Central Point, OR – Board member and longtime southern Oregon resident Jeff Rhoden passed away on August 4th from COVID19. Truly a shock and saddening to all that knew him within the Dogs for Better Lives’ (DBL) family, including staff, Board of Directors, and volunteers, among others.
“He brought a level of empathy, love and wisdom to Dogs for Better Lives that was respected and cherished by all…….as well as a good laugh on a daily basis. He will be missed, but never forgotten,” shared Board Secretary, Matt Dunbar.
In honoring Jeff Rhoden’s commitment and compassionate support for DBL, leadership and the board of directors have decided to name one of the (west side) running yards at the North Kennel, in Jeff’s honor. A permanent plaque will be placed on the chain link fence, to include his name and photo.
“Jeff was a vital part of the DBL Board of Directors and always a pleasure to work with, stated Board Chairman David Hollingsworth. “He was also very involved in our local Southern Oregon community, lending a hand to those in need and having a tremendous positive impact on the community. He will be greatly missed by so many and our thoughts are with his family during this difficult time.”
Jeff had been serving on DBL’s national board of directors since 2019, as well as actively participating on the board’s operation committee and development & marketing committee.
“The DBL board and staff are still trying to process this news, an obvious shock to those of us that knew him, stated CEO Bryan Williams. “Jeff’s contributions at the board level were truly valued, along with his witty sense of humor, compassion for others, and insightfulness on key discussion topics. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family at this time.”
Jeff was raised in the Rogue Valley, graduated from Ashland High School, and went on to earn his BA in Business Administration/Marketing from Southern Oregon University (SOSC at the time) in 1994.
Jeff started his business career working as the office manager for a small Southern Oregon office furniture manufacturer, Muvag Trading Company, putting his education to use immediately after graduation. About one year later he departed Muvag to team up with longtime friend, Scott Hansen, in his newly formed telecommunications brokerage, GCW Communication Consultants, LLC. Jeff and Scott proved to have a strong working relationship and continued building GCW even when Jeff lived in Corvallis, Oregon for a period of three years while his wife DeAnna attended Oregon State University’s College of Pharmacy.
While living in Corvallis, Jeff continued to expand his knowledge of sales, marketing and technology while working for Pacific Coast Publishing and for Arch Wireless.
Upon returning to Medford, OR in 1998, Jeff and Scott were again in full force. GCW had expanded at this point to encompass a full suite of telecom products for their customers and was continuing to grow. In 2000 they accepted positions with Rio Communications (later known as Rio Networks) a completive local exchange carrier (CLEC) and Jeff become the regional sales manager of what was at that time one of the first statewide facilities based private phone companies in Oregon.
After nearly a 3-year stint with Rio, Jeff and Scott joined together in 2003 with longtime friend and NFL veteran Chad Cota to form Prime Time Ventures, LLC and purchased InfoStructure, a longstanding and reputable ISP in Southern Oregon and began its transformation into a telephone service provider or CLEC. Jeff still maintains GCW and some of its agent channel activities, but his primary focus is building InfoStructure, its client base and service offerings which now include traditional Local & Long-distance phone service, Web Conferencing, Conference Calling, Business VoIP and SIP Trunking. InfoStructure also provides business Internet services like DSL, Cable Modem, T-1, DS3, Fiber, Ethernet over Copper, Private Line, MPLS, Web Hosting and Email.
Today InfoStructure has grown into a flourishing telecom and internet service provider and in July of 2013 completed the acquisition of Rio Networks – the same company which inspired its endeavor into the telecom industry. Serving thousands of customers throughout Oregon as well as across the US, the company has grown steadily and profitably, even through economic downturns, to become the reputable telecommunications enterprise that it is known as today.
Jeff had also partnered with Scott and Chad in other endeavors – most recently the drive-thru specialty coffee business, where together they own and operate The Human Bean of Reno with two successful locations in Reno, NV. Jeff and Chad bought out Scott’s Human Bean shares at the end of 2017 and are currently building two new locations – one in Reno and one in Sparks, NV. Plans are currently in place to build an additional 4 locations in and around Reno over the next 3 years.
Through perseverance and dedication with ample doses of integrity and faith, Jeff had accomplished a high level of success in business and yet had the drive and ability to not only continue in that success but strive for more.
Jeff was dedicated to community support projects and had invested his personal and company resources toward those efforts as often as possible. Over the years he had donated time and money to projects and organizations such as Living Waters Church, Boy Scouts of America, Rotary International, CASA, Compassion International, Fellowship of Christian Athletes, Crater Foundation, Red Cross, Kids Unlimited, Hearts with a Mission, Mobility Unlimited, Sparrow Clubs, Dogs for Better Lives, and many more.
Jeff was a long time Chamber member and served two terms on the Medford Chamber Board. He had been a member of or served on boards for other local business organizations as well including Sothern Oregon Regional Economic Development, Northwest Telecom Association, Talent Chamber, Rogue Nexus, Southern Oregon High Performance Enterprise Consortium (SOHPEC), and Central Point Rotary.
Jeff had recently celebrated his 49th birthday on July 24th and is survived by his wife DeAnna and their four children.