“I grew up playing in the woods and creeks,” says Laurie Trieger, who lived in Philadelphia with her mom, but attended the Miquon School out in the country, where her mother worked in administration. “It was very ’70s, a radical creative education. I learned critical thinking and never had a letter grade.” After high school, Trieger waited tables and also volunteered at the Elizabeth Blackwell Health Center for Women, then was hired there full-time. In 1982, she met Larry Coxe in Philly. Two years later, they sold everything and departed. “Let’s check out the West Coast,” she said, and they wound up in Yachats, where they enjoyed cheap rent and beach walks until daughter Amalia was born in 1986. “We moved to Eugene in ’87, and bought a house in Whiteaker within a year. Larry worked at the Red Barn and I got involved with the neighborhood council.”
They had a son, Dion, in 1990, and she began volunteering with FOOD for Lane County, located nearby. “Larry began working there when they moved to west Eugene in 1999,” she says. “He still does. I worked there till 2007, coordinating countywide gleaning.” She helped gleaners (people who collect leftover produce) organize statewide and pass a gleaning tax credit to incentivize growers. Afterwards, she spent five years as executive director of Lane County Healthy Active Youth, focused on reducing childhood obesity. The Neighborhood Economic Development Corporation (NEDCO) recruited her in 2012 to help develop its Sprout! Regional Food Hub in Springfield. She currently works for Family Forward Oregon, advocating for women and working families. “I love it!” she says. “It ties all my work together, working for policies that make the system more fair.”
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