971.701.6699  info@oregonwatersheds.org

Shawn Morford, Ph.D.

Executive Director

  • phone: 971-701-6699
  • Email

Shawn is a seasoned natural resource and rural development leader with over 35 years of  experience involving collaborations and partnerships, organizational capacity-building, and designing and delivering educational programs with conservation non-profits, tribal, Oregon Department of Forestry, OSU Extension, and rural development in Oregon on both sides of the Cascades. She has work directly within and for tribal governments for eight years in Oregon and British Columbia. She is a dual citizen of Canada and the U.S.

Shawn also holds PhD in Program Evaluation with an emphasis on Evaluation Capacity-Building for natural resource organizations and has consulted in strategic planning and evaluation with conservation and rural development organizations in the U.S. and Canada.  She is active within the conservation and rural capacity-building profession.

Shawn has taught leadership courses for more than 250 community and organizational leaders about leadership styles, cross-cultural communication, team cohesion, conflict styles, team decision-making tools, and project management. She is a sought-after facilitator and has facilitated over 200 think tanks, community input, strategic planning, and other sessions during her long career. She has long been committed to cross-cultural communication and relationship building.

Shawn served on the Tualatin River Watershed Council representing citizens-at-large before coming to the Network.



PhD. 2004         University of British Columbia, Vancouver, B.C. Faculty of Forestry.

Program Evaluation capacity building in natural resource organizations

M. Ag. 1990       Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR

Rural Development, Adult Education, and Natural Resource Economics (Interdisciplinary)

B.S.  1981          Michigan State University. East Lansing, MI

Forestry and Ag/Natural Resource Communication (dual major)



2010-2016 Senior Program Manager, Rural Development Initiatives, Oregon. Program manager for non-profit rural development organization. Strategic and administrative oversight of innovative rural development programs, including budget development and tracking, donor relations, cultivating collaborations and partnerships, managing contracts, designing and delivering training and networking sessions, including webinars and other remote delivery.

2007-2016 Adjunct faculty, Environmental Studies, Pacific University, Oregon Design and delivery of undergraduate Environmental Leadership courses and field studies course on culture and ecosystems in Hawai’i.

2007-2010   Staff chair, Oregon State University Extension, Warm Springs Indian Reservation, Oregon. Administrative leader for OSU Extension office on Indian Reservation. Supervise staff of tribal and non-tribal staff members, fiscal authority for tribal and university budgets, contract administration, liaison with tribal government, partnership development, grant writing and grant administration, reporting, stakeholder and community engagement, needs assessment and evaluation. Coordinated formal ceremonial Memorandum of Understanding between OSU and tribal government. Supervision of range land/natural resources and nutrition education faculty and staff.

2005-2007  Principal, Benchmark Consulting, Oregon. Organizational development, outreach and engagement, strategic planning, and program evaluation consultant for local and regional non-profit and environmental and natural resource organizations in Oregon and Canada.

1999-2005   Socio-Economic Research and Evaluation Specialist, Forest Research and Extension Partnership (FORREX), B.C., Canada. Extension Specialist and Senior program manager for a provincial research and education institute focused on sustainable natural resource management and communities (e.g. community forestry, non-timber forest products, and Aboriginal engagement). Created and organized/chaired two province-wide conferences: Social Indicators of Sustainability and Natural Resource Communities in Transition. Served as internal evaluator responsible for assessing program impact.

1998-1999 Principal, Resource Extension and Development Partners Consulting, B.C., Canada. Consultant for community economic and social capacity-building and education. Initiated, developed curriculum, and co-taught three 60-hour ‘Master Woodland Manager’ classes for small-scale private forest land owners. Coordinated economic development and institutional capacity-building with Kwakwa’ka’wak First Nations.

1996-1998   Director, Aboriginal Community Forestry Initiative, Musgamagw Tsawataineuk Tribal Council, Alert Bay, B.C., Canada. Facilitated forest-based economic development for 14 tribal First Nations.  Conducted needs assessments and feasibility studies related to local forest-based sustainable business opportunities.  Negotiated joint business ventures and MOUs between tribes and private and public forestry interests and agencies, developed funding proposals and coordinated training, internships, and business development. Served on provincial land use planning table representing First Nations for the Central Coast Land and Resource Management Plan.

1995-1996 Coordinator, ‘Healthy Communities’ Program, Campbell River, B.C., Canada. Administered municipal program to assess and improve social conditions as a determinate of human health. Initiated community-based process of developing measurement indicators for the Official Community Plan.  Facilitated public workshops and strategic planning of non-profit boards, designed and taught governance models to neighbourhood associations, chaired school/community committees, and served as advisor for municipal youth commission.

1991-1995 Program manager, Oregon State University Extension Service, Mill City, Oregon. Administered USDA-funded collaborative project in rural community with timber-dependent economy. Conducted needs assessments, curriculum development, facilitation, program planning, implementation, and evaluation, hiring and supervision of staff, volunteer management, fund raising and grant writing, budget development and tracking, and reporting. Led coalition of partners in creating “Santiam Canyon Youth and Families Alliance” (501 c 3).

1990 Consultant for Malawi Agricultural Research and Extension Project in Malawi, Africa. Oregon State University Office of International Research and Development.

1983-1987 Public Affairs Officer, Oregon Dept. of Forestry, Salem, Oregon. Conducted state-wide forestry information and education efforts, including routine contact with state-wide news media and facilitation of public meetings. Editor and writer of 40 issues of monthly magazine-style newsletter. Training and advising department personnel on public affairs approaches.



Tualatin River Watershed Council member at large, 2013-2016

-Advisory committee, Oregon Community Foundation K-12 Evaluation Program

-Advisory committee, Oregon State University Extension Metro Regional Program

-Design team for Pathways to Community Vitality, The Ford Family Foundation

-Co-chair, Environmental Evaluator’s Network Pacific Forum, 2013, Troutdale, OR

-Peer reviewer for social science manuscripts, Journal of Ecosystems and Management, Canada (2006-2010)

-Initiated and led “Evaluator’s Office Hours” program, hosted by Metro Regional Government, Oregon to build evaluation capacity in regional natural resource/environment organizations

-Proposal review committee for John Gray Environmental Education Program grants, Oregon Community Foundation

-Advisory committee, Boys and Girls Club, Warm Springs Indian Reservation

-Mediator/facilitator for interagency land use planning forum/process on conservation sustainability, Vancouver, Canada

-Scientific advisory committee, International Association for Society and Natural Resources international conference, Vancouver, Canada

-Facilitator, Environmental Evaluation Network national forum, Washington D.C.

-Sustainability Program Advisory Committee for Evaluation, British Columbia Forest Service Forest Science Board

-National conference proposal review committee for the American Evaluation Association Extension Education Evaluation Topical Interest Group

-Book reviewer, Canadian Journal of Evaluation

-Peer reviewer, Natural Resource Canada, Canadian Forest Service social science research publications

-National evaluation subcommittee for Canadian Climate Change Impact and Adaptation Program

-Technical Working Group member, Central Coast Land and Coastal Resources Management Land Use Planning Negotiation Table representing Aboriginal governments

-Chair, Regional Conference on Aboriginal Eco-tourism, Port Hardy, B.C., Canada

-Chair, Forum on “Aboriginal Wood Carving and Furniture Manufacturing:  An Economic Opportunity?” Campbell River, B.C., Canada