It’s Your Oregon Profile: Rob Nathan

I moved to Oregon in 2007 because I wanted to live, learn and love in a state I could be proud of. The place I came from was sunnier, warmer, but it was a place where my spirit was bogged down by overt discrimination laws, municipalities with no environmental stewardship ethic, massive urban sprawl, and some of least forward thinking water management practices in the country. It was a state with a lot of work to do that was not, and is not now, setting any trends for the future! In contrast, I believe Oregon is a leader in the sustainability movement and, as a global citizen, it is my duty to learn, participate and lead in Oregon’s effort to curb climate change, build a sustainable food system, eliminate toxic chemicals from our lives, take a stance on environmental justice, and much more. Soon enough, the Arizonas, West Virginias and Texases of our nation will look to places like Oregon for guidance once they have accepted their mistakes.

Oregon is a trend setter in the sustainability movement and people all over the country are looking to us to set best practices and inspire change. Thanks to OEC, many of the things I love about Oregon continue to get better. Since my time in Oregon, OEC has helped make our water cleaner by working to establish a state wide stewardship program that reduces pesticide contamination of our watersheds, designed an executive order signed by Governor Kitzhaber directing state agencies to purchase less toxic products, shifted our state’s public budget to fund more environmental protection programs, developed strong partnerships and initiatives that will help curb the climate crisis, and much more! This is why I am a member of OEC. My membership and volunteer support helps OEC keep Oregon ahead of the trends and thus helps shift our nation towards a sustainable future.

But this is not all; the one thing that makes me the most impressed with OEC is observing their internal and external commitment to social equity. The environmental movement has a reputation for falling short in this arena, and I have personally witnessed OEC’s recent commitments to shifting this reality and being a trendsetter within the movement itself! This means when OEC uses the tagline, it’s your Oregon, they really do mean all of us. This is the Oregon I want to be a part of, and this is why I am a member of OEC!

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