Message from Betty Patton

Betty PattonA Brief History of Time with RA

I joined RA within 3 weeks of moving to Oregon. Jeanne Roy reeled me in and I stayed. There were always opportunities to get involved in campaigns that really made a difference and I loved it.

I got to head up the campaign to ban PVC as a packaging material for consumer goods. That was my first success, so that fueled my desire to keep at it. I facilitated home eco audits. Those were discussions among about a dozen or fewer friends and neighbors on waste prevention in the home. I got to help put together some of the informational material for early Master Recycler classes and got to see graduates get heavily involved in their neighborhoods. I worked on an early Bottle Bill expansion ballot measure, but that one didn’t pass. The next attempt at expansion was in the legislature and thanks to the hard work of Katy Daily, a former RA board member, was successful. I helped her with presentations and talks with our elected representatives. Under the direction of another former board member Wayne Rifer, I put together multi-stakeholder discussions and planning meetings to address the massive amounts of electronics waste that was hitting the waste stream. We gave birth to Oregon’s current Oregon E-Cycles program.

I got to help put together opinion pieces for various proposals from Metro, City of Portland, and DEQ on recycling and waste prevention tactics. I represented RA on task forces at Metro and DEQ and helped make connections with other stakeholders.

One of the more enjoyable parts of my volunteer time was staffing educational booths and tables at various public events. At the zoo, at Earth Day events, at corporate green team presentations, I got to talk to a lot of Oregonians and work with brilliant volunteers.

After 1997, I took some years off from board participation to focus on my own business. But I was back in 2004. I always needed Recycling Advocates and could not stay away. The joy of working with so many dedicated board members was a highlight of my time. Thanks.

Now my volunteer efforts are focused elsewhere. I am a state council member of the Humane Society of the US. I am also their Oregon co-chair of the Wildlife Leadership Committee. We are working on wildlife protection, currently focusing on cougars, wolves and coyotes and the elimination of killing contests. My hands are full and I love it. Thank you, RA.