Who We Are

We are working to create an organizational structure that is non-hierarchical as possible - one that allows everyone to 'get in where they fit in' and work and play with us in a way that is meaningful to them.
The leadership of Cooperation Humboldt is made up of our core team, staff collective, and our board of directors.

Our core team members have met all of the following criteria:

  • Completion of a study group cohort
  • Active participation in at least one CH program/project
  • Willingness to self-identify as a CH leader (this can and will look a bit different for each of us)

Our current board of directors is composed of the following individuals:

David Cobb (he/him) is a "people's lawyer" who has sued corporate polluters, lobbied elected officials, run for political office himself, and been arrested for non-violent civil disobedience. He believes we must provoke—and win—a peaceful revolution if we are to survive.

David is the Co-Coordinator of the US Solidarity Economy Network, and serves on the Collaborative Design Council of Transition US. He is also on the Board of Advisors of the California Progressive Alliance, and is active with the California Public Banking Alliance.

When he isn’t working to restructure society, he enjoys exploring our local beaches and forests with Ruthi (his high school sweetheart) and Governor Peanut Butter (the best dog ever).

Click to view David's media on this site.

Tamara McFarland (she/her) grew up in Humboldt County and attended local schools from kindergarten through college. She and her husband are raising two children together in Eureka. Tamara is passionate about food equity, local resilience, animal rights, and environmental protection. She is a graduate of the Cascadia Leadership training program.

In 2016, she was the lead organizer for the Bernie Sanders campaign in Humboldt County. Following the 2016 elections, Tamara helped to co-found the North Coast People’s Alliance. After operating a small business for 14 years, Tamara has recently chosen to focus her time exclusively on social change work. She serves on Cooperation Humboldt’s Board of Directors as Treasurer, and also handles our bookkeeping and our Food Team.

Click to view Tamara's media on this site.

Argy (she/they) moved to Humboldt from Southern California to attend Humboldt State University in 2005 and graduated with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Environmental Science.  She has worked with Indigenous communities involved with Environmental Justice & Food Sovereignty, Redwood Roots CSA Farm, Food for People food bank, and Jefferson Community Center’s SEEDs after school gardening program. She has been a backup manager for North Coast Growers’ Associations Farmers’ Market since 2012 and is the Garden and Food Resource Coordinator with Open Door Community Health Center’s Health & Wellness Gardens.  Argy is currently on the North Coast Community Gardens Cooperative's Steering Committee, she helps with Food Not Bombs Eureka (Sundays 3pm at Clark & 3rd), and is working on bringing back the D.I.Y. Community Resource Center Tool Share with Cooperation Humboldt.

Click to view Argy's media on this site.

Michelle Vassel (she/her) serves as Tribal Administrator of the Wiyot Tribe (Chief Executive Officer). She is responsible for planning , managing, and directing the day-to-day operations of the Tribal government under the general supervision of the elected Tribal Council. She oversees all governmental programs and designs and implements tribal policies involving economic development, fiscal, social services, cultural, historic preservation and environmental programs.  Michelle also served as the Assistant Director at Northern California Indian Development Council, where she was responsible for planning, development, review and evaluation of community, and economic development service needs, resources and programs. She also served as Executive Assistant to the City Manager for the City of Fortuna, CA. 

Ron White (he/him) is the Humboldt Area Foundation’s Leadership Program Director, responsible for the development of the skills, knowledge and practice of civic and grassroots leadership. Currently, this work encompasses the Equity Alliance of the North Coast, which spreads the message of racial ; and coaching the organizing of Black and BIPOC justice spaces. He also staffs HAF’s Social Justice Donor Circle.

He is board chair of True North Organizing network, a Faith in Action affiliate in Humboldt and Del Norte Counties and adjacent tribal lands.  Faith in Action National Network (formerly PICO) puts race, the power of people, and social justice interfaith values, at the center of its community organizing model.

Ron has four decades of experience in social change philanthropy where he’s held positions at every level in the field of philanthropy from volunteer, to program officer to foundation executive director and trustee. Ron brings a strong knowledge of community organizing and community based economic development to every aspect of his professional work.

Click to view Ron's media on this site.

Cooperation Humboldt is also fortunate to have the following individuals on staff:

Ruthi Engelke (she/her) is the Education and Communication Coordinator  for Cooperation Humboldt. Ruthi is a retired public school teacher who has taught Theater, English, and Writing/Composition to students at the high school and college levels. She has a Bachelor of Arts in Theater from the University of Texas and a Masters of Arts in Literature from the University of Houston-Clear Lake.

Ruthi also serves on the Board of Directors for Redwood Curtain Theater, and when she is not creating beautiful trouble she can often be found exploring the beaches and forests of the North Coast, digging in her organic garden, or creating images on the stage.

Click to view Ruthi's media on this site.

Morgan (He/They) works as a Cooperative Developer in the Worker Owned Humboldt project, doing business advising through Cooperation Humboldt's collaboration with the North Coast SBDC. He is also involved with organizational development for Cooperation Humboldt and is part of creating the new structures, policies, and processes that will allow Cooperation Humboldt to grow and develop. He is a Theater Teacher by Education; a Project Manager by Uninhibited Habit; a Father by Day; a Swede by Birth; a Nerdy, Queer, Anarchist by Nature; and a Warrior of Love by Choice. Four decades on this earth have taught him to Live life to the fullest with Love and Respect - and do not let Fear control you. Or in other words plan for the Worst - its going to happen - live for the Best.

Tobin McKee (they/them) is grant writer and Program Administrator at Cooperation Humboldt. Tobin is a founding member of Worker Owned Humboldt,  the Community Health Worker Collaborative,  the Cooperative Cannabis Economy Group,  and the Jardin Santuario community garden with Centro del Pueblo. Tobin is also the Co-Director at Middleway Network, a project of the Ink People Center for the Arts, fostering the development of free wellness education and services for underserved populations.

Click to view Tobin's media on this site.

Sabrina Miller (she/her) has been working for the Redwood Community Action Agency’s Youth Service Bureau for several years and has recently taken a position at the Raven Project. She has a wealth of experience and knowledge when it comes to engaging with and caring for people experiencing homelessness, Substance Use Disorder, and mental illness. She is trauma informed and sensitive to the needs of vulnerable populations. Sabrina is on staff at Cooperation Humboldt as a member of the Community Health Worker Collaborative Working Group and a program co-lead on the Disaster Response and Resilience Team. She has established strong relationships with the organizations within the CHW Collaborative and the communities they serve.

Click to view Sabrina's media on this site.

Oscar Mogollon (he/him) works with our Community Health Worker Collaborative and Disaster Response and Community Resilience team. He is also an activity coordinator at Adult Day Health Care of Mad River. He has strong communication skills, and a diverse understanding of business and Psychological theory. He graduated from HSU in 2019 with a BA in Psychology and minors in Communication and Business administration. He is an open-minded individual, appropriately considering intersectionality within organizational relationships and community partners.

Click to view Oscar's media on this site.

Our Core Team rocks! Below are a few of our anchors:

Julie Artemov (she/her/hers) is an artist studying fine art and relational aesthetics at Humboldt State University. She seeks to bring power back to the community of practicing artists and advocate for their needs. She hopes to do this by promoting a general sense of creativity in her community and shifting the perspective of who an artist is. With a background in photography, graphic design, and illustration, Julie uses her skills and experience to visually translate ideas in different project areas at Cooperation Humboldt.

Instagram: @shemovesart , website: artremedytheory.com

Rev. Molly Cate is a humanitarian teacher, speaker, writer and counselor. She facilitates study groups for Cooperation Humboldt and teaches courses championing the resilience of humanity in the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute program through Humboldt State University. She is spiritual leader of Unity of the Redwoods in Eureka, California. Molly has a Master’s degree in Consciousness Studies from Holmes Institute in Santa Rosa and one in Sociology from the University of California, Davis. She is a member of the Boards of Directors of the League of Women Voters of Humboldt County and of Access Humboldt and has been a member of the Humboldt Interfaith Fellowship since 2017. Molly also runs her own editing/ proofreading business, Living Proof Editorial Services. Her website is www.thewisdombridge.com. Molly is an Anchor on the Education Team.

Cara Cordoni (she/her/hers) transplanted herself and her two sons from San Francisco to Eureka in 2016. She is a graduate of the University of Virginia and received her coaching certification from The Coaches Training Institute in 2011. She works as a Leadership and Relationship Coach supporting values-based entrepreneurs, radical start-up founders, eccentrics, revolutionaries, and courageous risk-takers: people who are determined to be their best selves - to make their own way and transform themselves and the world for the better. Cara is also an entrepreneur and writer. She is an anchor on the Cannabis Cooperative Economics Group, a project of Worker Owned Humboldt, formed specifically to support the development of a bioregional cannabis cooperative economy.

Hayley Connors-Keith (she/her/hers) has a passion to foster awareness of the daily actions people can take to create a healthier and just world. She feels most animated when she is advocating for climate justice, teaching waste reduction, doing community outreach, and adventuring in the wondrous outdoors. Hayley holds a BA in Communication and a minor in Studio Art from Humboldt State University. At Cooperation Humboldt Hayley is on the Arts and Cultural team and has been a part of the planning committee for ADC. She is delighted to have helped create ADC’s first virtual art exhibit to coexist with the event. Hayley is also on the Steering Committee for 350 Humboldt and acts as the liaison between both groups.

Desiree Davenport (she, her) is a founding member of Cooperation Humboldt and primarily works on the Housing Program. She is part of the Eco-village Founders Circle and is working to develop several cooperative housing projects throughout the County. Desiree works full time as an Environmental Scientist for the State of California and has knowledge of local flora and fauna, ecological restoration techniques and local permitting requirements. Desiree also worked on several local campaigns and works with the North Coast People’s Alliance, Green Party of Humboldt County, the Green Eco-Socialist Network. In her free time, Desiree practices herbalism, permaculture gardening, and has extensive knowledge about the uses of local native plants and mushrooms.

Lark Doolan (he/him) immigrated to unceded Wiyot territory from the aboriginal homeland of the Muwekma Ohlone. Lark serves as the director of the nonprofit, Queer Humboldt, supports the transgender health program at Open Door Community Health Centers, and serves as the superintendent of Peninsula Union School District. Lark is passionate about building inclusive communities where diversity is valued.

Learn more about Queer Humboldt's intersectional liberation approach at: www.QueerHumboldt.org

Solomon Everta (he) is a multimedia artist living in the Raspberry House (built in 1898) in Jaroujiji (Eureka, California) with his two sons, a dog, and loving friends nearby.

Working in theater, historical research, woodblock prints, record-keeping, story creation, baked goods, and interview his work often defies categorization while crossing disciplines.

Solomon serves as Imaginal Facilitator at The Land Office of the Imaginal Services Bureaux and Radical Librarian for Cooperation Humboldt.

Kate Lancaster (she/her) recently retired as an associate professor from Humboldt State University, School of Business where she taught sustainable business and accounting at the undergraduate and graduate level.  Her BS, MS and PhD are in accounting, with an emphasis on environmental and social issues.  She worked with students on numerous projects that helped businesses and organizations explore and measure their sustainability (environmental, social, and economic) footprint. Kate is a Worker Owned Cooperative Business Advisor for Cooperation Humboldt and the North Coast Small Business Development Center, facilitates a CH Study Group, serves on the board for Zero Waste Humboldt, and teaches part-time at HSU.  She was actively involved in numerous HSU-related sustainability endeavors and served as a board member for the North Coast Cooperative. Kate is a small-scale permaculture gardener and herbalist, an avid and eclectic reader, and a life-long learner who enjoys long walks with her dogs in the Community Forest. An Arcata resident, Kate and her husband incorporate permaculture principles as stewards of their urban farm.  They share their life with two career-changed dogs from Guide Dogs of America, nearly 30 chickens and numerous beehives.

Sarah Peters Gonzalez is a person who loves moving, comedy, trees, neurodiversity, and her family. She has worked as a theatre-maker, administrator, and teacher. Right now she serves as a Regional Coach for Turnaround Arts: CA and as Teaching Artist with the Create Humboldt project. Before, Sarah experienced working as an instructor at Humboldt State University and performing and directing at theatres including The Arcata Playhouse, Dell’Arte, Well Arts Institute (OR), Milagro Theatre (OR), Kaiser Permanente’s Educational Theatre Program (Los Angeles), and Bond Street Theater (New York/India). She’s in the process of co-founding a new organization called OpenArt. Sarah is on the Art & Culture Team.

Holly Hilgenberg (she,her) is an artist, writer and lover of nature, plants, herbalism, vintage clothing, print publications and thrifting. Being part of Cooperation Humboldt has been her favorite way to combine social change work, creativity and community building since she moved to Humboldt from Minneapolis 3 years ago.

Holly is active on both the Art & Culture and Food Teams.

Kylie Maxfield (She/Her/Hers) is a multimedia artist who works with ceramics, illustration, jewelry & photography mediums. She is passionate about the arts, especially as a tool for healing, and making it accessible for everyone. Kylie is currently finishing up her last year at Humboldt State University studying to get her Bachelor of Fine Arts. She is a part of the Arts & Culture team & her goals after she graduates lies within the works of Cooperation Humboldt.

Kimiko McNeill moved to Manila 12 years ago and completely fell in love with Humboldt. Kimiko identifies as a healer and caregiver, and she works as an occupational therapist serving individuals with physical disabilities. She sees her life’s purpose as serving others. She is committed to creating a haven of progressive values in Humboldt to protect the natural beauty of Humboldt and to support all of the unique populations that reside here. Kimiko identifies as multicultural, and this perspective makes her devoted to improving equity and inclusion for all people. Kimiko is an anchor on the food team, and she is elated to be a part of Cooperation Humboldt! Kimiko’s cannot wait to expand food sovereignty and access in Humboldt.

Amy Moffat is an administrator at Humboldt State University where she uses her skills in qualitative and quantitative methods and analysis to show whether programs do what they intended to do. She is also a mother, partner, artist, scholar, adventurer, science fiction enthusiast, and sister to all. Before moving to Humboldt County in 2019, Amy worked as a project director, evaluator, and independent consultant for community health and development initiatives, focusing on cultural understanding to facilitate social systems change. Her dissertation research was on women’s work, paid and unpaid emotional labor, and birth doulas. Amy holds a PhD in the social sciences (UC Merced), a MA in applied anthropology (University of Maryland), and a BA in anthropology, and economics and management (Beloit College). Amy is an Anchor on the Education Team.

Stephen Nachtigall (he, him, his) is a visual artist from Calgary, Canada working in Arcata, California and currently serves as Assistant Professor of Digital Media at Humboldt State University. He has exhibited throughout Canada, the United States, Scotland and Germany. He received a BFA in sculpture from the Alberta University of the Arts and an MFA in studio art from the University of Oregon. His artwork considers the ways human and non-human relationships occur through a mediated perspective. Utilizing mixed and multidisciplinary mediums which include hand-crafted and digital approaches, he also explores found, sourced, remixed or appropriated materials in an effort to explore the tenuous connections manifesting our lived experience. Stephen is active on the Art & Culture team. Check out his artwork: http://stephennachtigall.com/

Zuzka Sabata (she/her/hers) is a performer, teacher, and community organizer who has developed and led community-based projects in Humboldt County for 15 years. Currently she is partnering with filmmaker Michelle Hernandez (Wiyot) as Co-Artistic Directors of The Bartow Project, a multi-year partnership between Dell'Arte International and the Wiyot Tribe to create 4 short films and a radio program about artist Rick Bartow. She lives in Eureka, Ca. and Brno, Czech Republic. Zuzka is an anchor on the Art & Culture team.

Joann Taijala (she/her/hers) is the Founder & Executive Director of Home Grown, a Humboldt County Host Home program. Home Grown is a nonprofit that provides housing and supportive services to young adults experiencing housing instability. Joann received her Master’s Degree in Nonprofit Management from Hamline University in St. Paul, MN and her Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology from Humboldt State University. Joann spent 6 years living, volunteering, and working at a student family housing cooperative in Minneapolis, MN. She enjoyed the experience so much that she’s working with Cooperation Humboldt to try to bring affordable, cooperative housing options to Humboldt County.

Katy Warner is a digital printer, print maker and collage artist. She grew up in Sacramento, CA and decided to become an artist after receiving a hand-me-down laptop for her 14th birthday. She receiving her BFA from California College of the Arts in 2009 and her MFA from Mills College in 2013, and now works as a Cooperator at the Sanctuary in Arcata, CA. Katy is an Anchor on the Ecovillage Founders Circle.

Issac West is a Humboldt local passionate about the intersection between housing, business and food. Currently in the process of forming a worker owned, bicycle powered compost collection service (Full Cycle Compost) and a member of the ecovillage founders circle. He attends HSU studying land degradation in the context of establishing equitable food and climate security in rural areas. When he's not fearing the desertification apocalypse he is out shredding mountain bikes in the redwoods.