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Due to the COVID crisis, we are all working from home. We are available by email, and some staff may be limited to email only or short phone calls. If you cannot reach us by phone, please email us.

Ed Gonzalez, Executive Director – 206-352-2050 ext 101; egonzalez@pprc.org

Michelle Gaither, Industrial Engineer – 206-352-2050 ext 107; mgaither@pprc.org

Ken Grimm, Industry Outreach Manager – 206-352-2050 ext 102; kgrimm@pprc.org

Carol Beard, Business Manager – 206-352-2050 ext 103; cbeard@pprc.org

Krysta Thornton, Communications Manager (Blog Manager) – 916-770-9204 (only available for brief conversations during COVID) kthornton@pprc.org

Brittney Wendell, Oregon Manager – 206-352-2050 ext 106; bwendell@pprc.org 

Botond Kovacs, Environmental Outreach Specialist – 206-352-2050 ext 110; bkovacs@pprc.org

Mikey Strauhal, Environmental Outreach Specialist – 206-352-2050 ext 105; mstrauhal@PPRC.org 

Ed Gilmore, Western States Alliance Trainer; egilmore@pprc.org

Clayton Brown, Western States Alliance Program Manager; cbrown@pprc.org 

Ed Gonzalez, Executive Director

Ed BioEd has 20 years of experience working in the environmental and health fields, managing programs/projects in the states of Texas, New Mexico, Nevada, California, and now Washington. Ed holds a BA in Political Science from the University of Texas at El Paso. While working as Program Manager at University of Texas at El Paso, Ed’s project work included: wetland restoration; providing access to potable water and health care for impoverished families in Juarez, Mexico; the introduction of green building concepts to local builders; and the management of the Southwest Pollution Prevention Resource Center.

Ed has also served as the Program Director of the Western Sustainability and Pollution Prevention Network (WSPPN), a cooperative alliance of pollution prevention (P2) programs throughout EPA Region 9, which is based out of the University of Nevada, Reno. His professional areas of interest include:

  • Green Building
  • Environmental Justice
  • Green Urban Planning
  • Organic Farming

Outside of work, Ed enjoys a variety of outdoor activities which include, fishing, camping, hiking, and cooking delicious southwestern dishes. He also enjoys listening to music and spending time with his family.

Michelle Gaither, Industrial Engineer

Michelle Gaither has workeMichelle Gaitherd in the field of environmental technical assistance for fifteen years, helping industry, government, and institutions reduce waste, pollution, toxics, and resource consumption.

Michelle has an M.S. in Environmental Science and a B.S. in industrial engineering, and career experience in both areas. The two disciplines complement each other in addressing environmental issues and solutions. Currently, at PPRC, projects include Integrating lean manufacturing and environmental methods for synergistic results, systematically evaluating safer chemical alternatives, and general research, writing, and sleuthing solutions for PPRC’s rapid response  inquiries around toxics and waste reduction.

Prior to PPRC, Michelle’s work experience included: management of research projects for the Clean Washington Center to develop applications for using recycled materials; Support of the labwide “Environmental Sustainability Project” for Battelle / Pacific Northwest National Labs at the Hanford site; and, manufacturing engineering at a successful electronics company.

Beyond PPRC, Michelle enjoys raising four children, playing and coaching sports, and volunteering with local school and environmental organizations.

Ken Grimm, Industry Outreach Manager

Ken GrimmKen joined PPRC after working extensively in the manufacturing sector. He draws on this expertise while working with various industry sectors, and the challenges they face while simultaneously becoming more competitive and “green.” Contact Ken for information on:

  • Technical and Regulatory Analysis
  • Business Drivers and Incentives
  • P2 Barriers and Opportunities in Manufacturing
  • P2 Results Measurement
  • Technology Diffusion
  • Environmental Management Systems

After leaving college, where his major emphasis was psychology (P2 is all about behavior change, right?!), Ken spent some time in the autobody trade before embarking on a seventeen-year journey in the metal fabrication industry. After stints as a lead painter and supervisor, Ken spent the last six years acquiring a hat collection which included ETC (Employee Transportation Coordinator), ISO 9000 Internal Auditor, Safety Director, Human Resources Manager, and Environmental Coordinator. He received an award of recognition from the mayor for his work as an ETC and has many years of no violation inspections from the Puget Sound Clean Air Agency to his credit, including one which called the facility a model company in the four-county area they regulate.

Outside of work Ken enjoys a variety of activities with friends and family, including fishing, camping, hiking, backpacking, cooking and motorcycle riding. He builds computers as a hobby and currently has 50+ systems in the homes of friends, relatives and neighbors.

Carol Beard, Business Manager

Carol Beard has many years of experience working in the accounting field and managing accounting departments.  Her full charge accounting knowledge working in different types of businesses including non-profits gives her a broad perspective on the needs of running an office. She loves to volunteer and has been a Girl Scout leader for 5 years.

Carol’s off time includes gardening, walking her dogs, travelling and time with husband, family and friends.

Krysta Thornton, Communications Manager                                                                

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is krysta-thornton-headshot.jpgKrysta Thornton has over 10 years of work experience in the intersection environmental health and communications. She has worked for diverse public health, environmental nonprofit organizations, and tribal nations around the country. She has a passion for transparent science communication that is accessible to everyone regardless of educational background. She has a strong background in content strategy, information architecture, environmental health, community organizing, and advocacy. In 2017, her team was the recipient of a HUD award – one of only four recipients across the country.

Krysta holds a Masters of Arts in Digital Media from the University of Washington, Seattle, and is working on a graduate certificate in editing from the University of Washington, Seattle. Krysta holds a B.S. in Environmental Studies/Conservation Biology from the University of California, Santa Cruz.

Brittney Wendell, Oregon Manager 

Brittney has several years of experience working with businesses and industries on pollution prevention, environmental compliance, and sustainability. With PPRC, Brittney manages the statewide EcoBiz Certification program in Oregon. She also leads pollution prevention outreach programs to assist industrial and commercial facilities in the reduction of toxics, waste, and resource consumption. Recent projects have focused on mercury and PFAS reductions.

Prior to PPRC, Brittney worked for an environmental consulting firm, training crews and monitoring public utilities projects for compliance with air, waste and stormwater regulations. She also conducted several seasons of bird surveys. She holds a B.S. in Conservation and Resource Studies from U.C. Berkeley.

Outside of PPRC, Brittney leads sustainability efforts at a gourmet mushroom company and sits on the Board of Directors for an environmental nonprofit. She enjoys birdwatching, drinking tea, and tending plants.

Mikey Strauhal, Environmental Outreach Specialist

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I first started out with environmental work studying Geography and Environmental Studies at the University of Oregon and working with Recycle Crew at Oregon Country Fair.  I learned there was a major need for passionate and educated personnel to work in the event industry upgrading waste management systems and raising the standard of the bare minimum.  I have worked in this industry for 9 years, designing and revising Solid Waste & Recycling (SWR) systems, documenting work, educating the public, and writing Standard Operating Procedures, audits, and reports. I helped these companies become more sustainable and better understand their event’s impacts on the environment while impacting their attendees in a positive, life changing manner.  I now focus on policy, regulation, and educational outreach so our communities better understand their local and global impacts. I want to help revise current policies for higher standards of our SWR operations to run more efficiently. In turn, this will help the public understand how to properly handle and sort their waste and recycling by being an active participant in an ever growing and changing industry with many issues that need immediate attention.

Botond Kovacs, Environmental Outreach SpecialistImage preview

Botond has experience supporting sustainability, outreach and environmental work. He is passionate about protecting natural areas, sustainably managing water resources, reducing pollution, and increasing community resiliency and equity. Botond recently supported watershed restoration and wastewater resiliency programs for the City of Portland and residential energy efficiency programs for TRC Companies, and has experience in public affairs from the City of Beaverton and Metro. He has an MS in Environmental Policy and Management from the University of Denver and a BS in Earth Science and Geography from Oregon State University, and he is working towards certificates in wetland delineation and river restoration at Portland State University. Outside of work he enjoys spending time at the coast and Columbia River, meeting up with friends, finding local events, cooking and exercising.

Clayton Brown, Western States Alliance Program Manager 

Clayton is an award-winning clean water industry professional with over 21 years of pollution control and water treatment experience and helped start the Regional Preferred Pumper Program.  He was the SC Manager at CWS for 30 years, and retired in October, 2017. His current role is board chair for the Pacific Northwest Source Control Training Association. He demonstrates innovative leadership, team building and coaching skills with the ability to motivate staff incorporating holistic and collaborative communication. Clayton has proven program and project management skills with demonstrated capacity to drive projects to successful completion. He is responsible for numerous process improvements resulting in significant resource and capital savings and is active in several industry associations.

Clayton has a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology from Portland State University, and a Masters in Business Administration from George Fox University. Clayton lives with his wife, Tricia, in Newberg, Oregon.  They enjoy spending time with their grandchildren at their little off-the-grid cabin near Lake Cushman, Washington.

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