Joan Qazi

Board Member

Joan once wrote her six-word memoir as ‘wants to tread lightly, travel far’.  She is a Geographer (read explorer), specializing in sustainable food systems and climate justice.  Joan earned her PhD from the University of Washington with a dissertation on women’s work in NCW’s apple industry and has been teaching at Wenatchee Valley College for 23 years.  Over the last year, she developed a new Introduction to Sustainability course and trained with Al Gore to become a Climate Reality Leader.  “Above all, I am a mother of two biological sons and an adopted daughter, so I want to meet our needs without compromising the ability of future generations to meet theirs!”

Betsy Dudash

Board President

Betsy, a recent transplant from the Midwest, is a self-employed landscape horticulturist and designer.  She grew up gardening, camping, hiking, and canoeing. “My parents taught us to enjoy and appreciate nature. My earliest memories are of being in the veggie garden with my mom. My dad taught me how to canoe as well as compost, prune, and dig a Christmas tree. I still remember our Saturday morning trips to the recycling center.” Betsy grew up in northeast Ohio but has also lived in central Indiana, northern Virginia, The Netherlands, and upstate New York. She took her first horticulture course while living in Ithaca, New York, but didn’t earn her degree from Purdue University till 10 years later. For Betsy, being an environmental steward is about the small choices we make every day, and being a part of Sustainable Wenatchee means the chance to share her knowledge and enthusiasm. 

Jenny Montgomery

Board Secretary

Jenny has called the Wenatchee Valley home for approximately 10 years. She moved here after college in her early 20s and immediately felt at home but did not fully dive into the community until she hit 30. “Something slowly started to change in me. I had ping after ping to get involved and finally I could not ignore it. I stopped being shy and discounting myself and volunteered. As that was happening, Sustainable Wenatchee posted that they were looking for advocates to join their adventure. As soon as I saw the post, I knew this was the community group I had been looking for. I became Sustainable Wenatchee’s first ambassador. I have a busy and demanding work schedule so an ambassador role allowed me to tiptoe into action, share, learn a lot and volunteer on my own time. This year I decided to expand my commitment and join the board of directors. Although this is a new non-profit, I see so much good in Sustainable Wenatchee’s community reach and relatable approach to environmental issues. I hope I can fill a practical and fresh space on the board and maybe even influence a few others to get involved. Sustainability truly allows me to expand my creativity and that’s something I want to share. It opens my mind and challenges me to build things, grow my food and buy less. As an ambassador and a board member I am committed to share  projects, my efforts to limit waste in my home, tidbits of my plant based diet, a window into volunteer work and a continued support to our tread lightly businesses. If we ease into change and eliminate fear, we can make a difference together. Every little bit counts." Jenny currently works as the Communications Provisioning Department & Field Manager at LocalTel. 


Lauren Kendall

Board Member

Lauren grew up in the Chicago-land area, earned her degrees in Biology and Women’s Studies from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and returned home for medical school at the University of Illinois.  She and her partner, Nick, moved to New Orleans, Louisiana for residency training before she recognized her true desire to be surrounded by nature and others who appreciate it. Thankfully, she chanced upon a virtual pamphlet about Wenatchee in 2016, finally moving here that year and loving it ever since.  She now works as a family physician at Columbia Valley Community Health.

Lauren enjoys dancing, reading, music, travelling, learning how to hobby farm, and appreciating what Mother Nature has to teach us. She also enjoys her cat, 3 dogs, and a good cheese. 


Lauren is honored to be a part of the Sustainable Wenatchee board.  She is passionate about “the little changes” that help our environment including decreasing single-use bags, containers and plasticware, buying green or secondhand clothing, books and other goods, and finding sustainable personal care products.  These ideas all seem overwhelming at first, but they really are achievable! She can’t wait to learn and share more ideas with our wonderful community.

Daniel Zavala

Board Member

Daniel Zavala earned his bachelor’s degree in Clinical Physiology from Central Washington University in 2012 and has been living in the Wenatchee Valley ever since. Danny works at Wenatchee Valley College (WVC) as the Student Recreation Center & Motor Pool Manager, WVC Adjunct Instructor, and is Co-Founder of Butte Brand, a Chelan based company recognized for giving back towards land-and-water based non-profits. Danny’s fire is fueled by hiking throughout Washington’s back country, working with people and connecting communities, and most importantly working on projects that are making a positive global impact.


Danny joins the board of directors because he believes in the organization's mission to promote a culture of environmental stewardship and social sustainability. He believes today more than ever before, we, as a society, need to educate and inspire community members about the importance of becoming more socially, economically, and environmentally sustainable to meet the needs of future generations to come.

Elisa Lopez

Board Treasurer

Elisa was born and raised in the Wenatchee area surrounded by apple and cherry orchards. Her favorite parts in Wenatchee have always been natural spaces such as trails, rivers, and parks. This sparked an interested in the environment for her and a sense of responsibility for it. 


She attended Washington State University and earned her degree in Zoology. Since then, Elisa has connected with many environmentally-focused organizations and works with Team Naturaleza and the Wenatchee River Institute. She's thankful to be able to share her passion for the outdoors with youth and bilingual families. Her hope is that her work will inspire the people she works with to also develop a sense of responsibility for the environment. 


Elisa is passionate about sustainability and aims to increase the number of reusable materials in her home. Her biggest struggle with sustainability has been composting, but she hasn't given up and is looking forward to successfully composting one day. 

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Sustainable Wenatchee is a 501(c)3 non-profit that promotes a culture of environmental stewardship and social sustainability in the Wenatchee Valley.

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© 2020 by Sustainable Wenatchee

Saddle Rock photo by Frank Cone