GEROD RODY – President and Founder
I’m Gerod Rody, who thought up and co-founded OUT4S, and I now serve as Board President. I’m often the face of the organization, in addition to performing data entry and anything else that needs doing. My day job is at the Bainbridge Graduate Institute (BGI) as Marketing Project Manager, where I love all things that creatively share “brand” as an authentic story. I also graduated from BGI with an MBA in Sustainable Business in 2009, and met fellow graduate and OUT4S co-founder Julian O’Reilley there on our woodsy orientation.
Prior to BGI, I worked in various marketing and community engagement roles including time at gProjects, Meyer Wells and Organic Comfort Food Cafe, which I developed as the first organic restaurant in Pierce County. My undergrad studies at the Jackson School at the University of Washington, was in European Studies, focused on the intersection of identity and housing in Sweden. I maintain a healthy obsession with all things Swedish and am interested in running, great food, creativity and adventure.
I started up OUT4S initially to meet great people (and maybe get a date). Since then, the people I’ve met have become my family. Over the past 3 years, I’ve seen OUT4S evolve into the beginning of a movement that crosses all sorts of lines, threatening to connect the gays and the greens in ways no one thought possible and help redefine the oft-narrowly used term sustainability into something that creates equitable thriving human and natural ecosystems for all.
MELANIE COERVER – Board Member
I’m Melanie Coerver, OUT4S board member. Before moving to Seattle, WA I worked in a Florida Wildlife Refuge. One day, while lining a cage with newspaper, I read an article about the WTO protests. As a gay environmentalist who had always been interested in the “big picture”, I felt an irresistible calling to get out of Florida and see this mythical place where people cared enough about the global economy to take it to the streets. I arrived in Seattle months later: homeless, hungry, and completely starry-eyed, eventually working as an Environmental Analyst for the Seattle Department of Transportation. I’ve never left.
I now have a home- with a garden, chickens, and a kitchen that shows an obsession with good food. I’m still starry-eyed, but after years of participating in radical reform groups my preference is for more polite, nuanced forms of activism. Now, my hobbies include reading literature and government reports; attending meetings; and devising policy and program ideas for saving the world.
MATT LANDERS – Secretary
I’m Matt Landers, one of the newest Out for Sustainability board members. I am the Public Policy and Communications Coordinator for the Greater Seattle Business Association (GSBA), the largest LGBT and allied business chamber in the country, where I work to combine business development with social action and leadership in the LGBT and allied community.
Originally from Connecticut, I gradually moved West over the last decade (with a few detours to Spain), acquiring degrees in Geography from Macalester College in St. Paul and the University of Oregon. With my particular academic background, choosing where to live was a very deliberative process, but Seattle took the prize without too much competition. I moved here for both the natural and human environments, and I can’t get enough the Pacific Northwest. I love getting out to the mountains as often as possible, although I’ve recently been distracted by walking around and exploring more of my new city.
JOHN CARROLL – Board Member
Bio Coming Soon
JENNIFER FREY – Treasurer
I’m Jennifer Frey, committed volunteer turned Board Member. After the 2011 Pride Parade, I searched for volunteer opportunities with LGBTQ environmental non-profits to help clean up after this yearly celebration and found OU4S. I started as a volunteer for the annual dinner and began planning the 2012 Earth Gay and Greener Pride events. Since then I have continued planning for the ever fun and sexy EarthGay, Greener Pride and OUT at the Beach events, while recently accepting a position on the Board.
My roots in sustainability started at the age of two when I used my sandbox pail to collect the construction scraps from the home my family built and I graduated into pulling, straightening nails from salvaged lumber to the full range of construction tasks before I had a drivers license. In college I interned at a sustainable best management practice think tank for the residential building industry, where I helped develop designs that were presented to former Vice President Al Gore and a team from the EPA.
Currently I am a Project Manager with Sellen Sustainability, providing sustainable construction consulting and training services primarily for the Pacific Northwest and Las Vegas regions, with over 20 years of experience in the built environment. I am most passionate about conserving natural resources through efficiency and closed loop recycling systems. In my spare time I paint encaustics (pigmented beeswax), take photographs, and study at Bainbridge Graduate Institute.
I’m Brendan Cook, Out4s board member based in San Francisco, CA. I work at the Center for Resource Solutions, a renewable energy focused non-profit that focuses on market and policy solutions to our energy situation. My past work and education have taken me around the world where I had the life changing experience of living in Hungary and Sweden to receive my MSc in Environmental Policy Sciences and Management through the interdisciplinary Erasmus Mundus program.
My sustainability interests were influenced by growing up in the deserts of Arizona and has only expanded through hands on learning in permaculture, surrounding myself with sustainability enthusiasts, technical work and community organizing. I’m excited to be involved in queer and environmental community organizing in my current San Francisco Bay Area home (and beyond) where being a part of the LGBTQ community is important to my daily life, as is gardening!
Emeritus Board Members
Julian O’Reilley is a key reason OUT for Sustainability ever came into being. Her roles ranged from co-founder with Gerod, planning events and making connections, to engaged board member advocating for ever higher standards of practice and alignment with our mission. Julian served on the board (the one she helped create) for our first five years and helped launch every major program in those first few years.
Elan Keehn was one of the early OUT4S board members, discovering the organization quickly after moving back to Seattle and quickly making an impact. She nurtured the team of board members and volunteers, actively involved with Earth Gay, Coming Out Local, and many other projects. She advocated for youth involvement leading to more all-ages events and targeted outreach.
Ryan Hawkes came to OUT4S through the Coming Out Local dinner as a key volunteer in 2010. He brought us new level of due diligence asking “why” for every new idea, serving as board secretary, and bridging our big vision with practical steps to get there. Ryan’s advocacy for diversity, process, and team development made OUT4S stronger, as did his successful management of Greener Pride in 2013.
Cynthia Buhr was more than just the first lawyer on the OUT4S board. She brought an ability to see the implications of any decision, getting into the gritty details of strategy and logistics. Her expertise in organizational development resulted in board insurance, revised and realistic bylaws, and a stronger application for our nonprofit status.
Bart Reynolds was one of our early sponsors as the then owner of Poco Wine Room. He came to the organization with a passion for the environment and community systems. He brought quiet wisdom and an easy smile, helping the organization reach its 501(c)3 status and simpler practicalities like a proper PO Box and improved financial systems.
ARIYAH DESOUZA – Board Member Emeritus, 2009-2011
Ariyah DeSouza first met OUT4S at GreenFest Seattle in 2009! Over the next 2 years she served as Vice President and Treasurer. She wrote over a dozen articles, sewed napkins, led strategic planning, organized events and advocated for every greater definition of diversity (like not staying only in Seattle).
SCOTT LANSING – Board Member Emeritus, 2009-2011
Scott Lansing moved to Seattle, googled “green gays,” found OUT4S and started volunteering. After helping with every single thing we did for months, it was only natural that he apply to the board. He has served as Secretary, helped organize events like Earth Gay 2010 and advocated for the highest integrity in every action we undertake.
CORY-JAMES CLOUSE – Board Member Emeritus, 2009-2011
Cory James Clouse was one of our first volunteers, tabling at GreenFest in 2009. Since then he served as Treasurer, Secretary and founded the Finance Committee. He wrote our initial bylaws, incorporated us as a registered Charity and worked extensively to ensure our organizational sustainability.