Oregon Association of Nurseries debuts new Director

Oregon Association of Nurseries Announces New Executive Director/CEO
— Jeff Stone to take the helm of the nursery industry advocacy group

[Wilsonville, Ore., Sept. 20, 2010] – Today the Oregon Association of Nurseries announced that Jeff Stone will be the new Executive Director/CEO of the association.

Stone has served as the organization’s Director of Government Relations since 2005. During that time he delivered landmark estate tax reform, metal theft legislation, hoop house tax protection, and land use changes that positively affected the industry. He also created and co-chaired the Coalition for a Working Oregon, a group that brought business representatives together to shape the immigration debate in Oregon and Washington, DC.

“It would be difficult to find anyone that will work harder for the OAN than Jeff Stone,” said Kristin VanHoose, chair of the search committee and incoming president of the organization.

His previous position was Director of Public Relations for Cappelli-Miles [spring], a brand alignment and communications firm in Portland, Ore. Prior to that, he served for seven years as Chief of Staff/Senior Policy Advisor for Metro Regional Government in Portland and staff assistant for US Senator Bob Packwood for eight years.

“Jeff has been a very good advocate for our industry,” said Tom Fessler of Woodburn Nursery and Azaleas, who served on the search committee. “He knows the people to make things happen, and I know he will give us his best in the new position.”

“Jeff will build strong coalitions and programs that will help our members,” said Jerry Simnitt of Simnitt Nursery, who heads the OAN Government Relations Committee.

In his new role, Stone will manage and direct activities of the Association. He is responsible for proposing an agenda of issues to receive the attention and support of the Association. He will also manage and direct a team of five senior staff who provide leadership and support for programs and activities in the areas of marketing, government relations, events and education, communications and publications, and finance and administration.

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The Oregon Association of Nurseries, based in Wilsonville, represents more than 1,200 wholesale growers, retailers, landscapers and suppliers. Oregon’s ornamental horticulture industry is among the state’s largest agricultural commodities, with annual sales of $820 million. More than 75 percent of the nursery plants grown in Oregon are shipped out of state. For information, visit www.oan.org or call (503) 682-5089.

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