Our Mission & Vision

raingardenSustainable Ballard, a blueprint for Everytown, USA, educates, inspires, and engages neighbors to take action to live more sustainably both individually and collectively. Our vision is an inclusive, joyful, sustainable community co-creating a world for this and future generations where eco-systems are healthy and peace is inevitable.

About Us

festinfobooth2012Sustainable Ballard is now 15 years old.  Formed in 2003, we were the first neighborhood sustainability group in Seattle and a founding organization of SCALLOPS (Sustainable Communities All Over Puget Sound). We’ve gained local, national and international recognition for our grassroots approach to community action addressing climate change.

SewfunThe goal of Sustainable Ballard is to help prepare ourselves and our community to sustain and thrive in a post-peak-oil future, by supporting and inspiring each other to build a healthy and joyful life that is environmentally, socially and personally sustainable. To achieve this resiliency, we believe some key ingredients are: Getting connected with our neighbors to strengthen the social fabric of the community; learning new skills; getting educated on sustainability related matters; building a local food supply and a local economy, and sharing resources.


We invite all of our Ballard neighbors and friends to become more connected with others and the community by participating in Sustainable Ballard activities, including learning opportunities, community service, resource sharing, social events, and more. When we engage, we become part of creating the thriving community and lifestyle we want and need.


Our Team

Andrea Faste  Board of Directors / PEG (email Andrea)

Andrea was born in Tacoma before the Baby Boom, and came of age during the height of the hippie era. She grew up in Edmonds in an idyllic setting, swimming in Puget Sound, skiing, taking part in clubs. As a student at Scripps College in southern California, Andrea rejoiced on days that it rained. Her graduate work in Chinese language and literature included a year in Taiwan. Andrea came back to the U. of W. at the time of the Kent State tragedy, and became involved in the anti-Vietnam War movement. Andrea married in 1975 to a fellow grad student and their daughter was born in 1983. The family moved to Ballard in 1985 and Andrea has been here ever since. She has participated quite a bit in the life of our community: PTA, gardening, helping to build neighborhood parks through Groundswell NW, serving 19 years on the board of Fremont Public Association (aka Solid Ground), and eventually ended up attending the founding meeting of Sustainable Ballard in 2004​. Andrea has been involved with strategy sessions, the festivals, the old energy committee, edible garden tour, and is currently helping cook Sunday Dinners for those who need a hot meal. It’s all good. Andrea brings board experience, time, enthusiasm and an abiding faith that building sustainable activity strengthens community for the long haul.

Bev Beppler  Free Letters Home (email Bev)
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Bev was a volunteer at the Seattle Animal Shelter for ten years when she decided it was time to connect and help serve the homeless population of Ballard instead. Her desire to serve and the opportunity to connect with Sustainable Ballard aligned to create a Ballard chapter of the Free Letters Home program, running since 2013. You can’t solve all of someone’s problems with a letter and a stamp, but if you can offer dignity and respect, that connection brings intangible benefits that are tremendously meaningful. Bev has lived in Ballard going on 20 years, and is grateful for the opportunity to love and validate all people in her community.

Camilla Walter  Meals With Neighbors (email Camilla)

Camilla lives in Ballard and works to coordinate volunteers for Meals with Neighbors.  She is an activist, a book-lover, a coffee-drinker, and a sister who cares deeply about making our neighborhood livable for all. Camilla is the Development Director for Real Change, on the Board of Directors of Earth Share Washington, a mentor for the If Project and has a weekly program on KBFG.  She brings years of experience in nonprofit development and volunteer management to this role, and can’t wait to meet you at the next Ballard Sunday Dinner or over breakfast at St. Luke’s!

Eric Smith  Board of Directors / CORe Team (email Eric)
Eric believes in the value of people coming together in community to solve local challenges while enjoying each others company, companionship, and support. He says, “We’re all in this together, let’s have a good time… and fix things while we’re at it!”  He brings us the unique perspective of a social-purpose entrepreneurial small business background which he developed over several decades after founding and managing a successful local financial services practice. Eric supported and participated in many of our annual festivals. He developed the Sunset Hill Microfarm, a private community garden and hosted for our Garden Tour there one year. Eric has presented on the economy and sustainable, responsible, impactful investing topics at our festivals and member meetings. He believes in the power of focused organizations of people, both for-profit and non-profit varieties, to help solve some of the biggest challenges facing people and planet.  Eric has been active in the socially responsible impact investment movement since 1986. He is a Certified Financial Planner practitioner, Accredited Investment Fiduciary, and Senior Financial Advisor with Natural Investments, LLC.

J.B. Harmon   Ballard Tool LIbrary Manager (email JB)

J.B. Harmon graduated from Cal Poly with a degree in Mechanical Engineering in 2007.  While in school, he worked at a machine shop for five years in order to gain hands-on manufacturing experience.  This proved to be a formative time that followed him throughout his career as he managed or established workshops at several companies.  In addition, J.B. Harmon also served in the Peace Corps in Ghana for two years where he gained experience in teaching, grant writing, and community development.  As Ballard Tool Library’s manager, J.B. is excited to put his experience to good use in order to build a vibrant and sustainable tool library.

Jenny Heins  Board President / RainWise Lead, Festival Organizer (email Jenny)
Jenny has been practicing conservation since she was a child, thanks to Ranger Rick and the Keep America Beautiful campaign of the early 70s, but she only became an activist when she discovered Sustainable Ballard in 2004 and now is very “active.”  Within Sustainable Ballard, she heads up a number of our activities, including the Annual Festival, the Ballard Tool Library, our RainWise work, and the administrative work of our Board. She’s also a key collaborator with SCALLOPS (Sustainable Communities All Over Puget Sound). Outside of Sustainable Ballard, she is a contractor with the NW EcoBuilding Guild.   Jenny produced the Seattle Green Festival as Regional Director for four years, and had her own business:  Small Wonder Farm – a small local nursery growing gourmet vegetable and herb starts and educating neighbors how to grow their own food.  Jenny has been a Ballard resident since 1991.

Jody Grage  Ballard Knitters for People Experiencing Homelessness Lead (email Jody)
Jody was part of both the original Sustainable Seattle and Sustainable Ballard organizers.  She is a retired special education teacher who owns and lives in the oldest house in Ballard which is surrounded by vegetable garden.  Jody has been a part of the Green Party at the national, state, and local levels since the 1980s.  Other interests include knitting and other needlework, Norwegian folk costumes, voluntary simplicity, peacekeeping, vegetable gardening, winter, and community.

Julia Field  Bakery Gleaning Lead, Strategic Advisor (email Julia)
Julia found Sustainable Ballard in 2006, and got right in up to her elbows! Through participation in SB festivals, projects, and other learning adventures, she’s remodeled her life, home, and garden to be more and more green. Julia is part of SB’s RainWise team, helping more Ballard neighbors manage stormwater at home, and she leads the Bakery Gleaning project.. She is the founder and former program director of Undriving, the innovative car-use-reduction organization that was born in the creative cauldron of Sustainable Ballard in 2007. She’s a designer, artist, and instigator, and SB is one of her mediums.

Katie Shinn  Market Gleaning Lead

Katie has been involved in the Sustainable Ballard Market Gleaning Project for four years and in 2018 stepped into the project lead role. She is a Seattle native and lives in Ballard. A former special education teacher, she raised her kids in Ballard and enjoys being involved in the Ballard community. In her free time Katie enjoys being outdoors, hanging out with her teenage children, walking her dog, reading, and any type of live performance

Margaret Wetter  Administration & Publicity, Meaningful Movies : Sustainable Ballard (email Margaret)

Sustainable Ballard came to Margaret’s attention while working on a project with the EarthCare team at her church.  A 25-year resident of Whittier Heights (and lifelong Seattle-area resident), Margaret had been looking for ways to combine her interests in sustainability, social justice and community, and Sustainable Ballard brings much of these together!  Now retired after 30 years with the City of Seattle at Seattle Center, Margaret spends her time as the contracted administrative assistant and publicity coordinator for Sustainable Ballard, volunteering on the social justice initiatives at Our Redeemer’s Lutheran Church, gardening, quilting and spending time with her 22-year-old daughter.  She is also a member of the Meaningful Movies : Sustainable Ballard Team, a film series on “all things sustainable”.

Mary Olson  Board Member (on Sabbatical) (email Mary)
mary o 110 x 110
Mary discovered Sustainable Ballard after moving to Ballard in 2013. After moving all the way from Boston, Mary was looking for a new, sustainably-minded community.  Beginning as the Treasurer, Mary took on the VP role in late 2015.  


Paula Jenson  Board of Directors / PEG Team, Ballard SproutsLittle Free Libraries, Edible Garden Tour (email Paula)

Fifteen years ago, Paula clearly remembers being jazzed by the first mention of Sustainable Ballard’s formation, by which time she and her husband had been in Ballard for 18+ years, watching two kids grow up and moving into the community. She’s always been a gardener, and has been involved locally with SB’s urban crop circle, gardening guild, community cooking and gardening projects and the Edible Garden Tour. Paula is actively involved with the Literacy Council of Seattle and proudly shares a great variety of books in her Little Free Library.


Julia Park  

Valued Board member Julia Park passed away on July 11, 2018. She will be sorely missed as a friend to Ballard and to our board members. For more info on Julia visit In Memoriam: Julia Park



The board is actively recruiting for new board candidates, especially those who can contribute in any of the following ways:

  • Contribute to the board’s diversity
  • Have experience with non-profit financial planning and budget forecasting
  • Have experience with leadership development and support
  • Willing to commit 3-5 hours per month attending board meetings and events
  • Willing to lead, organize and/or present at one or more events per year

If you are interested in this volunteer opportunity, please contact our President Jenny Heins, via email or call (206) 384-0053.