TwispWorks Staff

Don Linnertz
Executive Director

Don Linnertz, Executive Director Having grown up on a farm in North Dakota, living in the Methow Valley is a welcome return to his roots. Don moved to Twisp in June 2014 after thirty years in Seattle. Careers in non-profit fundraising, hospitality and high tech have given him a broad background of skills he’s eager to put to work in the community.

Tori Karpenko
Director of Campus Operations

Tori Karpenko, Director of Partnerships & Operations Tori Karpenko is an artist, farmer, carpenter and non-profit leader. Tori first came to the Methow Valley in 2001 as the farm manager for Sunny Pine Farm. Tori lives south of Twisp with his son Tesh.

Chris Schneider
Director of Development & Marketing

Chris Schneider, Director of DevelopmentChris joins TwispWorks as Director of Development following more than 20 years doing communications, marketing and public relations for high tech and non-profit organizations. A Seattle native, Chris has been coming to the Methow Vally for years, and made it his home in September 2015.

Julie Tate-Libby Director of Programming

Julie Tate-Libby HeadshotA long-time Methow Valley resident, Julie teaches anthropology and sociology at Wenatchee Valley College and has conducted research on rural communities whose economies rely on tourism. Julie has served on the board of Okanogan Family Health Centers, the Merc Playhouse and the North Central Washington Community Foundation.

Sarah Prochnau
Director of Partnerships & Marketing Programs

Sarah ProchnauSarah moved to Pateros at the mouth of the Methow Valley in 2012. Her professional experiences range from managing punk rock bars, to teaching circus arts, to maintaining proper inventory levels of infectious materials for a Seattle biotech company.

Anne Acheson
Business Manager

Anne AchesonAnne has been coming to the Methow to bike, fish and enjoy the peaceful beauty since the 1980s. In 2008 she moved here, joining her brother and parents. Anne’s background includes experience in biotechnology, textiles and computing systems. She enjoys spending time with family and her Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever, Molly, as well as weaving, watercolors, fishing, biking and music.

Joe Bastian
Facilities Manager

Joe BastianJoe worked in the semi-conductor industry as a manufacturing engineer for 14 years before moving to the Methow in 2011. He lives on the south Fork of Gold Creek where he spends most of his free time either gardening or hiking, biking, climbing, sking the Sawtooth range.

2018 TwispWorks Board of Directors

TwispWorks Foundation Board of Directors

The TwispWorks Foundation is the 501c3 non-profit organization that owns and operates the TwispWorks campus. The mission of the TwispWorks Foundation is to increase economic vitality in the Methow Valley through education, agriculture, technology, art and culture.

Perri Howard

Perri HowardPerri Howard is a Methow Valley artist working in public art, painting, sculpture, and sound.

Raised in Marblehead, MA, she landed in Twisp as a 16 year-old on an Outward Bound Course and has returned to the valley for recreation and inspiration ever since, making a permanent home here in 2016, with her husband and two dogs.

Perri received her MFA from Cranbrook Academy of Art in 2001 and has served as a visiting artist at colleges and universities throughout the United States. She teaches community-based classes in drawing and field journaling and is adjunct faculty at Wenatchee Valley Community College.

A passionate advocate for artists and art space, Perri is honored to support the evolution of this remarkable creative community.

Steve Kern

Steve KernSteve became a part time resident of the Methow Valley in 2009 and moved here full time in 2013 after retiring from a career in manufacturing where he held a number of executive positions at various facilities in Washington State, Nevada, Pennsylvania and Liege, Belgium.

Besides loving skiing, snowshoeing, hiking, biking and almost all team sports, Steve has had a life long interest in politics and public policy particularly as they apply to preserving the spectacular beauty and rural character of the American West through thoughtful, appropriate economic development.

In TwispWorks, Steve sees a tremendous opportunity to support this approach to economic development through the creation of a robust and vital public square that also serves as an incubator for creative entrepreneurs.

Jim Salter

Jim SalterThough Jim’s great-great-uncles homesteaded in the Methow on property near Twin Lakes, he never came to the valley until 2002. Originally intending to be a farmer, he is now owner/general contractor at Blackcap Builders Collective.

In addition to building houses he also maintains a small hobby farm producing lamb, wool, and hay. His interest in sustainability (economic and environmental) is what led him to get involved with, first, The Partnership for a Sustainable Methow (PSM) and now TwispWorks.

Susan Donahue
Executive Member At Large

Susan DonohueSusan Donahue is a lawyer and artist living in the Methow Valley. She grew up in Bellevue, Washington, and received a Ph.D. in English from the University of Washington. She was an Assistant Professor of English at Virginia Tech and the University of Oklahoma before receiving her law degree from the University of Alabama. After practicing law in Birmingham, Alabama, she moved to the Methow Valley five years ago when her husband took a position as an English Professor at Wenatchee Valley College in Omak.

She opened her law office in Twisp shortly after arriving. She paints still lifes, landscapes and portraits in oils both studio work and plein air and has recently shown her work in local and regional galleries and juried shows.

Serving on the TwispWorks board perfectly combines her two activities of law and painting. She feels honored to be able to contribute to the work of the TwispWorks board.

Char Alkire

Char Alkire WebChar is a native of the Northwest. She became a part time valley resident in 2003. Fully retired after spending 40 years teaching in the field of science education, she and her husband of 44 years, now call the valley their home.

Initially moving to the valley for the recreation, Char quickly discovered the amazing Methow Valley community. She served on the board of the Methow Conservancy and has volunteered with numerous other organizations. Char is looking forward to serving on the board of TwispWorks, after being an advisory board member.

“It has been 10 years since the community gave TwispWorks the challenge to reinvent the TwispWorks campus into a modern community hub and economic engine for the Methow Valley. I am honored to serve on this board and help to create a sustainable and vibrant economic community.”

Joanna Bastian

Joanna BastianJoanna is a native of scenic Boise, Idaho, where she earned a B.A. in English, Technical Communications from Boise State University. While working at Micron Technologies in Boise, she was offered the opportunity to help start an Intel-Micron joint venture, IM Flash Technologies near Salt Lake City, Utah. At IMFT, Joanna worked with the documentation team to create integrated training documents, and acted as a communication liaison between engineering and production teams to create and efficiently reach training, production, and engineering milestones.

In 2011, Joanna moved to the Methow Valley to explore the stunning beauty of the North Cascades. She is the Administrative Officer for the Bear Fight Institute, a solar system research center located in Winthrop. Joanna is also the Lower Valley columnist for the Methow Valley News.

Phil Davis

Phil DavisPhil Davis is continually awed by the power of community that drives the Methow. He and his wife Cathy have owned property in the valley for 23 years, and now split their time between their West Seattle and West Chewuch homes. Phil has served on the Methow Conservancy board, and is excited to join the TwispWorks board as it builds partnerships in support of a sustainable, growing, and inclusive economy. He has held various leadership roles in business and non profit, with extensive experience in early stage and growth organizations.

Anne Eckmann

Anne EckmannAnne grew up in Seattle and moved to the Methow Valley in 1983 to spend the winter skiing after graduating from the University of Washington with a degree in Land Use Planning. She fell in love with the Mountain lifestyle and its community and never left!

After creating Central Reservations, she got her real estate license in 1985 and has been a real estate broker in the Methow Valley real estate ever since.

Anne raised two daughters in the Valley and has explored the many Valley trails and surrounding mountains on foot, skiis and bikes. She has been involved with Little Star School and other volunteer organizations over the decades. Anne brings her positive energy and knowledge of this diverse Valley to the Twisp Works Board and its effort to create a more economically resilient community.

Jane Gilbertsen

Jane GilbertsenJane fell in love with Methow Valley life almost 40 years ago. After 20 years of a litigation practice in Seattle she moved full time to her Winthrop smallholding. She divides her time between a variety of volunteer projects and caring for a remuda of mules, donkeys and horses and several rare breeds of chickens. Riding the territory reinforces her commitment to keeping the Methow as close as possible to open, healthy and vibrant in our changing world.

Rachel Hong

Rachel Hong HeadshotRachel grew up in Vermont. After nabbing a bachelor’s degree in English Lit at the University of Virginia and a law degree from the University of Michigan, she spent a few years working in politics in the other Washington, and then as a corporate litigator in Seattle. Organic farm school seemed like the obvious next step, and several years farming on the Westside followed that. Eventually she settled in the Methow Valley, both near Seattle loved ones, and close in spirit to her idyllic Vermont childhood.

Today, Rachel is a part time lawyer, part time orchard worker. Otherwise, when she’s not out walking with her dog, she is usually on a bicycle or working in her garden. She was drawn to TwispWorks’ inspired, creative, and novel vision of rural economic and cultural development, and is looking forward to adding value to her community through service on the board.

Baylie Peplow

Baylie PeplowBaylie is an illustrator and graphic designer who has lived in the Methow Valley on and off since the 90’s. After a high school career split between Liberty Bell High School and the Bush School in Seattle, she graduated from the University of Oregon with a degree in architecture, moved back to the Methow Valley where got her Montessori Teaching Certificate and spent 5 years working at Little Star School. Returning to Seattle in 2011, she launched her business Red Umbrella Designs, saw lots of great live music, learned how to country swing dance, tended some amazing urban vegetable gardens, and met the handsome fellow who is now her husband. Baylie, JB, and their son Arlo now live in Twisp. Baylie is excited to bring her perspective as an artist, an entrepreneur, and a new mom to the Twisp Works board.

Dennis Weston

Dennis Weston headshot

Raised in Soap Lake, Denny worked professionally as a CPA in the Seattle area after graduating from Central Washington University and later formed a private equity investment fund. Denny started visiting the Methow Valley as a part-timer in 1998 and moved here with his wife, Heidi, permanently in 2016.

Denny is an avid outdoorsman and musician. In addition to the many for-profit and non-profit boards throughout his career, Denny currently serves on the board of the Methow Valley Fly Fishers and previously served on the board of Methow Recycles.

Denny’s 38 years of experience working with entrepreneurs and early stage companies has given him many lessons-learned, many of them hard lessons, about growing businesses. He’s excited to have those experiences benefit our economy in the Methow Valley.

Ken Young

Ken YoungKen became a full-time resident in Mazama last April. He grew up in the Gold Country of California where he was was a special education teacher, principal and assistant superintendent in South Lake Tahoe. While there, he led a city-wide coalition to build a healthy community. Before moving here, he was Director of Professional Development for an international seminar company headquartered here in Bellevue. His career has been focused on leadership, training and coaching.

Along with his love of literature, music and art, enjoys trail running, strength training and hiking. He is s now attempting to learn cross country skiing.

Ken is honored to be a board member of TwispWorks and hopes to play a role in helping the organization strengthen economic vitality here in the valley.

TwispWorks Foundation Advisory Council Members

Art Gresh
Jennifer Lewis and Bryan Jaffe
Tom Venable
Martha Kongsgaard and Peter Goldman
Maud and Marc Daudon
Meg and Dan Donahue
Maggie Coon and Mark Wolf-Armstrong
Bo Thrasher
Richard Hart
Ed Alkire
Ray Johnston
John Battle
Crosby Carpenter

2018 PDA Board

Public Development Advisory Board

David Gottula, President
Ed Geiger, Treasurer
Mary Anne Quigley, Secretary
Casey Bouchard
Sharon Cohen