Sixteen Community Leaders Form KMUZ’s First Advisory Council

KMUZ is growing and taking our mission to the next level.  We are working to increase our power, ensure uninterrupted service, and evaluate our mission.  Our mission is to celebrate the people, culture, and civic life of the mid-Willamette Valley.  And we want to know if we’re providing relevant programming that meets the mission.

To that end, sixteen community leaders have agreed to serve as Advisory Council members.

We had our first meeting on May 13, 2019.  We are proud to introduce you to these people who have agreed to help KMUZ mature into a relevant partner with the community. To contact the Advisory Council please email at [email protected].


KMUZ Advisory Council 2023

Cindy Condon is retired from a long career with Pacific Pride Services, Inc., a Salem company serving petroleum distributors throughout the country. She was Vice President of Franchise Administration for 24 years before being named president in 2008 when the company was purchased by Wright Express (WEX) and operated as a wholly-owned subsidiary of WEX. She retired from Pacific Pride in 2010 to pursue her “next adventure.”

Cindy has always been involved in the community through a variety of channels, including local school PTC’s/Site Councils, Salem-Keizer Education Foundation (board member mid-1990’s), Marion-Polk Food Share volunteer, as the time between work and raising a family permitted. Retirement and grown children allowed Cindy more time to pursue opportunities and challenges with organizations in which missions and values align with her own. She is now involved with a variety of community organizations including Salem Electric Board, Salem City Club (board member, past president), Oregon Community Foundation Northern Willamette Leadership Council and Grant Reviewer, 3rd Grade Classroom Volunteer, and Radio Co-Host Legislative Matters: Tune In and Take Part, a KMUZ Willamette Wake-Up program.

In addition to work with community organizations, Cindy serves on the Oregon Health Insurance Network Advisory Committee and the Oregon Health Insurance Exchange/Marketplace Advisory Committee.

Cindy grew up in Toledo, Oregon, “a hurly-burly mill town built on a hillside” between Newport and Corvallis. She attended the University of Oregon and graduated with a BA in Biology, intending to pursue medicine until she took her first business management class when all plans changed. She took time off from school to follow a love interest to Hawaii and while there, worked at The Hawaiian Bagel Company and with the Neighborhood Justice Center of Honolulu, where she was trained to mediate disputes and was elected to the Makiki Neighborhood Association. She moved to Salem from Hawaii to attend Willamette University, where she received her MBA in 1983. She fell in love with and married Dick Condon. They are the proud parents of 2 grown men with lives of their own. The Condons live in West Salem and now tend six laying hens. Dick and Cindy are grateful that the hens won’t go to college.

John Gear practices as John Gear Law Office ( John has always preferred radio to television. He was a news volunteer for KBOO in the mid-late 1990s and branched out into book reviews, interviews, and serving as a fill-in host for the morning talk radio strip. He has volunteered with KMUZ since its earliest days before it was on the air, eventually writing its bylaws and having the organization formation meeting in his office and serving as its counsel since. From 2007 through 2019, John lived in Salem with his wife, the Rev. Mary Mangione Gear, while they worked to provide their two completely unspoiled cats, Simon and Lucy, with the food and heated blankets they so deserve. Since Mary has accepted the call to serve as minister for the Olympia Unitarian Universalist Congregation starting in August 2019, John will relocate, but he plans to keep his law office and practice in Salem for the indefinite future.

Sandra Hernandez-Lomeli is the youth program director of Mano a Mano and has been the coordinator of Latinos Unidas Siempre since 2015. LUS was founded in 1996 by a group of Latinx youth in Salem, who decided to take a stand against what they described as “the constant profiling and criminalization of youth of color by local authorities and of immigration raids terrorizing our families.” Since then, LUS has grown as an organization that empowers youth through leadership development, which is exercised through civic engagement, grassroots organizing, and community engagement. “We work around issues of immigrant rights, economic, environmental and racial justice as well any local issues that affect our youth members and their families,” Sandra explained. “The mission of LUS is ultimately for every youth that comes to our program to feel empowered and capable of being a leader in their community in different ways that fit the youth’s goals and needs.” Sandra, who lives in Salem, has a B.A. in Political Science from Willamette University.

Jenny Jopp teaches History at Willamette University, where she offers courses ranging from American Legal History to “What is a Just Society?” Her research centers on 19th century Oregon, particularly on advocates for social and racial justice like John Beeson and Obed Dickenson.

She has lived in Salem for 28 years. She and Bill Smaldone raised their daughters in and still live in one of Salem’s historic neighborhoods. She has been active in various community organizations over the years, most recently with the Willamette Heritage Center. At the WHC, she helped guide the merger of the Marion County Historical Society and the Mission Mill Museum and served for many years on the board of the new WHC for the last three years as president.

Jan Margosian, a migrant from Pocatello, Idaho, stopping in Boise, where she attended Boise State University (65-69). She was a reporter for the Boise Statesman during college and then moved to Salem in 1969, looking for a reporting job. No jobs so went into Public Relations and became a “Flack.” for Willamette University. Married Les Margosian. For fun, ran local, state, and federal political campaigns. I ended up specializing in judicial campaigns. She joined the Oregon Department of Justice as the Consumer Information Coordinator for six Attorneys General. Almost 30 years later, retired and found joy in non-profit Board work. Still dabbling in politics. Shares voice time with radio partner Cindy Condon on KMUZ talk show Legislative Matters: Tune-In and Take Part. Currently, vice-chair of the Northwest Human Services Board and serves on the program committee for the Salem City Club. She hopes to be part of the solution for homelessness in our community.

Born and raised in Salem, Vanessa Nordyke is a member of the Willamette Valley Inn of Court, Rotary Club of Salem, and the City of Salem Citizen Budget Committee. Vanessa recently served as President of the Oregon State Bar for the year 2018. As the youngest-ever elected OSB President, Vanessa’s accomplishments include updating all OSB new lawyer programming, supporting the creation of mental health CLE requirement, and launching OSB’s first-ever Wellness Summit. She is a past member of the Marion County Sheriff’s Office’s Citizen Advisory Committee, the City of Salem Citizen Police Review Board, and the City of Salem Social Services Advisory Board. She also helped found the Marion County Circuit Court’s Veterans Treatment Court. She is a member of the ABA Commission on the Future of Legal Education, a commission dedicated to modernizing legal education nationwide.

Vanessa graduated with honors from Georgetown University School of Foreign Service with a Bachelor’s of Science in International Political Economy in 2002.  After graduating from the University of Oregon School of Law in 2008, Vanessa was admitted to the prestigious Honors Attorney Program with the Oregon Department of Justice, where she has made her career ever since, currently as a civil litigator. Vanessa is President-Elect of the Willamette Valley Inn of Court for 2019. She is the recipient of Oregon DOJ’s Excellence in Justice Award and University of Oregon School of Law’s Outstanding Young Alumnus Award.

Deb Patterson has spent over 20 years in healthcare advocacy: as the director of an international health organization, as the founding vice president of a children’s health foundation, and in several other capacities in healthcare access and education. She is also ordained clergy in the Congregational Church, and the mother of two young adult children, one of whom has special needs, for whom she is a personal support worker. Deb is a strong advocate for healthcare for all, for giving every child the education they need to succeed, and for our environment and human rights.

Rev. Dr. Patterson holds a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in Music, a Master of Health Administration from Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, and master’s and doctorate degrees from Eden Theological Seminary.

Cynthia Richardson has for the last two years, served as the director of Student Equity, Access, and Advancement for Salem Keizer Public Schools. Cynthia says this work is “very close to my heart and my passion for helping young people attain their goals and dreams.” In her new position, Richardson is organizing and leading the district effort “to provide better access to education for our students of color, students of poverty and English language learners.” Cynthia is a graduate of the University of North Texas and the University of Texas at Tyler. She has served as an educator for the past 39 years in Texas, Nebraska, and Oregon.  Her career includes serving as a high school teacher, Administrative Assistant of Student Services, elementary principal, high school assistant principal, middle school assistant principal, and Principal of Adam Stephens Middle School.  She is the first African American high school principal in Salem Keizer Public Schools.  She served as principal of McKay High School (2003 – 2010) for seven years and principal of North Salem High School (2010- 2017) for seven years.

John Van Dreal, Principal John Van Dreal Consulting LLC, school psychologist and the director of the security, safety, and risk management for the Salem-Keizer School District. He has more than 30 years of experience in threat assessment and management, psycho-educational evaluation, crisis intervention, behavioral intervention, and security and risk management systems consultation. In 1999, he began the development and implementation of the Salem-Keizer Model, a multiagency student threat assessment system that is considered by experts to be a leading practice and is identified by the U.S. Department of Education and the What Works Clearinghouse as a best-practices program. As a practitioner, he has conducted thousands of threat assessments and managed hundreds of high-risk cases. He served as the chair of Oregon’s Mid-Valley Student Threat Assessment Team from its inception in 2000 through 2015 and continues to provide consultation to its membership. He is the editor and principal author of the book Assessing Student Threats: Implementing the Salem-Keizer System, Second Edition, and he has co-authored a number of threat assessment and school security projects, including legislation. He currently advises the Oregon Governor’s Task Force on School Safety.

He has advised on, or contributed to, a number of threat assessment guides and has been interviewed by a number of television, radio, and print news outlets, including National Public Radio, Oregon Public Broadcasting, Mother Jones, Esquire, and HBO.

John is dedicated to his own community, patronizing locally owned establishments and supporting a number of nonprofit arts and human services organizations. He is a musician, a published poet, and a nationally renowned fine artist with paintings in a number of notable collections. Finally, he says he is lucky to be the partner of a gifted school counselor, and he is a proud father of two brilliant adult children and a loving companion to two pets.

Carlee Wright is a community instigator with a grand love for Salem and notably fashionable shoes who turns waste into wearable art in her “spare” time. When not writing, editing and publishing Press Play Salem, arts + entertainment + culture magazine, you can find her organizing events such as TEDxSalem, and helping with marketing and graphic design for local arts & culture organizations.

Lynn Fitch is a highly motivated and capable non-profit professional with 40+ years of management, development, marketing and communications experience. Recently retired, Lynn is currently mid-way through a multi-year international course to become a Druid. She lives in Olympia, Washington and spends much of her time hiking, foraging for mushrooms and wild medicinal plants and is an avid gardener and food preserver. According to Fitch, “helping KMUZ-FM over the last dozen+ years has been a labor of love; born from a passion for local, community radio that began in the 1980’s, when I was the station manager for a small station in the middle of the Aleutian Islands.

Dave Hammock began his public broadcasting career at the University of Alaska Fairbanks in 1970, at KUAC-FM & TV. Although he has worked in public television and urban public and commercial radio stations, most of his broadcast career has been at rural, community radio stations in Alaska. The Alaska stations he managed all participated in the Alaska Public Radio Network and he once served as host/anchor of APRN’s flagship daily news magazine, Alaska News Nightly. He became Manager of KMUN-FM in Astoria, Oregon in 2004. While at the helm of KMUN, the station joined the Northwest Public Affairs Network (NPAN), converted to in-house digital audio systems and added KTCB-FM, Tillamook and KCPB-FM, Warrenton to the Coast Community Radio family. He most recently assisted KKRN-FM, Bella Vista began broadcasting in rural Northern California.

Dr. Tom O’Connor is internationally recognized for his communication, facilitation, and cultural-change skills in the specialty area of criminal justice. Tom’s cutting edge work on facilitating whole system change takes him to many states in the U.S. and to countries including New Zealand, Canada, Australia, England, Ireland, and France. His company, Transforming Communication, helps organizations co-create better patterns of communication for more effective outcomes. Tom is a life-long learner with a unique perspective on the human condition. He grew up in a working-class area of Dublin and lived as a friar (a wandering monk) for nine years with a Catholic religious order called the Carmelites. Tom currently lives in Oregon with his wife and daughter. He can be reached at [email protected].