Meet The Team

Staff

Staff | Board

Our staff operate within a Staff Collective, non-hierarchical model. This means we have no executive director or inherent hierarchy within staff, and we use a process of collective decision-making and collaboration that engages norms for proactive communication and healthy, respectful conflict.

Anissa Pemberton

Anissa Pemberton

Grants & Operations Manager - they/them

Anissa Pemberton (they/them) returns to 350PDX after serving two years at the Coalition of Communities of Color as the Environmental Partnerships Manager (formerly the Portland Clean Energy Fund Coalition Coordinator). As a passionate climate justice organizer, they are excited to serve as the Grants and Operations Manager. Previously, they served at 350PDX as the Coalition Manager from 2018 - 2020. They are pursuing a graduate degree in marriage and family therapy, and are passionate about increasing work life balance in the climate justice movement and integrating healing justice practices. In their free time, you can find Anissa building community through dinner parties, urban hiking with friends, gardening with their partner, and cuddling with their dog, Roxie.

Brenna Bell

Brenna Bell

Forest Climate Manager - she/her

Raised on Muckleshoot Prairie in the shadow of Mt. Rainier, a land of both towering trees and expansive clearcuts, Brenna started advocating for forests in 1997. Her journey of advocacy took her up to tree sits, into lumber mills, across timber sales, though law school, to meetings, rallies, webinars and more . . . all with a focus of shifting forest management away from commodity production and towards ecological restoration. Along the way, she fell in love with dead trees, forest fires, and learned that Pacific NW forests are some of the best carbon sequestering ecosystems in the world. And learned that snow packs and glaciers are rapidly melting and, if we don’t change forest management, Oregon might start running out of summer water.

The more she learned about forests and climate change, the more Brenna‘s work shifted to focus on that intersection. In 2020, while staff attorney for Bark, Brenna helped launch the Pacific NW Forest Climate Alliance, bringing together over 60 groups across the NW to share resources and take action improving forest management to build climate resiliency and mitigate climate change. She’s thrilled to build capacity for 350PDX‘s Forest Defense Team as the Forest Climate Manager, and looks forward to changing both laws and culture to value Oregon’s forests for more than profit.

Along with loving forests, Brenna also loves long bike commutes, raising dairy goats, talking about death, figuring out how to share life with her intentional community, and being a mom to two awesome kids who are scared about climate change.

Cherice Bock

Cherice Bock

Climate Policy Manager - she/her

As the policy manager, Cherice Bock (she/her) leads city and state level advocacy, organizing to support policies that lead toward climate justice. Her career thus far has straddled the academy and the nonprofit world. With an MS and PhD in environmental studies and several years of experience in advocacy and organizing in Oregon, she brings both a commitment to relational organizing and a willingness to dive into policy details.

Cherice became committed to working on environmental and climate issues when the connections between colonialism, resource extraction, labor exploitation, and other systems of injustice became clear to her as she worked on peace and justice issues. A Quaker, social justice and peace activism has been part of her experience and tradition, and she recognized her own culpability and the connection between colonization and environmental issues when visiting the West Bank. Since then, Cherice dedicated her career to working toward justice while grounding this work in the soil, the water, and the interconnected relationships between all members of the earth community. Her commitment to a just transition includes advocating for policies that will be equitable, interrupt unjust systems, and create a flourishing society including all people and species. She does this work in part to help create a livable future for her two children.

Chris Palmer

Chris Palmer

Volunteer Manager - he/him

Chris is originally from the UK and moved to Portland in early 2018. He volunteered with the Portland Clean Energy Fund campaign before joining 350PDX as a staff member.

Chris is our Volunteer Manager, which involves bringing new volunteers into the movement, training and building volunteer leaders, helping implement our JEDI plan so our movement is equitable and accessible, and helping all our teams be effective movement building machines.

Previously Chris helped run a Scottish nonprofit, 2050 Climate Group, that supports millennials to take action on climate change. He also worked as a sustainability advisor to small businesses and ran a startup to encourage businesses to fly less.

Outside of work he helped set up the local hub of the Sunrise Movement, and enjoys playing music on his loop pedal.

Denise Lopez

Denise Lopez

Outreach and Organizing Manager - she/her

Growing up in the Portland area surrounded by so much natural beauty, Denise quickly realized she wanted to spend her career protecting the local environment. Hearing heartbreaking stories of climate emergencies like drought and loss of land from her Mexican-Indigenous family was the catalyst for her to start organizing communities to tackle climate justice. She feels fortunate to have worked in a wide variety of spaces in the last ten years from air quality policy & community science in Vietnam to environmental sociology research and advocacy training in Chicago with BIPOC youth.

Denise is driven by her core belief that collective action can spark profound change. She loves encouraging others to join, dream, and accomplish more together. She’s passionate about organizing in all types of spaces including BIPOC outdoor affinity groups in Portland and also volunteering at her neighborhood coffee shop. Outside of work, she loves eating delicious food, playing board games, spending time outdoors with friends, and chasing after her well-loved cats Atlas, Noona, and Newt.

Dineen O’Rourke

Dineen O’Rourke

Campaign Manager - she/her

Dineen dedicated her life to fighting for climate justice in her senior year of high school when Superstorm Sandy hit her community on Eastern Long Island and the looming threat of climate change suddenly became very urgent and personal. Since then, she‘s worked on local and regional campaigns that have defeated major fracked gas pipelines and other fossil fuel projects, as well as on national and international levels, working to elevate the voices of and solutions from young people at United Nations climate conferences. Since moving to Portland in 2017, Dineen has worked for the Oregon Sierra Club, as a Field Organizer on the Portland Clean Energy Fund campaign, and helped to start the Sunrise PDX hub.

Dineen is also a practicing birth and postpartum doula, and is deeply passionate about reproductive justice and birth justice, and making holistic birth support more accessible to all. She loves seeing live music, baking cakes, singing, spending time with her dog, and being outside. You can reach her at dineen@350pdx.org.

Irene Hess

Irene Hess

Communications Manager - she/her

Irene is a filmmaker and photographer whose work focuses on the beauty of nature and on environmental and civil rights movements. Irene grew up in New York City, and spent the best part of her summers in Puerto Rico, at the foothills of El Yunque rainforest.

Irene’s journey into storytelling began when she worked as a reporter in the Bronx and Manhattan. Her desire to work in natural history documentary eventually led her to the PBS series Nature, where she learned the art of producing and editing. From there, Irene began making her own short films and creating media for organizations like The World Science Festival.

In 2011, Irene embarked on a new chapter, moving to Portland, Oregon, her husband‘s hometown. Amidst the Pacific Northwest’s breathtaking scenery, Irene‘s experience as a mother has emerged as her most fulfilling endeavor yet. She also enjoys backpacking, hanging out with crows at the downtown roost, dancing, roaming forests, and walking along the Willamette River - her family by her side.

Katie Hutchinson

Katie Hutchinson

Community Engagement Manager - she/her

Katie began her path as a lifelong activist when she walked out of her seventh grade social studies class in protest of the War in Iraq. Through various professional, academic, and volunteer endeavors- an MFA in Creative Nonfiction, community radio DJ in Wisconsin, union organizer, Waldorf teacher, managing a fundraising campaign for an Indigenous-led development project- she centers storytelling, relationship-building, and radical change. Raised by a deeply spiritual, social justice-oriented single mother in Portland, she is grateful for a life full of opportunities to be a force for positive, biophilic action in the world.

As Community Engagement Manager, Katie warmly welcomes volunteers into the work of 350PDX, helping them find their niche in the movement for a just and livable planet, and empowers them to lead. She firmly believes that there is a place for everyone’s confluence of interests, skills, identity/ies, and passions in the journey of cultural and planetary healing, and is dedicated to centering equity and accessibility in this work.

Loves: being a mother, Studio Ghibli, rain, gummy candies, reading, magic, forests, music music music!, riding bikes, flowers, her cat Scarlett, being cozy at home with her family.

Does not love: temperatures above ~75 degree fahrenheit, capitalism, her severe allergy to eggplant.

Summer 2024 Interns

Staff | Board

Santiago Nolasco Galicia

Santiago Nolasco Galicia

Santiago Nolasco Galicia is a junior at the University of Portland studying Political Science/Economics/Spanish. Santiago hopes to do a lot of good work over the summer to help achieve climate justice here in his community. A local environmental issue he’s passionate about is the Critical Energy Infrastructure Hub which is located right across from his campus. Some of Santiago’s hobbies include: finding good coffee spots, reading, cooking, and baking.

Carys Johns

Carys Johns

Carys is a rising senior at Reed College pursuing a BA in International & Comparative Policy Studies with a concentration in Political Science. She has always been passionate about environmentalism due to her deep love of nature and the formative role the ocean had in her childhood. Carys’ collegiate study of Environmental Politics, Indigenous American History, Ecology, Labor History, Indigenous Land Rights, Water Politics, and International Human Rights Law developed her environmentalism to be intersectional, centering Indigenous environmental knowledge and focusing on environmental justice and equity. In her free time, Carys enjoys reading, hiking, and creating through a variety of artistic mediums.

Chris Johnston

Chris Johnston

Chris is a Linfield University graduate with a degree in Environmental Policy. He has worked as a fellow with Divest Oregon, helping to pass the COAL Act. He has also organized climate resiliency in faith communities, led a restoration project at his university, and worked on an environmental justice campaign against the Coffin Butte Landfill. Chris has also done a lot of work in urban farming for food and climate justice. Outside of work, he enjoys rock climbing (bouldering) and reading.

Matt Stevenson

Matt Stevenson

Matt grew up in Portland, where access to nature and the outdoors seeded a deep interest in justly transforming how we relate to each other and the land. Matt now attends Middlebury College in Vermont, pursuing a degree in environmental studies. Matt has previously organized with Sunrise Movement PDX and the PNW Forest Climate Alliance, and is excited to bring these experiences to 350PDX. When not organizing, Matt enjoys singing, drinking tea, and everything outside.

Izzy Garcia

Izzy Garcia

Izzy is a rising senior at the University of Portland, currently studying Environmental Science and Political Science. Through studying both these disciplines Izzy is able to be involved in her passion for climate justice, science-informed policy, and environmental conservation. Outside of being a climate activist, Izzy loves reading and collaging.

Board Members

Staff | Board

Interested in joining the board? See more info here.

Ahmed Gaya

Ahmed Gaya

Board Director - he/him

Ahmed Gaya has spent the past 15 years running campaigns for climate and social justice in the United States, Canada and Europe. In that time he helped found organizations like 350 Seattle and the Prison Ecology Project, built the largest and most diverse coalition in Washington State History with the Climate Alliance for Jobs and Clean Energy, and popularized the concept of the Green New Deal as the National Field Director for the Sunrise Movement. The child of an immigrant family from Pakistan, Ahmed explores the intersection of climate and immigrant experience as the Senior Strategist for Climate and Migration with the National Partnership for New Americans.

Allyse Heartwell

Allyse Heartwell

Board Director - she/her

Allyse was born and raised in Hawaii. Before landing in Portland in 2018, she spent over a decade in California, working at the intersection of climate organizing, sustainable agriculture, and local sustainable economies. She spent nearly six years at 350.org, the international organization with which 350PDX is affiliated, including two years on the leadership team as the organization’s Digital Director. In 2017, she quit her job to renegotiate her relationship with work and activism, and spent almost a year traveling around the world on trains, buses, and boats. Now she works as an independent consultant, putting her expertise in strategic digital campaigning and communications to work for mission-driven nonprofits in the climate and environmental space. In addition to climate justice, sustainable food & farming, and overland travel, she spends a lot of time thinking about how to make her dog happy and get to cool outdoorsy stuff by bike.

Evie Vermeer

Evie Vermeer

Board Treasurer - he/him

Evie was born and raised in Minneapolis. Growing up canoeing, skiing and playing hockey on the northern lakes inspired his passion for environmental conservation.
Before moving to Portland in 2016, Evie graduated from Whitman College with a degree in Economics-Environmental Studies.
In 2020, he left his job in forestry finance to focus on conservation and environmental justice work in Oregon and to pursue a graduate degree.
Evie is a master‘s candidate at the University of California, Santa Barbara’s Bren School of Environmental Science and Management, where he participates in the program’s Sustainable Forestry Fellowship program.
Evie is a member of 350PDX’s finance committee and forest defense team. In his spare time, he conducts research for a local nonprofit, tends to his many plants, and enjoys skiing, biking and hiking.

Devyn Powell

Devyn Powell

Board Chair - she/her

Devyn grew up in the Portland area, and moved back in 2020 after a long detour on the east coast. She is very glad to be home. She works as an energy policy analyst at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, where her research is focused on incorporating equity and environmental justice goals into clean energy policy, and is also a volunteer organizer with 350PDX’s Fossil Fuel Resistance team. Devyn has previously worked on clean energy policy analysis at Evergreen Action and Solar United Neighbors, and as a digital campaigner and strategist at 350.org and the Power Shift Network.
She has also earned a Master of Public Policy from Georgetown University and a B.A. in environmental policy from Tufts University. When she’s not trapped in front of a computer screen, Devyn is usually somewhere in the mountains of the Pacific Northwest with her dog, Lyra.

Mikaela Todd

Mikaela Todd

Board Director - she/her

Mikaela was born and raised in Southern California. She grew up hiking, camping, and experiencing local wildlife through Girl Scouts, developing an appreciation of nature from an early age. As a teenager, she made the decision to forever abstain from factory-farmed meat - reading and learning about food politics sparked a lifelong passion for environmental justice and equity.

Mikaela graduated from the University of California, Santa Cruz with a BA in literature and politics in 2013, and soon after moved to the Portland metro area, where she fell in love with kayaking, backpacking, and exploring the natural beauty of Oregon. She worked in hotel operations management for several years before earning her MBA from Portland State University in 2021. While at PSU, Mikaela led the business school’s B Impact program, advising local businesses on how to reach their sustainability goals and become certified B corporations.

Mikaela currently works as a senior accountant at Geffen Mesher, where she is an active member of the firm’s DEI committee. She is a foster parent, has three pets with her spouse, and values giving back to her community. She is excited to use her financial skills to aid the environmental justice movement through her work with 350 PDX.