December 31, 2019

Reflections and Gratitude: Leaders Depart OCF

This year we say a fond farewell to two extraordinary OCF leaders, Kathleen Cornett and Johanna Theoresz. We asked them to share a few words on stewardship and community – lessons they’ve learned after many years of service in philanthropy.

Kathleen Cornett

Kathleen most recently served as vice president of grants and programs and joined OCF in 1987.

It has been my great joy to work in Oregon and with Oregonians. I love the state and her people who are working in their own ways to make life and community better. I have seen the impressive power of community, of people coming together around a shared goal. It has been my privilege to rub shoulders and sometimes provide some assistance to folks from every corner of the state working on projects as diverse as preserving a landscape, mentoring kids, patronizing the arts or building a health clinic. The Oregon spirit of community continues to this day and I believe it will go forward for decades to come, inspired by this special place. 

Johanna Thoeresz

Johanna served as chief development officer and joined OCF in 2013.

Generosity is born of a generous spirit and a desire to share one’s prosperity with others. I learned that generosity shows up in many guises and that the people most committed to an organization’s mission often give beyond what one might expect. I’ve had the good fortune of working with people every day who choose to use their resources for the benefit of others. Recognizing that it is a choice—not an obligation—allows me to celebrate and honor each donor and compels me to ensure the gift is used for its intended purpose. I am grateful to the many donors I’ve met over my 30-plus year career who have inspired me to expand my compassion for the earth and all living beings.