Oak Grove Community Council 2023 Board of Directors
Valerie Chapman joined the OGCC as Vice Chair in 2019. She lives one block from the Trolley Trail in the Park Avenue neighborhood with her husband, Gwion Miller, and their three chickens.
Valerie grew up in southeast Portland
and first moved to the Oak Grove area in 1973. After some time living in Eastern Oregon and Washington, she moved back to Oak Grove in 1981. Their six children attended several of the North Clackamas schools: North Oak Grove, Milwaukie Jr. HS, Rowe Jr. HS, and Milwaukie HS (as well as St. John the Baptist and LaSalle). Valerie and Gwion have seven grandchildren, several of whom attend school in the district.
Valerie served on TriMet’s Citizen Advisory Committee for the Orange Line, which became her "major mode of transportation" after it opened in 2015. She serves as Chair of the Park Avenue Community Advisory Committee and has been a representative to MAP-IT.
Prior to the COVID-19 shut down, she became involved in discussions with other community members about the way the unincorporated Oak Grove area is governed. That group became the Oak Lodge Governance Project.
Valerie is a "mostly retired" minister and professor. She still facilitates a variety of classes and study groups online via Zoom and writes a weekly reflection. She enjoys gardening, playing with her grandchildren and exploring the area on public transit or on foot (except when there is a pandemic). Valerie and Gwion are avid movie watchers, like to cook, host parties, read, travel by train and enjoy each other’s company.
Jane Civiletti and her family moved to Fair Oaks Avenue more than 30 years ago. She has been attending Oak Grove Community Council meetings since the early 90’s and has served as treasurer for the council since 2019.
Jane’s other community activities include membership in Oak Lodge Community Emergency Response Team (CERT), volunteering with Rivers East Village, and as a steering committee member of the Oak Lodge Governance Project.
Since retiring after a 40-year career in public health laboratory services, Jane has enjoyed more time to engage in caring for the cultivation of plantings at their residence. And her husband’s "farm" out back keeps her rather busy in the kitchen.
Junior High (now the Portland Waldorf school), and Rex Putnam High School. His parents and grandparents still live in the area. A resident since 1984, he has called the River Forest neighborhood home since 2014.
Joseph is a current volunteer with the North Clackamas Watersheds Council board, the Clackamas County Pedestrian-Bikeway Advisory Committee and is a Milwaukie Planning Commissioner. He has volunteered with the North Clackamas Watersheds Council board (chair 2017-21), the Oak Grove-Lake Oswego Bicycle/Pedestrian Bridge Committee, and the McLoughlin Area Plan Implementation Team (vice chair,
Having been present for several growth and disinvestment cycles in the Oak Grove area over five decades, Joseph is committed to stabilizing the local economy and housing markets to benefit the whole community. His passion is the preservation and restoration of functional ecological systems across all landscapes, and in particular the accommodation of wilderness and wildlife habitat in urban communities.
Joseph hopes for the Community Council to be a trusted resource in the community for governmental affairs and public policy advocacy, and to continually engage more broadly with the communities within its boundaries.
Board Member at Large
Joseph Edge has been a land-use and transportation policy activist for more than 25 years. He is employed as a software engineer. He attended the old Oak Grove Elementary (now New Urban High School), Milwaukie
Mark Elliott joined the OGCC Board in February 2021 as a general board member. Mark and his husband Kirk have been residents of Oak Grove since moving to the area from Northeast Portland in November 2017.
Mark and Kirk live in the Concord School area and enjoy being close to the school and the Trolley Trail. They can be seen walking their goldendoodle Rupert, on the Trolley Trail to Stringfield Family Park and downtown Oak Grove for some good coffee and conversation. Mark and Kirk enjoy being grandparents to two granddaughters and a grandson.
Mark is a retired architect of 43 years, previously a Project Manger for ZGF Architects in Portland. His career was devoted to design and construction projects in the healthcare industry here in the Portland/Vancouver area and throughout the United States.
Mark was a Task Force member for the Oak Lodge and Gladstone Community Project, engaged in the Concord School redevelopment and new Oak Lodge Library and Community Center. Mark was elected to a 4-year term on the District Advisory Board for the North Clackamas Parks and Recreation District in July 2023 and served as chair of the Oak Grove Festival Organizing Committee for 2022 and 2023, he's a member of the Milwaukie Community Center Advisory Board and served as a member of the Oak Lodge Water Services Budget Committee for 2022 and 2023. Mark enjoys gardening, hiking and traveling and hopes to contribute to the health and wellbeing of our community through positive and solution-oriented engagement with local community initiatives and citizens.
Rich Nepon was appointed Board Member at Large of the OGCC in 2020 and elected in 2021. He lives "a few blocks due south of Freddie’s," between Oatfield and 99E with his wife, Sandra,
two of their adult kids and three dogs.
Rich and Sandra moved to Oak Grove after 10 years in Naples, FL, preceded by "a lifetime" in Pennsylvania and New Jersey. Rich held public office beginning in 1978 on his local NJ zoning board. Later he was elected to the board of the third-largest school district in Pennsylvania. "Luckily, I lost my run for Mayor," Rich said (quoting his wife).
Rich has long been active in national and regional organizations. He was a volunteer firefighter for 30 years and, along with his wife, home-schooled their four children.
Locally, Rich is a member of the Clackamas Emergency Response Team (CERT) and the Friends of the Oak Lodge Public Library (FOLPL) board. He has been an active participant in the Concord Property and Oak Lodge Library Planning Task Force meetings. He regularly attends CPO summit meetings, Fire District meetings and Clackamas County Commission meetings.
Rich is passionate about live theater, having owned and operated a live traveling theater company serving senior living facilities. He has owned two camera and bookstores, worked for a municipality as the special operations manager and worked for the federal government in adult education.
Rich is interested in making sure the citizens of Oak Grove have a voice in their future. He hopes to see the Oak Grove Community Council become more community-oriented without losing its quasi-governmental focus.
Rich looks forward to a time when in-person OGCC meetings can resume so he can meet everyone in person.