Close to half the seven-member Douglas County Parks Advisory Board are now women, with the appointment of Reedsport’s Jody Morrow on Wednesday.
The Douglas County Board of Commissioners unanimously approved Morrow’s appointment. Morrow replaces former coastal representative Richard Patten, who stepped down last year. Joe Coyne of Winchester Bay also applied for the position.
Commissioner Chris Boice recommended Morrow’s selection. He cited her involvement with the Reedsport/Winchester Bay Chamber of Commerce and the annual Dunefest event at the coast. Boice said Morrow will bring to the parks board knowledge of the importance of the parks system to economic development at the coast.
Her selection was approved unanimously by the commissioners.
Commissioner Tim Freeman said over the last three years the county has diversified the Parks Advisory Board, which was previously made up entirely of older men from Roseburg. Now, he said, the seven-member board has three women, one person of color and members from around the county. Freeman said the changes were made in response to concerns raised about the board’s membership.
“We took that concern very seriously and have done that work and feel very good about the board that we have there and how it can reflect a diverse opinion for the community and the needs of the parks,” Freeman said.
The commissioners appointed Roseburg residents Jerry Chartier and Robert Johnson to the board in January. About a year ago, two women, Holda Crocker of Oakland and Christine Goodwin of Myrtle Creek, joined the board, changing what had been an all-male board for years.