Here’s just some of the stories we’ve turned up so far about the women who changed our world here in Southern Oregon. We’re collecting stories thanks to the Oregon Heritage Commission and editing the video interviews as quickly as we can. Meanwhile enjoy some of the earlier stories on working the land, collected thanks to OHC and NEH funding. These are all hosted at YouTube on the Stories of Southern Oregon channel. Subscribe and YouTube will alert you when we publish new stories. Stories are also featured on The Jefferson Exchange with Geoff Riley, second Tuesdays at 8a: The Stories of Southern Oregon on Jefferson Public Radio.

  • Sally Jones. Title IX at Southern Oregon University, 1974-1998.
  • Gail Patton. She Fought for Women’s Athletics. February 12, 2020.
  • Madeline Hill. Ashland’s first female mayoral candidate and founder of Mountain Meadows
  • Cathy Golden Shaw. Ashland’s first and to date only female mayor; she effected many of the environmental and sustainability changes that helped to shape Ashland’s future.
  • Carol Doty. One of Jackson County’s first female county commissioners.
  • LaVelle Foos. Artist, musician and mother earth to many women who found Ashland and her Oak Street sanctuary.
  • Rosemary Dunn Dalton. Who with her students and SOU Dean of Students, Mary Christlieb, founded Women in Transition at Southern Oregon University and later Dunn House.
  • Olive Streit. Olive was active in the 1970s and 1980s Rogue Valley Women’s Movement; she uses the phrase “click moments” to describe the ah ha of awakening consciousness.
  • Colleen Curran. Colleen at a young age, was a National Organization for Women activist and traveled to Illinois to help win ratification for the Equal Rights Amendment in that state. Here in Ashland she helped keep equal rights in the forefront of social activism.
  • Ruby Whalley. One of Ashland’s early female school administrators.
  • Tangren Alexander. She brought equity to the classroom and changed the teaching model from lecture to participatory learning. Tangren’s poetry and art are eternal.
  • Deltra Ferguson. Deltra mentored hundreds of women who found the Women’s Resource Center at Southern Oregon University in the mid-2000s.
  • Janie Stewart. She left the Takelma communes to go back to school at Southern Oregon University; her sociology degree has stood her well.

Many women have already passed and we’ll be recognizing them on these pages too.


The stories that follow have been collected though earlier work focusing on how those in Southern Oregon made their living by working the land. You’ll find agriculture, heritage, land use and more. These stories reflect place, this place that is Southern Oregon.

Dunbar Pears to Dunbar Farms: Diversified Agriculture Inside Medford’s Urban Growth Boundary
Stephen Nealon to Peter Sage: A Table Rock Century Farm
Living in Lola’s House. Farming the Blackford Place | Lola Blackford Saltsgaver, Central Point
Anne Manlove: 33 Years of Service to 4-H in Southern Oregon
Landscape Changed: Southern Oregon’s Agricultural Heritage | Rick Hilton
Planning for the Future of Agriculture in the Rogue Valley | October 5, 2016
Planning for the Future Of Food And Agriculture In The Rogue Valley
Future Farmers of America: Why Jeremy Kennedy Teaches Agriculture and FFA at Phoenix High School
Jim Miller, Crater High Future Farmers of America
Ron Bjork: Eagle Point Rancher, Oregon Farm Bureau Leader, and More
A Food Scientist Talks About the Rogue Valley | Vincent M. Smith, PhD
Feeding the Rogue Valley for Five Generations | The Bigham Family. The Bigham Farms.
Barking Moon Farm: Growing Food Out in the Applegate | Josh Cohen
A Culture of Cooperation: Maud Powell and the Siskiyou Sustainable Cooperative
Sharon Johnson | SOREC’s Healthy Aging Initiative
Fry Family Farm: Two Daughters Step Up
Rogue Valley Pears: David Sugar Has the Science
Stewardship: I Have a Lot to Live Up To | Jania Schiefer-Wolff
I’m a Berry Guy | Antonio Ruiz Grows Strawberries and Raspberries