Our team is made up of a group of passionate and talented gardeners, business specialists and more. Together we work to develop and carry out Huerto de la Familia’s programs and services for Latino families in need throughout the Eugene-Springfield area.

Executive Director: Marissa Zarate graduated from the University of Oregon School of Law with a focus on human rights work and holds a B.A. in Peace Studies from Chapman University. She has extensive nonprofit experience including legal work, nonprofit management, fundraising, community organizing, nonprofit incorporation and event planning. The daughter of a Costa Rican immigrant mother and Mexican- American father she began her professional career working on environmental justice issues within the Latino community in Southeast Los Angeles. Prior to joining Huerto de la Familia, Marissa worked as an attorney in the Columbia Gorge practicing immigration law and landlord-tenant law protecting tenant rights. Marissa enjoys reading books and exploring the Northwest outdoors with her trusty canine, Gracie. Contact Marissa at [email protected]

Cambios Program Manager: Alexandra Perez Urbina is from Caracas, Venezuela and grew up with one foot in Venezuela and the other in the US. In 2009, she received a diploma in Culinary Arts from the Restaurant School at Walnut Hill College in Philadelphia, PA and in 2014, she received a Permaculture Design Certificate from Andrew Faust in Brooklyn, NY. Currently, she is enrolled at PSU and is studying Social Work. Alex enjoys the fine arts, food, nature, and all creatures, especially her kitty, Estrella. Contact Alexandra at [email protected]

Organic Garden Program Manager: Gatlin Fasone-Youngblood graduated with a B.A., emphasis in Cultural and Community Studies, from The Evergreen State College. Much of her education was spent outside of the classroom, through internships with community partners. She interned with nonprofits which serve Latinx and immigrant communities in Washington State and Oregon, including an internship with Huerto. Gatlin is excited to contribute to more equitable access to healthy produce and to promote food sovereignty in our community. Her passion for sustainable agriculture stems from a childhood largely spent outdoors, often in her mother’s community garden plot. In her spare time, Gatlin enjoys swimming, forest walks with her dog, Apple, and going on adventures with her family. Contact Gatlin at [email protected]

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Huerto de la Familia’s Board of Directors is made up of community leaders that bring a variety of assets to the organization. The Board dedicates time and energy to governance, fundraising, program innovation and more.

President: Tannya Devorak is originally from Mexico. She joined Huerto de la Familia’s Cambios Business Class in 2019 to start an event planning business. Tannya was so inspired by her own journey in the Cambios Business Class that she decided to join Huerto de la Familia’s board of directors to help ensure the class continues to successfully serve Latino families. She is an active member of Latino Professionals Connect, and she cares deeply about helping Latino families in Lane County to build community.

Treasurer: Christina Bentrup is a lifelong gardener. She works for Eugene Parks and Open Space as a volunteer coordinator and native plant gardener. Previously she was the Garden Director for the Nashville Food Project, growing food and providing technical gardening assistance to community members in Tennessee. She has labored in, taught at, and enjoyed gardens, farms, and forests around the world. Christina believes that gardens have a power to weave communities together with the ecosystems they depend on and can teach us about the resiliency, interdependence, and diversity necessary for communities to thrive.

Secretary: Justin Sandoval is a masters student in the Planning, Public Policy and Management Masters Program at the University of Oregon. He also works as the Office Manager at the University of Oregon’s Outdoor Program. Previously he worked as the Program Director for the Rural Education Institute of Mexico in San Miguel de Allende.  Prior to that position he worked as the Multicultural Outreach Liaison and Bilingual Administrative Assistant at Food for Lane County.

Member-at-Large and Board Member: Roberto Peralta originally from Mexico, has over 15 years of experience working as a business consultant in Mexico, Peru, China, and the United States. As a business consultant, he focuses on strategic planning, business analysis, IT and commercialization. Roberto and his wife Catalina also serve as community leaders in Huerto de la Familia’s Organic Garden Program, and have been a part of the garden program for seven years.

Member-at-Large and Board Member: Catalina Angeles is originally from Mexico and she participates in Huerto de la Familia’s Organic Garden Program with her family in Springfield. She has worked as a professional business consultant for many years in many countries. She has extensive experience working in project management, team building and leadership skills in the context of business development. She speaks French in addition to both Spanish and English. She has a passion for cooking healthy, traditional Mexican cuisine.

Member-at-Large and Board Member: George Bosch is originally from Cuba. He has 20 years of experience in the title and escrow field closing commercial and residential sale and refinance transactions. In addition, he works as a business consultant and teaches many classes in the community regarding home buying, business formation, and business plans. He teaches Spanish for fun. He volunteers with Huerto de la Familia’s Cambios Program by serving as an advisor and presenting on business formation to the Cambios Business Class.

Student Board Member: Shayna Higashi is originally from Hawai`i. She is currently working on a Master of Nonprofit Management degree at the University of Oregon. Shayna is serving on Huerto de la Familia’s board of directors as part of a board management class. She has over eight years of experience in the nonprofit sector, and currently works as a Child Development Center Manager for the children’s program at Willamette Family Inc. Shayna is passionate about strengthening the family unit and she is a strong believer of equity and inclusion.