Dedicated advocates for community health
Our board members give their time and talents freely to help improve the wellbeing of our community. These individuals bring their varied skills and experiences to the foundation, and thoughtfully participate in its governance and guidance. The dedication of our board is how we are able to fulfill our mission of investing resources to improve the health of our Ashland, Talent, and Phoenix communities.
Cindy has been a resident of Ashland for 30 years, following her parents and siblings from the Chicago area. After raising two sons and working as a bookkeeper for several local businesses, Cindy and her son purchased Rogue Valley Roasting Company.
While co-running the business she was able to use her love of cooking to expand the food offerings at the coffee shop. Handing the reins over to her son completely three years ago, she now manages her own commercial kitchen utilized by several local vendors.
Soon after arriving in Ashland, Cindy began volunteering for many different organizations. She spent a term on the board of the Ashland Family YMCA, the board of the Mt. Ashland Racing Association, the board of the Ashland High Ski & Snowboard team and more recently two terms as a member of the Ashland Chamber of Commerce board of directors serving two years as President. She is also a longtime volunteer of the Ashland Independent Film Festival and spent a couple of years helping coach the Ashland High Crew Team.
Cindy is excited to be on the Ashland Community Health Foundation Board, and looks forward to supporting our local community. Her life these days involves work, volunteering, rowing, hiking, gardening, and chickens. But mostly she enjoys the time she spends with her grandchildren and the rest of her family.
Ed is a native Oregonian and has lived in Ashland since 1979. He earned his Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Oregon prior to moving to Ashland.
As part of the Ashland community, he began a successful career as an insurance professional and has enjoyed working with all types of businesses and individuals over the years at Ashland Insurance. In addition, he has been actively involved in a variety of civic and charitable organizations in Ashland.
Ed’s involvement with the Ashland Community Health Foundation began more than 10 years ago. He has held the position of Treasurer, Vice President, President, and now Past President of the board of directors. He has continuously served on the asset management committee during this time. Obviously, the foundation holds a special place in Ed’s heart and has his unwavering support.
Zeph Robertson moved to Ashland with his family when he was five years old. After college, Zeph married Kari Coldwell and moved to Sherwood, Oregon.
Several years after the birth of their first child, they decided they wanted to raise their children in the community he remembered so fondly from his own childhood. After their return to Ashland, Zeph served as an assistant manager at US Bank for four years and then went to work at Harfst and Associates, Inc., as Director of Client Services.
Zeph has now settled into a career as a real estate agent with Absolute Realty and enjoys the long-term relationships he develops with his loyal clients. Zeph and Kari happily reside in Ashland with their two daughters, Mila and Alayla, and two sons, Rai and Ross. Zeph is proud to give back to the community he was raised in by serving on the Ashland Community Health Foundation Board.
Melissa Grudin was born and raised in New York where she graduated from SUNY Cortland. She moved to California and became a licensed Financial Securities Registered Representative and built a 40-year career, emphasizing retirement, income, and estate planning.
Having visited and admired life in Ashland for years, it was finally time for Melissa to retire. She and her husband Jeff, a newly retired veterinarian, moved to Ashland in March 2018. Giving back has always been part of her DNA. In California, Melissa volunteered at El Camino Hospital in Silicon Valley entertaining patients and their guests as the “Jester of Music and Mirth.” She was active in their foundation and served on their Planned Giving Council for over 10 years. Health care has always been a priority! These are challenging times, and Melissa is excited to be a board member and contribute to the growth of the foundation.
In addition, Melissa volunteers for several organizations including the Tudor Guild and Temple Emek Shalom. She and Jeff have five children between them and four grandchildren. They enjoy traveling, staying fit, sailing, and spending time with family, friends, and pets.
Karen Drescher moved to Ashland in 1974 to obtain a degree in nursing from Southern Oregon College, now Southern Oregon University. In 1976, she started her career as an RN at Rogue Valley Medical Center, now Asante Rogue Regional Medical Center.
In 1980, she moved to Los Angeles to work at Cedar Sinai Medical Center in the Emergency Department. Karen returned to Ashland in 1991 so her children could start grade school here. Karen worked full-time as a registered nurse for 20 years and then decided that she needed a more flexible schedule to care for her two children, and became a realtor. Karen retired in 2016. She joined the board in 2013 and currently chairs the development and Evans Nursing Scholarship committees.
Karen lives in Ashland with her husband, Allen. Karen’s love of the Ashland community and her desire to help our local health systems motivates her to further the work of the foundation.
Dr. Larry Gibbs is an Associate Professor of Sociology and Chair of the Healthcare Administration program at Southern Oregon University.
As a trained Family Demographer, he uses quantitative and demographic methodologies to investigate issues pertaining to health disparities among various populations.
Larry believes using research is important for community development and has been part of grant funding proposal efforts to assess community health care needs in the valley since 2017. As a member of the Ashland Community Health Foundation, this gives him an even greater opportunity to serve Ashland and its environs.
On a personal note, Larry is married to his best friend, Latoya. Both are avid soccer, track and field, and basketball enthusiasts and enjoy the beach, reading, traveling, and spending quality time with family and friends.
Laurel spent the majority of her career working in health care. She has been a controller, finance director, and has held many interim financial and operational roles in her capacity as a consultant.
She has worked for all sizes of health organizations, both for-profit and not-for-profit.
Laurel has served on various boards and committees, holding officer roles on small boards that benefit activities she enjoys. She was on both the finance committee and board of advocates for Planned Parenthood of the Greater Northwest. As a board member on her family’s charitable foundation, The Sharkey Foundation, Laurel has expanded her philanthropic influence through funding needed services for children at a number of well-deserving charities. She has been a strong supporter of various causes, and has participated in a number of challenging fundraising efforts, including the Ride Across Minnesota to support MS and the Susan G. Komen 3-Day Walk to support Breast Cancer Research.
Laurel moved to Ashland in 2016 from Seattle, Washington, where she lived and worked for the past 25 years. She has a strong sense of community and enjoys the connections she has formed by serving on the Ashland Community Health Foundation Board.
Tiffanie Lambert is Assistant Superintendent of Teaching and Learning at Phoenix-Talent Schools. Tiffanie has been an Oregon public educator for 22 years, and has served as special education teacher, elementary principal, middle school principal, special education director, and curriculum director.
She holds a B.A. in Education from Washington State University and an M.Ed. in Educational Leadership from the University of Oregon.
On September 8, 2020, a wildfire swept quickly through the towns of Phoenix and Talent, destroying the homes of ⅓ of the students. Phoenix-Talent Schools has been critical in the fire response and rebuilding of their community, as well as navigating through the COVID-19 pandemic. Tiffanie serves as Logistics Lead in the emergency response, in addition to her duties overseeing and managing federal programs, special education services, and curriculum.
Tiffanie has three children, a grandchild, and two goldendoodles. She enjoys camping in her 1984 VW Westy (and relaxing while her husband frequently repairs the van). She is passionate about increasing the inclusion of students with disabilities, raising the voices of traditionally marginalized groups in education, and ensuring that every student feels a sense of belonging and acceptance.
Jeff McCullough is a Certified Financial Planner (CFP®) professional and owner of Koenig Investment Advisory, LLC. Jeff works with individuals, families, and businesses who require comprehensive financial planning and investment advice.
Prior to joining Koenig Investment Advisory in 2014, Jeff lived in Seattle where he worked with several highly respected wealth management teams. He got his start in the financial services industry in 2006 after earning a bachelor’s degree in finance from Seattle University.
Jeff is a member of the Southern Oregon Estate Planning Council, Rotary Club of Ashland Lithia Springs, and a past board member of the Ashland Schools Foundation and Highline Schools Foundation. Even though Jeff resides in Ashland, he remains an avid boater and member of the Seattle Yacht Club. When not working, Jeff, his wife Alexi, and their two kids enjoy traveling, boating, and almost any outdoor adventure.
Liz Murphy is an independent Certified Financial Planner (CFP®) professional and is affiliated with Raymond James Financial Services. Liz earned her B.A. and M.B.A. from Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles.
As a dedicated volunteer she is involved with a diverse group of organizations including Ashland Community Health Foundation where she has served as President. She also dedicates her time to the American Association of University Women and United Way’s Women Living Leadership program.
As a 27-year resident of Ashland, Liz appreciates all the aspects of life that Southern Oregon offers to all of us and looks forward to her young grandchildren benefitting from being raised here.
Judy moved from Yreka, California, to beautiful Ashland over 10 years ago. Prior to that, she lived in the Bay Area and worked as an elementary school teacher for 32 years, and a portrait photographer for 22 years.
She now enjoys being a potter and grandmother to her two grandsons.
Judy has enjoyed being a volunteer with the Ashland Chamber of Commerce as Greeters co-chair, and as chair of the 4th of July Celebration for two years. She has also volunteered for the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, giving her time freely to organizations that help our community thrive. She’s excited now to work with the Ashland Community Health Foundation Board and fabulous staff.
Jane has lived in Oregon for more than 30 years, volunteering for arts and educational causes. Prior to moving to Ashland from Eugene in 2000, she served on the Eugene Public Arts Commission, helping to organize and produce the Mayor’s Art Show.
She also served on the Parent Advisory Board of Roosevelt Middle School in Eugene and the board of directors of the Marin Waldorf School in San Rafael, California. From 2004 through 2010, Jane was on the board of directors of Mediation Works, serving a three-year term as president during that time.
Jane received her Bachelor of Arts degree in rhetoric from UC Berkeley and a Master of Science from the University of Oregon in rhetoric and composition. She followed with interest the change that came to Ashland Community Hospital as a result of its affiliation with Asante, and — when she had the occasion to use hospital services — she experienced firsthand the great care it provides. Jane and her husband, John, have two adult daughters and three grandchildren. John is the former mayor of Ashland.
Garrison F. (Gary) Turner practiced law for five decades, beginning in 1973, in California until 1985, and then in Oregon when he and his family moved to Ashland. He recently retired as a partner at Davis, Hearn, Anderson, & Turner, P.C., in Ashland.
Gary was an experienced trial lawyer, handling more than 100 jury trials and thousands of criminal cases, business and real estate disputes, family law matters, construction disputes, and construction-defect litigation; as well as insurance coverage and related litigation, all during most of his law practice. For the past 15 years, he specialized in estate planning, preparing wills, trusts, and other estate planning documents for his clients, and conducted probate and trust administration proceedings.
Gary received his B.A. in history from the University of California at Berkeley in 1969, and graduated from the University of California, Hastings College of Law in 1972. He was a member of the Hastings Thurston Society (scholastic honorary organization) during law school.
He has been a passionate advocate for health care services in the Ashland area for many years, first serving on this board beginning in 2009.
Gary met his wife Pamela – who is also an attorney, and currently Ashland’s Municipal Court Judge – in San Diego in 1974, and they were married in 1981. Gary is a member of the Ashland Rotary Club.
In his free time, Gary enjoys reading, golf, photography, traveling, gardening, and spending time with his family.
Brian retired from the foundation board in 2012 after a combined 12 years of service, and now serves as an emeritus board member. However, the time he served as a board member is just one chapter in decades of work he has done to help keep Ashland’s community thriving.
Brian has served on the foundation’s real estate, finance, strategic planning, and — most recently — the asset management committee as the hospital negotiated a new affiliation with Asante. He was also recognized with the 2010 the Distinguished Service Award for service to the community through the hospital and the foundation.
Chuck Butler retired from the board in 2012 after a combined 15 years of service. He now continues to make his knowledge and wisdom available to the foundation as an emeritus board member.
He served in many capacities on the board, including board president, and spent time on the foundation’s executive, finance, real estate, strategic planning, nominating, and fundraising committees.
A longtime Ashland resident and now retired owner of the Butler Automotive Group, he has contributed his time and talent to many community organizations including the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Southern Oregon University Foundation and the Rotary Club of Ashland. In 1994, he was recognized for his service to the hospital, foundation, and community with the annual Distinguished Service Award.
A lifelong Ashland resident and attorney, Jack Davis has volunteered with many Southern Oregon nonprofits, and wanted to offer his expertise to the foundation by joining its board in 2009. While on the Ashland Community Health Foundation board, Jack was a member of the real estate, governance, asset management, and executive committees.
Jack has been a partner at Davis, Hearn, Anderson & Turner since 1976 and has volunteered his time providing pro bono legal services to the foundation. In 2015 he was honored with the Distinguished Service Award for his service to the foundation and community, and in 2017 he was appointed to the emeritus board.
Dedicated to nonprofit service, Jack has also served on boards for Rogue Valley Symphony, American Red Cross, Lyric Theater Company, Personal Achievement Center, the Reed and Carolee Walker Fund Advisory Committee of the Oregon Community Foundation, and the World Wildlife Fund.
Kurt Knudsen served on the board for nine years and now serves as an emeritus board member. We are grateful for his contributions of time and talents in providing pro bono legal services to the foundation throughout the years.
Kurt has also been a board member with the American Heart Association and the Ashland YMCA, and teaches business law at Southern Oregon University. He was honored for his years of service to the foundation with the 2000 Distinguished Service Award.
Longtime former Ashland resident Marjorie Lininger retired from the foundation board in 2021 after a combined 12 years of service, focusing her efforts on stewardship and the Evans Endowed Nursing Scholarship.
During her time away from board service she continued to serve on the Evans Endowed Nursing Scholarship committee. Since she retired from her career as a middle school teacher and principal, she has served on the board of directors of the Ashland Family YMCA, the Reed and Carolee Walker Fund Advisory Committee of the Oregon Community Foundation, and the Session of First Presbyterian Church. Marjorie was married to the late Gregg Lininger and proudly claims two married children and four grandchildren.
Marjorie was also recognized with the 2013 Distinguished Service Award for service to the community through the hospital and the foundation.
Jed Meese retired from the foundation’s board in 2007 after a combined 17 years of service. He has continued his involvement as an emeritus board member since 2009.
During his tenure on the board, he served as president and spent time on the foundation’s executive, finance, real estate, special projects, golf tournament, and strategic planning committees.
Jed has also served the Ashland community as a member of Ashland Rotary, and as a board member at Southern Oregon University, Ashland YMCA, and the Oregon Shakespeare Festival — to name just a few. In 2001, Jed was honored with the Distinguished Service Award for his dedicated service to the foundation and community.
Emeritus Board in Memoriam
C. David Fortmiller
Oscar “Bud” Silver
Edwin H. “Ed” Singmaster