Allen Rozema

Executive Director

Born and raised in the Skagit Valley, Allen brings over 19 years of experience to SPF in natural resource management, land use planning, and economic development at the federal, state, city and tribal government level. Graduating with a Masters of Science in resource management from Central Washington University, Allen has worked as a Hydrological Technician for the United States Forest Service, an Environmental Technician for the Washington State Department of Transportation and as a Natural Resources Planner and Community Development Coordinator for the Swinomish Indian Tribal Community.  Prior to joining SPF in 2006, Allen served as the Planning Director for the City of Sedro-Woolley.

Rachel Sorrels

Development & Administration Manager

Originally from eastern South Dakota, Rachel comes from a long line of Midwest farmers. She received BAs in Political Science and Theatre and Film studies from the University of Kansas. For over 15 years Rachel has participated in nonprofit work as either an employee, volunteer or board member. In 2012 she convinced her husband, cats and dog to uproot their lives and move to the West Coast. Landing in Seattle she attended Seattle University and received a Masters in Arts Leadership.

While living in Kansas she developed a passion for learning about food and where it comes from. Rachel and her husband enjoy visiting Farmers Markets wherever they travel, eating local and seasonally, meeting farmers and food producers, and trying new and regional foods.

Rachel is excited for the opportunity to combine her roots, work experience and passion as a member of the Skagitonians staff to help preserve farmland in the Valley for future generations.

Mariella Vandenkooy

Education & Outreach Coordinator

Raised in the Skagit Valley, Mariella has had the opportunity to be a part of the agricultural industry since she was 16 when she first started working for Hayton Farms over the summers and as she went through college at Western Oregon University. Mariella graduated with a B.S in Business Management and a minor in Economics, while being a four-year collegiate student-athlete playing volleyball. Mariella has a wide range of experience working not just for Hayton Farms, but the university’s sporting events, catering and part-time in the Office of Disability Services. She is incredibly excited to be a part of the Skagitonians staff and to put her education about leadership and management to use in her role as Education & Outreach Coordinator.

Teresa Bennett

Author of The Dirt

A 25-year career with her own advertising firm gave Teresa the opportunity to work with businesses from Tacoma to Bellingham, including several in Skagit Valley agriculture. As a Stanwood resident since 1988, Teresa quickly embraced the open-sky, open-land beauty of the Skagit Valley and immediately became a believer in farmland preservation. She is honored to tell the tale of the “Magic Skagit” through The Dirt and other writing assignments.