Skip to main content

Board & Staff

Who We Are

EcoSource Native Seed & Restoration is committed to Ecological Restoration in the Sage-Steppe Ecosystems. Introducing our full time staff:

Executive Director, Jennifer Taynton

Jennifer Taynton is a fifth generation family member to reside in eastern Oregon. Her Great Great Grandfather, William Louis Jackson Jones brought his bride over on the wagon train in the 1800's and settled in Harper, Oregon when their mule died on the trail. Jennifer feels a deep connection to the land her ancestors homesteaded many generations ago and wants to see the land healthy and resilient once again. With hard work and determination, Jennifer will lead EcoSource's program. She is currently focusing on grant writing and working with our partners on multiple restoration projects in eastern Oregon.

Native Seed Specialist, Susan Maupin

Sue Maupin joined our team in July of 2021 as a seed collection crew member. She brought along with her a desire to learn and grow. She quickly established her position as the Native Seed Specialist with a focus on all aspects of collection, cleaning, storage, production and restoration. She continues to advance her knowledge skills and abilities with EcoSource. During the Spring and Summer months, we can find Sue in the field monitoring collections and training entry level staff to properly identify and collect. In the fall we can find her immersed in sage-brush collection and production. During the short winter months, she stays busy creating technical manuals for entry level entrepreneurs to get established in the native seed industry. Sue is usually seen with her canine companion "Spud Tater", a golden border-collie mix. 

Native Seed Technician: Phil Looney

Phil Looney joined our team in 2022 as a Crew Leader for collection and cleaning. He returned to EcoSource this season to do small collections, but his main focus has been cleaning sage brush for a restoration project. Phil has toured the Bend Seed Extractory and has learned several beneficial tips to cleaning this very small seed. We look forward to watching Phil evolve in the new Restoration Economy.

Our Board of Directors at EcoSource Native Seeds & Restoration represent a cross-section of our community and are advocates for the cause. Board members work hard to ensure long-term sustainability of the organization so that the funds raised directly affect results. Introducing our current Board of Directors in order:


Board President: USDA Ecologist, Dr. Roger L. Sheley

Dr. Roger Sheley is a world renown author and ecologist, studying native vegetation and annual invasive species for over 35 years. Dr. Sheley is also a local farmer in Harney County and has an avid interest in seeing the restoration of ecological resources and economic vitality in this area he considers home. EcoSource is honored to have Dr. Sheley as the President of our Board of Directors.

Board VP: Rural Development Initiatives Director of Economic Vitality Services, Amy Hause

Amy Hause is the Director of Economic Vitality Services for Rural Development Initiatives, a non-profit that strengthens people, places and economies in the Pacific Northwest since 1991. She joined as a board member of EcoSource Native Seed and Restoration in February of 2021 when we first got started. She has been involved in the formation and organizational development of EcoSource since 2020, with an eye to increasing impact on the local economy in a way that aligns with environmental sustainability. She has 18 years of experience in nonprofit management, much of which has been focused on building equitable economies both internationally and in the Pacific Northwest region. Amy meets with our Executive Director on a regular basis to provide support and offer her wisdom and insight. 

Board Secretary: Local rancher, Rob Sharp

Board Member: Harney County Soil & Water Conservation Regional Manager, Jason Kesling

Jason Kesling is the Regional Director for the Harney County Soil and Water Conservation District. Jennifer and Jason met through collaborative meetings with High Desert Partnership. Jason enjoys gardening, owning and operating two large greenhouses providing vegetable to the community. He has a degree in wildlife biology from Oregon State University and prior to working with the HCSWCD, he worked for the Burns Paiute Tribe as a biologist. His interest is in working with landowners to improve vegetation and agriculture, conserving water and developing partnerships to work collaboratively to solve critical issues in Harney County. Jason is helpful to our Executive Director, offering his insight to preparing grant proposals for funding opportunities. We are so lucky to have Jason on our team.. 

Board Member: Botanist-Ecologist: Caryn Burri

Caryn was a botanist ecologist working for the Burns District BLM when the first collaborative meetings began to discuss the need of a Restoration Economy in Harney County. She championed the idea that Harney County needed Native Seed Storage, and was fundamental in establishing EcoSource in Harney County. Caryn has since transferred her career to the Vale District office in a department not affiliated with contracts for native seed. Now Caryn has freedom to support our development on a personal level as a Board Director. She is always helpful to our staff in teaching us about native species identification and collection cleaning and storage processes. She is quick to offer suggestions to help us continue to evolve in this industry successfully. We consider Caryn a valuable asset to our EcoSource mission and appreciate her wisdom and insight to restoration using diverse and genetically appropriate native vegetation.

Board Member: Retired Rancher and Producer, Bobb Breck

Bobb Breck has considered Harney County his home since he was a young boy riding his little motorcycle across the Alvord Desert. He was raised in a ranching and rodeo family and has a strong desire to help EcoSource achieve our mission in restoring the Sage-Steppe Ecosystems.