Besides our recent location change, OVGC Board changes are afoot. We are losing Marleen Luckman, our esteemed President, and her husband Frank Malle and welcoming a new board member, Cynthia Grier.
Marleen and Frank, who will be sorely missed not just by the OVGC, but the entire community, are moving out of state to be near family. Not to be too sad, we are looking forward to Cynthia coming onboard after being an active member since 2008.
Marleen is a certified Building Biology Environmental Inspector and has spent 30 years as an elementary teacher. She has had a broad impact on our community. An experienced public speaker on home environmental health issues, Marleen held the position of Green Operations Coordinator at the Ojai Unified School District funded through a grant to Food for Thought to develop green school policies, provide teacher support in environmental education, and guide the District through the National Green Ribbon School certification process. Marleen also has been serving as a Planning Commissioner for the City of Ojai and sitting on the Commission’s Complete Streets subcommittee.
“We have been making frequent trips to Arizona to visit family and this way we will be nearer for day to day support,” says Marleen. “We have fallen in love with the area and have found a really great house.” Marleen’s husband, Frank, has been an OVGC supporter and is also highly involved in the Ojai theatre community as well. Both are sure to be welcomed in their new Arizona home with the wealth of community experience they bring.
Cynthia, who has a strong background in home environmental issues, is the owner and founder of one of Ojai’s first green businesses, Ecologic Life, located at 111 W. Topa Topa St. “This is my first time on the OVGC Board,” says Cynthia. “ I have been active in the various transmutations of the committee once called Building & Construction, then called Built Environment, trying to do my part to work on anything that brings awareness around lowering our carbon footprint and preventing further ecological damage.”
Cynthia came into the environmental field for very personal reasons. Her health became compromised over 20 years ago when she moved into a new home filled with formaldehyde, PVC, and other toxins found in standard building products. This experience, coupled with her background in interior design, inspired her to broaden her knowledge of eco-friendly, sustainable products, launch the store and become more active in educating the public in safe nontoxic, earth-friendly materials.
Cynthia has worked hard to bring more environmentally friendly alternatives to the forefront, contributing to OVGC projects like our Green Home Tour and the Green Building & Beyond Forum in 2008, and is currently producing a series of monthly Eco building workshops with Jon Cotham.
Join with us in saying thank you and farewell to Marleen and Frank and a huge thank you to Cynthia for stepping up.