Josie CranfillMay 11, 2023 Uncategorized

AATCC Sections are the heart and soul of the Association. In order to remain in good standing, sections must hold periodic elections to ensure proper representation of their members. The Northwest Section is holding the annual election digitally this year for member convenience.

To learn more about the candidates, read the bios below, then vote using the link provided.

Interested in getting more involved with the section? Once you vote, please put your contact information in the last option. This contact information will be processed by AATCC staff and will not be associated with your ballot, so your votes will remain anonymous.

Vote for the 2023 officers here:



Shannon graduated from Oregon State University with a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Merchandise Management. She has worked for Pendleton Woolen Mills, and as store manager for The Limited Stores. She worked for Nike for 18 years holding a variety of apparel management roles — Vendor Manager, Production; Materials Integrity Manager, Quality Standards, Operations and Material Innovation. Currently, she is working for Columbia Sportswear Company as a Principle Material Researcher focusing on Material Integrity (Quality, Testing and Performance). Shannon has been involved in AATCC throughout her career and most recently as the Northwest Chapter President.



Susan Sokolowski, PhD, has more than 30 years of performance sporting goods experience, working cross-functionally between footwear, apparel and equipment in creative and strategic roles. Her work is holistic in nature, where consideration of the athlete’s body form, performance, materials and styling are addressed to develop game-changing innovative solutions. She is specifically focused on issues surrounding design of products for women, children, and adaptive athletes. Susan has been internationally recognized for achievements in design innovation from the National Academy of Inventors, Nike, The United States Olympic Committee, Vogue Magazine, Fast Company, Sports Illustrated, the New York Times, Design Museum London, and Volvo. She holds over 45 U.S. patents and 65 foreign patents. Susan is a graduate of the University of Minnesota (PhD), Cornell University (MA) and the Fashion Institute of Technology (BFA). She is currently a Professor of Product Design and the Founding Director of the Sports Product Design MS Program at the University of Oregon. She also owns a boutique consultancy that focuses on athlete/user insights, sizing/fit and product innovation.


SUSAN MATTER (Membership Chair)

Susan has been an AATCC member since 1991 supporting AATCC at the national level in such roles as Secretary or Chair of several different research advisory committees, Western Section Board Member; and locally as the Chair and Membership Chair of the AATCC Northwest Section. She is interested in serving as the Membership Chair for the coming term. If elected, she will work with the section leadership to increase the membership, especially among students in our local universities and colleges by offering informal education programs and contacts within the textile and apparel industry. She strongly believes AATCC members have a responsibility to pass on their knowledge and experience to the next generation of textile and apparel professionals.
Susan holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Textiles from the University of California at Davis and has worked in retail product development for over 30 years. She is currently Product Integrity Manager for SanMar located in Issaquah, Washington.



Kham studied Biomedical Engineering with emphasis on Electronics and Molecular Biology. He continued gaining work experience at several labs in the medical sciences, then built upon his experiences at the textile materials testing lab at Nike. This is not the conventional path to the apparel industry, but highlights the many paths our careers may take. Kham has done just about every tests found in textiles labs. He thrives when given the opportunity to learn first hand and build upon foundational data and knowledge. Kham has done so for over two decades starting in supportive roles and into primary scientist roles, or just about all the possible roles in a textile materials lab. Today Kham is still with Nike as more of a project portfolio manager, mentoring and supporting the next generation of textile materials scientists and investigators.
You may find Kham involved with standards organizations such as ASTM and AATCC, keeping a pulse on the industry.


NANCY PEBENITO (Program Chair)

Nancy became involved in AATCC in 1989 after moving to New England. She was Membership Chair in the New England Section and became involved in national technical committees, serving as Chair and Secretary of several. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Textile & Clothing from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo. Since graduating, she spent the majority of her career with apparel performance and fashion retailers and manufacturers in quality and testing management at companies such as Patagonia, Talbots, and Nike. Nancy is currently working as an apparel and materials consultant providing technical expertise to small start-ups and large companies. In 2005, she successfully petitioned AATCC to create the Northwest Section to encourage involvement, networking and educational experiences for industry professionals. She has served as the NW Section as Chair, Membership Chair and Program Chair for the Portland area and looks forward.


Jo Anne (Jo) Surerus received a Bachelor of Science in Textile Science and a Masters in Apparel, Interiors and Merchandising from Oregon State University. She is currently a Product Integrity Analyst for all divisions at Pendleton Woolen Mills which includes responsibilities for vendor testing and compliance. She enjoys her role in product development for Pendleton Mill Fabrics and troubleshooting possible quality issues in the product development stage as well. In her free time Jo enjoys hikes and walks in the local area and spending time with her grand dogs. Her predecessors had a sense of humor when they arrived in Canada in the 1700’s, spelling the last name as a palindrome so that it takes 2 or 3 repetitions for anyone else to spell or pronounce it.



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