Gorge Grown Staff

Gorge Grown Food Network is managed and operated by our dedicated year round staff and our wonderful volunteers.


Yeli Boots

Mercado del Valle Ambassador 

Yelitza (Yeli) Boots, plays two roles in our community one as the Bilingual Outreach Specialist for the Hood River County Library and has now joined our team to help support Mercado del Valle. Yeli has a great love for her culture and ethnic background as her mother migrated from Mexico and began working in the cherry orchards in Yakima, WA.  Yeli has built her career working with and supporting children and families from diverse backgrounds for over 12 years in the Oregon region. She believes in the process of building communities and community partnerships. Yeli loves spending her free time with her 3 children, husband, family & friends.

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Hannah Brzozowski

Veggie Rx Program Support

Hannah Brzozowski has been a registered dietitian-nutritionist for 10 years. She is currently working with Gorge Grown to deliver nutrition curriculum and Veggie Rx support. She provides 1:1 nutrition counseling through her private practice and sees patients both adult and pediatric, with Mosaic Medical FQHC. Hannah has worked with a variety of patients with focus on diabetes, disordered eating, gut sensitivities, and general healthful eating. Hannah developed and directed the VeggieRx program in Bend Oregon for 4 years with High Desert Food & Farm Alliance. Outside of work, she spends most of her free time mountain biking, skiing, growing flowers, preserving and fermenting food and having dinner parties.

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Melissa DeCook

Hood River Farmers Market Assistant Manager

Melissa is a Master Food Preserver with a passion for good food and good community. Her interest for local food systems was sparked during her food preservation education. Witnessing collaboration between elder food preservers and local farmers to teach people about food sovereignty had a big impact on how she viewed her own connection to food. Melissa enjoys canning and toddling around the woods with her son. 

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Hannah Ladwig

Farmers Market Operations Director

Communications & Outreach Director

WSFMA Regional Lead- Columbia Gorge

Hannah joined Gorge Grown as the 2014-2015 a JVC Northwest AmeriCorps Volunteer and became part of the year round staff after her year of service. She was born and raised in Milwaukee, Wisconsin where she attended Marquette University and studied International Affairs, Peace Studies and Spanish. Her work with Gorge Grown is fueled by her passion for local agriculture, food systems, entrepreneurship, community, politics and social justice. Hannah is happiest when cooking for others, hiking, swimming and woodworking.

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Maya Lux

White Salmon Farmers Market Manager

Maya joins Gorge Grown as the White Salmon Farmers Market manager for the 2023 season. She is an aspiring flower farmer, avid gardener, local food enthusiast, and community- centered gal. She is driven by her desire to increase access to local food, bring communities together, teach and learn new practices, and leave a better world for the next generation. In her free time, Maya likes to learn to cook new things from scratch, hike, walk around her neighborhood, and garden with her husband and 2 daughters. 

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Joel Pelayo

Latino Outreach

Joel helps engage the Latino community in Gorge Grown programs including the Mercado del Valle (Odell Farmers Market). He serves of the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Committee of the Food Security Coalition. Joel has been a Community Health Worker for more than 20 years. He is co-founder of Raíces Cooperative Farm, and co-chair of the Community Advisory Committee of the regional Columbia Gorge Health Council. Joel co-facilitates trainings in diversity, equity and inclusion through The Next Door Inc.  


Sarah Sullivan

Executive Director

As former Executive Director of both Hawaii SEED and The Organic Seed Growers and Trade Association, Sarah has extensive experience in movement-building, organizational management and agricultural policy. She directed the award‐winning school-garden program at Abernethy Elementary in Portland, and trains teachers in garden-based education as an adjunct Professor at Lewis & Clark College. She is a trained Permaculture designer and has dabbled in plant breeding and seed saving. Sarah believes in the power and practice of collaborative leadership.