Board of Directors
Katy Reed Preston, Executive Director
Katy has spent the past two decades working with struggling readers. She attended Ithaca College in New York, earning a degree in Speech and Language Disorders. Having grown up in Oregon, she returned to her hometown to acquire a Masters in Education degree at Lewis and Clark College in Portland, Oregon.
She worked for ten years as a Teacher of the Deaf for Northwest Regional Education Service District. The majority of her work was focused on deaf and hard-of-hearing children between the ages of 3-5. She is the author of Metaphor Magic, written to help children understand and analyze metaphors, and is the co-author for a very popular storybook-based curriculum, Happily Ever After: Using Storybooks in Preschool Settings.
After leaving the workforce to raise her family, she began volunteering in the public school her two daughters attended. Working on a daily basis with struggling readers, she volunteered hundreds of hours to help these children achieve literacy skills. This experience led her to the development of The Clackamas Bookshelf, with the hope of bridging the learning gap she saw between children who had access to books at home, and those who did not. Her goal is to increase book ownership throughout the entire county.
One of her favorite books is The Dot by Peter H. Reynolds, because it illustrates how each person has a gift to offer the world, and that one just needs figure out what the gift is.
Erika has been a partner and graphic designer at Creative Abandon for over 20 years. She has worked with clients in many industries including high tech, food manufacturing, employee benefits, and financial services.
Before having a family, Erika spent several years volunteering for non-profits in the local sailing community. When her children started elementary school, she focused her efforts on supporting their education by helping in the classroom, chairing fundraising events, and serving on the parent organization board in a variety of capacities.
She loves books and was thrilled when her boys started reading on their own for pleasure for the first time. When they were small, one of her favorites to read was Are You My Mother?
Ben is the Loan Program Manager for Mercy Corps Northwest, a non profit organization supporting local entrepreneurs through classes and access to capital. Since graduating from Oregon State University with Bachelor's degrees in Finance, Management and International Business, Ben found a passion for supporting small businesses and has spent his career in financial services.
After previously serving as a Board Member for Ncompass, a non profit who supports an orphanage in Haiti, he has now turned his volunteer efforts locally. In addition to supporting the Clackamas Bookshelf, Ben sits on the Parks and Recreation Committee for the city of Gladstone. He grew up in Gladstone and lives there with his wife and son.
In 2015, Ben set a New Years Resolution of reading one book a month and rediscovered his love for reading. He is proud to have held to that goal since then, and his list of books to read keeps growing larger and larger. His son, Noah, loves books and has inspired his love of reading even more. Outside of work and volunteering, Ben is an avid Trail Blazers fan and loves to barbecue, read, and get outdoors. One of his favorite children's books is T-Veg, the Story of a Carrot-Crunching Dinosaur by Smriti Prasadam-Halls.
Michael Milch retired in 2008 from a career as a consulting pension actuary to devote time to his twin grandchildren (now teenagers) and a more active civic life. A former Gladstone City Councilor, Michael is committed to strengthening the “social infrastructure” of his community through support of public schools, libraries, and parks. He serves on the Gladstone Library Advisory Board and chairs the Gladstone School District Budget Committee.
He earned a Master’s Degree in Religious Education from Claremont School of Theology and spent fifteen years as a church educator and church business administrator. He has a B.A. in Mathematics from the University of California in San Diego.
Michael and his three younger sisters grew up on a steady literary diet of the “Beginner Book” series (by Dr. Seuss and others), but today he and his wife, Kat, love engaging their youngest grandchildren in the serious silliness of the works of Sandra Boynton (But Not the Hippopotamus).
Nancy is a lifelong educator and learner. She spent her first 18 years in suburban Chicago and for the last 46 has thoroughly enjoyed being an Oregonian. Nancy received a Bachelor's degree in General Science and Master's degree in Science and Math Education from Oregon State University. Go Beavs!
Nancy’s teaching career began at Lebanon High School, followed by 28 years as a teacher and principal for the Gladstone School District. Over those many years, she established deep roots throughout the community and in retirement continues to pursue her passion— teaching!
Nancy first learned of The Clackamas Bookshelf when Katy approached her about relocating to an empty modular classroom behind Kraxberger Middle School, rather than Katy’s garage! As the success of The Clackamas Bookshelf has grown, so has the need for an additional modular. The Clackamas Bookshelf is thankful to the Gladstone School District for providing this space as we partner in serving the educational needs of children throughout Clackamas County.
During the pandemic, Nancy has enjoyed delivering purchased surprise book bags to families, picking up many generous book donations, and distributing carefully selected grade-level book bags to our participating schools to provide to their students. The creativity and continued support of our community have not allowed the challenges of COVID -19 restrictions to derail our mission. We are so grateful!