Board of Trustees
Carol Heimgartner - Chairperson
Carol was the proprietor of Big Rock Designs in Coupeville and has been a PRI volunteer and donor for over ten years. She brings 30+ years of local knowledge to the board having served on several other community boards as a member and officer and the Coupeville Town Planning Commission Chairman. Her favorite saying is from Harriet Beecher Stowe: In all ranks of life the human heart yearns for the beautiful; and the beautiful things that God makes are His gift to all alike.
Paula Mihok - Treasurer; Vice-Chair
Paula and her husband Ted, both of whom are very active with the Central Whidbey Lions Club, live in Oak Harbor on Whidbey Island. They have been volunteers for five years. Paula has an event service called "Painture Face", and has done face painting at PRI events such as the Whidbey Island Cider Festival and Whidbey Raptor Day. Paula is currently the Missions and Outreach Director for her church.
Teresa Ellis - Trustee
Teresa, a long term volunteer at PRI has served as Treasurer in 2019 and 2020. She is a member of the Coupeville Lions Club and is active in many community based and charitable events on Whidbey Island. Teresa also served as the President of the Penn Cove Water Festival.
Tom Johnson, PhD - Trustee
Dr. Tom Johnson lives in Oak Harbor with Michele his wife. They have three children, all involved in science or writing. Tom taught and provided leadership at the University of Sioux Falls in South Dakota, and George Fox University in Oregon. He teaches a Bible study at PRI.
Ioana Popescu, PhD - Secretary
Ioana is a Biology professor at Drury University in Springfield, Missouri since 2001 and was a visiting professor at Whitworth University in Spokane in 1999-2000. She taught Field and Systematic Botany at Pacific Rim several summers between 2004-2010. For 15 years Ioana and her husband George Gibeau volunteer 1-3 months every summer PRI helping with a variety of projects, while enjoying great times with the people, plants, and places on Whidbey Island and the Puget Sound. Ioana is the curator of PRI's Herbarium Collection which can be found on Index Herbariorum.
Steve Marx - Trustee
Steve and his wife Christy lived on Whidbey Island for 19 years and have been PRI donors and volunteers for 16 years. While here, they raised two children and were extensively involved in the Coupeville community until they moved to Spokane in 2019. Steve served 23 years in the Navy and 11 years in Island County Public Works. He is currently the Light Department Director for the City of Cheney, WA and Christy works at a Physical Therapy clinic in Spokane.
Special Advisor to PRI
Randall Van Dragt, Ph.D
- Founding PRI Board Chair/Co-Treasurer
- Retired Calvin College (Michigan) professor
- Restoration Ecologist