Paulette Pyle, director of grass roots for Oregonians for Food and Shelter, on Oct. 14 received the Ted Young Award at the annual meeting of the Oregon Forest Industries Council in Sunriver.
The award is presented annually to a member of the OFIC family who exemplifies the virtues of the late Ted Young — a “hardworking, dedicated person of immense integrity, whose word means something. The award recipient is committed to community, family and the forestry profession,” the organization said in a prepared statement.
In presenting the award, Kristina McNitt, president of OFIC, said that Pyle “has been an outstanding and unique partner who has been tireless in her advocacy — not just on issues, but also in admonitions to all of us working in natural resources to work together and stay together. She has done so much to unite agriculture and forestry — and not allowed any one of our immediate interests to forsake the greater partnership.”
As a lobbyist, Pyle was instrumental in the passage of Oregon’s Right-to-Farm and Forest law and Integrated Pest Management bills. She and “her army of grass roots” were also critical in passing the local pesticide pre-emption bill in a 1995 special session and the seed pre-emption bill passed in the special session earlier this month.
In the early 1970s, Pyle became actively involved in politics. With twin babies — one on each hip, she cut her “political teeth” in Idaho, campaigning door-to-door for Steve Symms. Symms won a congressional seat and Pyle was asked to join his staff.
After moving to Oregon in the late 1970s, she was hired by OFS as a temporary worker to organize the defeat of a statewide ballot measure and two Lincoln County measures that would have banned the aerial and roadside application of phoenoxy herbicides. The measure for the statewide ban never made it to the ballot because proponents were unable to gather enough signatures. The two Lincoln County measures were soundly defeated. The OFS Board of Directors then offered her a full-time job and she has been the director of grass roots for the organization ever since.
Pyle resides in Albany with her husband, Ken. They have six grown children and 16 grandchildren.
Oregonians for Food and Shelter is a non-profit coalition to promote the efficient production of quality food and fiber while protecting human health, personal property and the environment, through the integrated, responsible use of pest management products, soil nutrients and biotechnology.