Board & Staff

The last election of the board was conducted at the Annual Meeting in October 2018.

Jim Rondone

Jim Rondone, President (Second consecutive term)

Jim joined the HPSO Board in 2007 after serving on the education and Gen(i)us committees. In 2010, he became First Vice President, and served as President from 2012-2014. He served as Immediate Past President until returning as President when a vacancy occurred in April 2016. Jim continues to be active with the Gen(i)us Series and other HPSO programs, including planning and escorting HPSO tours abroad. Jim gardens in Southwest Portland.

Tom Barreto

Tom Barreto, Vice President (First Term)

Tom is an optometrist and owner of Eyes on Broadway. A long-time HPSO volunteer, he joined the Board in 2010. He is chair of the Open Gardens Directory Committee, served on the 2015 Study Weekend Committee, and volunteers for other HPSO activities. Tom gardens in Northwest Portland.

Barb Christopher

Barb Christopher, Vice President (Second Consecutive Term)

Barb is an avid Pacific Northwest gardener who completed her Oregon State University Master Gardener training. She serves as chair of HPSO Membership/Development Committee and Garden Travel Committee. She also serves on the Media & Outreach Committee as publicity coordinator for HPSO speaker programs and plant sales. She has been a member of the Hortlandia Committee and a plant sale volunteer for a number of years. Barb is a former museum curator and director and continues to consult for museum collections and exhibitions. In recent years, she has also offered garden coaching and design services. She escorted the 2016 HPSO tour to Wales and the 2017 tour to Cornwall. Barb gardens in Northeast Portland.

Kate McMillan

Kate McMillan, Vice President (First Term)

Kate grew up in Connecticut, and has since lived in London, Washington DC, San Francisco, and now Portland. After being limited to houseplants for years​ through big-city living​, she fell head first into gardening with the purchase of her first home​ (and garden)​ in SE Portland in 2008. She’s owned and runs a web design company, Outbox Online, since 2009, and also a garden design business, Cultiverity, since 2014. ​Her home garden is a certified Backyard Habitat, and is filled with drought tolerant, low-maintenance plants from all over the world that showcase her love of texture and color. ​Kate​ has been a HPSO board member since 2016, and​ is an HPSO blogger ​as well as an advocate for social media (and other) marketing and outreach for HPSO to grow their platform. After updating the HPSO website, starting the HPSO blog, and learning about and contributing to all of HPSO's outreach activities by promoting them to existing and potential members online, she ​continues to have a keen interest in amplifying the Board's efforts towards reaching a new (and younger) audience.

SShari MacDonaldhari MacDonald, Secretary (First Term)

Shari MacDonald served on the HPSO Board from 2010 to 2016, including two prior terms as Secretary.  She serves as chair of HPSO's Grants & Scholarships Committee, and is also active in the Study Weekend Committee, Garden Conservancy Open Garden Day Tour, and the Westside Study Group.  Shari has a shade garden in Rock Creek. 


Jo Ann BonesJo Bones, Treasurer (First Term)

Jo Ann is a fifth generation Oregonian who worked for the State of Oregon for over 30 years, holding several executive, management, and administrative positions. After retirement, she trained as an Oregon State University Extension Master Gardener, and she has been active in the Multnomah MG Chapter and the Oregon Master Gardeners Association, holding office and serving on the Boards of both organizations. She has volunteered at Hortlandia for many years, is active in an HPSO interest group, and serves on the Garden Travel Committee. Jo Ann enjoys traveling with HPSO Tours where she has made many new HPSO friends. Jo Ann gardens in Northeast Portland.

Kate Blairstone

Kate Blairstone, Director-at-Large (Second Consecutive Term)

Kate Blairstone is an illustrator and surface pattern designer in Portland ( She oversees branding, social media and back office operations at Portland's beloved Besaw's restaurant. Kate volunteers her social media expertise for HPSO to reach other novice gardeners in the Portland area and connect with potential new members. Kate and two current Board members have grown HPSO's social media following to over 2,000 people across various channels. Kate's long interest in gardening expanded significantly when she and her husband purchased a home in St. Johns. She is transforming the garden into her own Mediterranean paradise.

Amy Campion

Amy Campion, Director-at-Large (Third Consecutive Term)

Amy moved to Portland in 2013 after working at a Cincinnati-area nursery for 16 years. She's now a freelance garden writer, editor, and photographer. Amy is a regular contributor to the HPSO Quarterly, and she revived HPSO’s seed and propagation efforts by forming the Seedy Characters study group in 2015. Amy is a garden blogger ( and the co-author of Gardening in the Pacific Northwest: The Complete Homeowner's Guide (Timber Press, 2017), with Paul Bonine. She gardens in Northeast Portland.

Loree Bohl

Loree Bohl, Director-at-Large (Second Consecutive Term)

Loree began gardening in NE Portland in 2005. Her love for agaves, cactus and all things spiky, was the inspiration for her blog name, Danger Garden (, which she began in early 2009. Looking at her garden, and blog, you might think she comes from the Desert Southwest but she’s actually a Pacific Northwest native who thrives on the vibrant horticulture scene here in Portland. A freelance garden writer, Loree is a firm believer there is always room for one more plant.

Laura HeldrethLaura Heldreth

Laura Heldreth is an adjunct professor at Clark Community College where she teaches gardening courses through the community education program.  She has her own small business as a garden coach and gardener, working with clients on sustainable edible and ornamental gardening.  Laura volunteers through the Clark County WSU Master Gardeners organization and is recognized this year as its Master Gardener of the Year.  She is also working on a new project, Pollinator Posse, to promote installation of pollinator gardens.  Laura gardens in Vancouver.

Jeanne DeBenedetti-Keyes

Jeanne DeBenedetti-Keyes, Director-at-Large (First Term)

Jeanne has been a key member of the Gen(i)us Series for years and states a desire to take a more active role in volunteering at HPSO, participating in the planning processes for HPSO meetings, special programs and possibly the HPSO Quarterly. She's a home gardener with 17 years of experience working in her Portland city garden. For the last seven years, she's been working with Debbie Teashon, creator of, to write informative articles and blogs pertaining to gardening on the rainy side of Western Oregon and Washington. Her background and professional training is in Geography. She works for the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) as a GIS (Geographic Information Systems) Specialist, providing database development, analysis and mapping services to manage BLM public lands in Oregon and Washington. She's personally interested in ecosystems and biomes, and gardens "geographically", collecting plants from a particular location, whether it is Pacific Northwest natives or woodland plants of China.

Beth Hansen-Winter

Beth Hansen-Winter, Director-at-Large (Second Consecutive Term)

Beth Hansen-Winter is a photographer and book designer who happily moved to the PNW in late 2002. She's lived in multiple countries and multiple states but immediately fell in love with Oregon and now says she wouldn't live anywhere else. Her gardening addiction began in 1994 when she and her husband moved to a country rental in Sonoma County, CA, and after 21 years of obsessive collecting, she considers herself a certified plant geek. She finds gardening challenging and endlessly creative, often meditative, and a wonderful way to meet wonderful people. Beth recently assumed co-chair responsibilities for HPSO's botanical exhibits.

Richard Hoffman

Richard Hoffman, Director-at-Large (First Term)

As a teacher for 28 years, Richard honed his skills in educational presentation development, motivation, and writing. He has also worked with a cataloguer/publisher (including writing descriptions and researching mailing options) and done some book editing. Gardening for over 40 years, his interests range from identifying edible wildflowers to working edible plants into a mostly ornamental garden, these currently include wintergreen and guava from Chile, root vegetables from Peru, and fruits/vines from China.

Eloise MorganEloise Morgan, Director-at-Large (First Term)

Eloise Morgan, our new Quarterly magazine managing editor, was appointed to Director at large.  Eloise, a transplant from New York, lives in Vancouver where she and her husband are hard at work creating a new garden.   Upon arrival to the PNW, she immediately volunteered to assist with the production of HPSO's Quarterly magazine.  A long-time amateur gardener, she is also a member of the HPSO Clark County Interest Group and a former president of the New York Garden Club founded by Louise Beebe Wilder.  A retired lawyer, Eloise has extensive volunteer experience in writing and editing and has served on numerous non-profit boards and municipal committees..

Phillip Oliver

Phillip Oliver, Director-at-Large (First Term)

Phillip relocated to the PNW (Vancouver WA) from Alabama in late 2015. He was a librarian/professor at the University of North Alabama. He previously served on the Beautification Board in Florence, Alabama and completed the Master Gardener program there. In addition to being an avid gardener, he is a garden writer (State by State Gardening / Alabama Gardener), a blogger (Dirt Therapy) and a photographer. Phillip has volunteered at Hortlandia the last two years and seems to visit (and write about) a HPSO open garden every weekend.

Adria Sparhawk

Adria Sparhawk, Director-at-Large (First Term)

Adria is active in the NE Portland community and is the owner of Thicket Nursery on NE Alberta Street . As such she brings administrative experience and leadership skills to the HPSO, as well as learned resourcefulness and "the ability to multi-task to ensure projects are completed on time and on budget." She mentioned a desire to "create and implement events that will attract new members to the Hardy Plant Society of Oregon" but is open to jumping into whatever projects need attention. Adria volunteers with the HPSO as part of the After Hours Committee and also works as a garden designer/coach.

Scott Weber

Scott Weber, Director-at-Large (Second Consecutive Term)

Scott Weber is the Production Manager at Portland Monthly magazine. He has an unquenchable passion for plants, gardens, and design, and maintains his own garden blog, Rhone Street Gardens: Adventures of a Garden Geek. He gardens in Portland's Brooklyn Neighborhood and is active with HPSO's social media on Facebook and Instagram.


Bruce Wakefield, Office Director
Lisa Fuller, Assistant Manager
Cheryl Kleinsmith, Bookkeeper