Our Crew


John CoghlanOwner & Designer

After graduating with a degree in International Business, John spent eight years learning Spanish and pursuing social-focused businesses in areas dealing with systemic poverty. That journey led him to studying permaculture at the Bullock’s Homestead on Orcas Island with his wife in 2011.  In the summer of 2012 John completed an intensive course in edible forest gardening with Dave Jacke.

To continue his education in natural systems and wildlife processes, John moved to Vashon Island, where he puts a practical application to his studies in edible forest gardening, mushroom cultivation and integrated holistic landscape design. John’s main concern is designing and building gardens that people can use for food, pleasure and medicine. John enjoys soccer and bicycling.  He and his wife have two young daughters, who specialize in eating berries and digging holes in the garden.

Special expertise: Permaculture, Food Forests, and Edible landscape design.  Plant education. Spanish.


img_3467Julia Trippel

Julia’s first gardening experience was removing asphalt in her family’s backyard with other 10 year olds using croquet mallets found left out for trash on the street. She loved planting beans, carrots and tomatoes and watching them grow!

Her first landscaping job was on the grounds crew of the Scott Arboretum on the campus of Swarthmore College in Pennsylvania. After studying tropical ecology in Costa Rica, she wrote her undergraduate thesis on the ways in which indigenous methods of organic agriculture are more efficient than petroleum-based, colonizing/settler methods. With an MBA in sustainable business from Pinchot/Presidio, Julia is thrilled to bring all these passions together for HGO!


Otong Durahim

Otong (Oi) hails from West Java, Indonesia.  A graduate of Indonesia College of Art in Bandung, he spent over 10 years as a professional set designer and builder.  After moving to the states in 2007, his landscape design and building skills were inspired by the permaculture vision at the Heartwood Institute in Northern California. Since 2008, he has been creating functional beautiful structures independently in the Seattle area.  He now lives with his family on Vashon Island.



11393372_10152977838768517_4227464327262221163_o (1)Kelly Latta

Originally from the Southeast, Kelly has a passion for gardening, the arts, good food, wellness through plant medicine, and dogs. She’s new to permaculture and is so excited to learn more! After graduating from SCGSAH with a focus in silversmithing/secondary in sculpture, Kelly spent 9 years in Charleston, SC before journeying west to check out life in WA.

Passionate about preservation of happy soil microbiology, KnF farming methods, organic options, and continued practices that are sustainable and restorative of natural balance, she looks forward to contributing to an already amazing team. Kelly loves to paint, make jewelry, photograph nature, nerd out on horror, scifi and fantasy, romp with her dog Cosmo, and explore the mountains and coasts with her sweetheart.


FullSizeR1Devon Oropeza

Devon relocated from San Jose, CA to WA last year and brought a voracious appetite for plant knowledge with him! He takes classes whenever he can and in his spare time creates art, including comic and cartoon illustrations and zines with his equally talented wife. They and their sweet dog, Mac, love exploring Seattle and the surrounding areas and participating in community art events. Devon is passionate about quality work, continued education, and contributing positively to the world to create a better a place for all of us to live.





16836012_3636943840835_3556510908210358976_o (1)Mark Gerrity

Relocating to WA from the midwest, Mark has always enjoyed spending time in the woods and outdoors. This evolved into cultivating personal gardens and a love of plants. A creative team player with experience from preschool teaching to carpentry, he is always looking for new things to learn. A budding interest in permaculture made the alignment with HGO a great fit, and we’re so glad he joined our install team this summer!





Sarah Glass
After graduating from the University of Oregon with a B.A. in Art and Philosophy, Sarah became a big proponent of ecologically beneficial landscape design. She got into farming and gardening because she wanted to grow food and give back to the land, and although new to permaculture, she has plans to become certified and loves interacting with sustainablity designed spaces. A great teammate and a clear communicator, she’s regularly inspired by her gardener cohorts.