Meet Watershed's Team

PORTLAND

Rachel Sandstrom
Account Coordinator

Originally from San Diego and the surrounding southern California Areas, Rachel will sometimes slip and call it “the 5,” but she feels more like a misplaced Oregonian than a California girl. She came to Portland in 2007, a girl fresh out of high school and not quite 18, and fell in love with the city. She explored Portland through its coffee shops, restaurants, music, and theatre but still hadn’t finished school. So she moved to Corvallis not knowing anyone and finished up her BA in English from Oregon State University.

After writing for the Corvallis Advocate, working in several coffee shops, and volunteering at beer and wine events, she accepted an editorial internship from Portland Monthly Magazine and moved back to Portland. She excelled there, while re-learning Portland through its beer and wine, and was essentially poached to intern at Watershed Communications.

New to the world of Public Relations, Rachel hopes to learn all she can while working with professionals at the top of their field – her colleagues and superiors, and also Watershed’s talented clients. Boundlessly ambitious, Rachel hopes to absorb all the information Watershed has to offer, while applying her own focused work ethic and adding a little fun.

When she’s not working, you can likely find Rachel reading a book (fiction usually) at one of Portland’s many specialty coffee shops, taking or teaching a yoga class (vinyasa), or enjoying happy hour.

Melibea Sarant

Growing up in Portland on the serene slopes of Mt. Tabor, Melibea developed a thirst for knowledge that continues with her to this day. A strong desire to learn more compelled Melibea to move across the country and attend Haverford College just outside of Philadelphia, PA. While enrolled at Haverford, she jumped at the opportunity to study in Barcelona; an experience that left her with a profound appreciation for thoughtfully prepared cuisine, especially seafood. After four quick years, Melibea obtained a degree in cultural anthropology with a concentration in peace and conflict studies. Following her education, she remained in Philadelphia to manage a clothing store. The experience gave Melibea a razor-sharp focus and attention to detail, along with valuable project management and interpersonal skills.

While studying, working and living away from home helped Melibea grow, Portland beckoned. In early 2015, she returned to the City of Roses and joined the team at Watershed Communications. Her quick wit and superb ability to communicate help the agency operate like clockwork. Melibea loves that she’s been able to rediscover Portland through her work.

If Melibea is not testing out the menu at a new food joint, she can likely be found attending a local music fest or hiking one of the area’s many trails — a hobby she enjoys most with canine companions. A warmhearted team player with a knack for creative problem solving, Melibea is thrilled to help our clients achieve their goals in the years to come.

COLLABORATORS

Shelly Strom

Shelly was born and raised in Portland, Oregon and credits her unending pursuit finding and sharing great, authentic stories to curiosity that simply is insatiable. She started out in journalism and shifted to telling stories about Oregon’s food and wine about a decade ago. She also has experience crafting stories about health care and politics.

Shelly studied journalism and political science at University of Oregon. She resides in Washington State, splitting her time between Vancouver and the Olympic Peninsula.

Anna Cohen

A native Oregonian, Anna spent her early years surrounded by nature in an artistic and musical family in the Oregon countryside. Her family moved to Portland when she was eight years old to expand their exposure to ideas and perspectives, which became a life long trend.

As soon as Anna could sit responsibly at a sewing machine, her grandmother taught her how to sew and she began designing garments, which wildly expanded her imagination and ability to envision and create. She began making clothing for others as a teen, and at age 18 made a fateful trip to New York City and found her new home. She studied fashion design at the Fashion Institute of Technology, then attended Polimoda, FIT’s sister school in Florence, Italy, earing her BFA in International Fashion Design.

After learning to successfully navigate in the sea of New York City’s fast paced lifestyle, she was swept away by the deeply rooted energy of Italy; its culture around food, family, work and life. She steeped herself in this culture for four years, becoming fluent in Italian and working as a designer for some of the most treasured fashion houses in the world.

At this point, she realized a piece was missing for her. That intuitive voice and connection to nature as a child started to speak up. She began to explore concepts of sustainability and this led her to return to Oregon and start her namesake fashion line, successfully merging high-end fashion with sustainability. It was the right message at the right time and her work was covered by some of the top publications in the fashion world with covers of WWD and features in NY Times, spreads in Vogue, Elle and many more. She garnered awards and recognition from around the world for her work and was featured in books, television and film.

In 2008, as with many young businesses at the time, her company didn’t survive the recession. Though this was heartbreaking for her at the time, what came as a result was surprising and wonderful. Recognizing that much of her success was due to the visual translation and expression of her brand, she began advising companies in this capacity and this became deeply satisfying work. From branding elements, to products, to marketing and advertising, her role informs and represents the visual voice of the brand.

Anna loves being in nature, spending quality time with family and connecting with people. She’s been singing throughout her life and as a long time choir and board member of the Intergenerational Outreach Choirs, she sings with all her heart to bring life and healing to the women in prison, children in the hospital and elders in our community that this choir seeks to serve.