As Tillamook’s communications and member relations coordinator, Chandra Allen is focused on the needs of the cooperative’s membership, as well as preserving and telling the Tillamook story.
Chandra loves working with the farmer-owners of the Tillamook County Creamery Association (TCCA), and learning from them about dairying. “I have so much respect for what they do,” she says. “I love to get out on the farms and talk to the farmers and hear their stories.”
She produces a monthly newsletter for the farmer-owners, as well as their annual report. Her job also includes managing the Young Cooperators (YCs) program, which prepares younger or future farmers to take on the role of owning and managing their own farms and the cooperative.
“Being a farmer isn’t just about managing your cows,” Chandra says, and the YCs program provides training on a variety of topics, from soil samples to financial statements and everything in between. The YCs also attend national conferences and events to understand the broader dairy industry.
Chandra is also caretaker of Tillamook’s historical archives, which include 3,279 photos and objects as well as numerous paper records. From butter churns to cheese wheel slicers, from photos of our facilities and employees to the letters written to establish Tillamook’s first advertising program, the archives are a treasure trove of Tillamook history. “It’s fun to see how people lived, how they worked, what they wore, and how they spoke,” Chandra says.
Outside work, Chandra enjoys the lifestyle of a small coastal town, and she gives back to her community through leadership on the Tillamook County United Way board. She’s an avid Oregon Ducks fan, and football weekends in Eugene are a family tradition during football season.
“I’m proud to say I work for Tillamook — I love the products and I love the people who make them,” Chandra says. “I can’t say I make the cheese — that would be awesome — but I love having a role in it.”