Chances are, if you have lived in the Nehalem Bay area any length of time, you know of Lane deMoll through her roles in the development of such north Tillamook County institutions as Fire Mountain School, Cart'm Recycling Center and the Lower Nehalem Community Trust.
Ask her what life is all about in the small coastal town of Manzanita and she sums it up in one word: sustainability.
Ever since she and her husband, architect Tom Bender, purchased property at the foot of Neahkahnie Mountain in 1976 and promptly built their home, their guiding philosophy has been to live in a small town and help it become a green, sustainable community.
Having grown up in a small artist community outside of Philadelphia, one not unlike Manzanita, deMoll says she comes by her "think outside of the box" mantra naturally. "It's in my genes," she says affectionately of the gift from her parents and grandparents.
As for her first few years in the community, deMoll said things just kept evolving.
"It wasn't just me; a lot of the same people made things happen," she says. "We live in a caring and generous community, helping each other to accomplish important things...that's the richness."
What deMoll particularly enjoys is the startup phase of a new endeavor and then moving on to the next project once an idea has become a reality. She admits to slowing down a bit, serving only on two boards presently - NeahCasa, a community housing trust dedicated to creating affordable housing on the north Oregon coast, and Fulcrum Community Resources, another nonprofit organization with the mission of fostering the transition of the Nehalem Bay community to a sustainable future.
Says deMoll, who is
Currently engaged in writing a novel "thinly disguised as what's happening in the community," deMoll believes that Manzanita and the surrounding area can serve as a model for other small towns.
"The beauty of this place is that it is doable here," she says. "Look at Cart'm...people can see it and how it works. There's cool ways for people to get involved and it feels really, really good."