club, and co-chaired the Faith and Environment Network before its joining with Earth Ministry. Tom also participates in the Columbia River Round Table, an international alliance seeking to modernize and redress injustices in the Columbia River Treaty between Canada and the United States. Tom is an avid hiker and birder, and lives with his wife, Linda Finney, on forty acres of managed forest and native grassland south of Spokane, Washington.
Ryan was born and raised in Wisconsin, where he grew into his love of nature and learned to appreciate a strong sense of community. Ryan has called Seattle home for the past ten years and has enjoyed fostering his love of the outdoors by exploring the more diverse landscape of the Pacific Northwest. He works at Providence Hospice of Seattle as a Volunteer Coordinator, and is currently studying Social and Human Services at Seattle Central with plans to become an elementary school counselor. Ryan has gained a deeper appreciation for nature and the fight to preserve it by volunteering with Earth Ministry for many years, the Daniel Woo Children’s Garden, and Seattle Tilth. He currently sits on the Marketing and Development committee of the LGBTQ leadership program Out in Front, and is excited to join the board of Earth Ministry..
Sr. Jessica Taylor, SP
Sr. Jessica is a Seattle native with a strong passion for and interest in the environment, and joined the board in 2015. She has been an active member of the Reclaiming Earth Committee for the Sisters of Providence Mother Joseph Province and has participated in many local environmental causes. Jessica graduated from Seattle University with a MA in Relationship and Pastoral Therapy in 2014 and is working towards her Marriage and Family Therapy License. She is currently working as a Counselor and Care Manager Jubilee Women’s Center at Sojourner Place, a transitional residence and program for homeless women. Jessica is excited to be on the Earth Ministry board and work with others to effect environmental change in our world.