John A. Nelson
Board Immediate Past President
John is a native Oregonian with family roots in the border region of Sweden and Norway. His education includes the University of Oregon’s School of Architecture followed by the University of Edinburgh, UK, where he received his MS in Urban and Regional Planning. After returning to Portland, John entered private consulting, providing services in land use planning, landscape architecture, engineering, and project management as owner of The Mitchell Nelson Group, Inc. John served his profession as National Trustee; State of Oregon Board of Examiners; and Adjunct Professor of Design, University of Oregon. Community service included private school and non-profit board memberships; outdoor leadership for the Boy Scouts; neighborhood associations; and, university alumni organizations. He served in the military and is a Vietnam Era Veteran. Nordic roots instilled an enthusiasm for all-season outdoor activities including downhill skiing, mountaineering, and sailing. John married Diana Lund (Swedish), of Astoria, after college. After forty years of marriage, she died in 2010. She shared an eagerness for adventure, summiting Mt St. Helen’s one year before the 1980 eruption. Together they raised two children (Andrew and Sarah) to appreciate, understand, and respect the natural environment. Adventures continue with Susan Raleigh and our combined families spread out from Seattle to Orlando. They enjoy their homes and friendships in Portland and Bend. John serves NNW on Executive Committee and Facilities Committee.