Board of Directors, Advisory Members, and Staff
Q Center Board of Directors
Working in collaboration with executive staff and community-based committees, the board of directors oversees and has ultimate responsibility for the general management, strategic direction, and financial affairs of Q Center. Board meetings are held monthly, and each board member commits to three or more weekly hours of additional volunteer service. Contact members of the board at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Apply to join the board of directors: Q Center is committed to developing and maintaining a socially diverse and representative leadership team. We encourage applications from community members who are directly impacted by Q Center’s programming and services, and who are dedicated to promoting intersectional justice, resiliency, and connection in Portland’s LGBTQ communities. Download the Board Application Packet here to learn more about volunteering for the Q Center board of directors.
Q Center financials: As part of our commitment to inclusion, community accountability and transparency we want to make it easier to find our past financials as well as our annual report. You can find our 2014 Q Center 990 here and our past 990s on GuideStar and lastly our most recent annual report can be found here: Q Center Annual Report.
Meet the Board of Directors
Karen is treasurer for Q Center’s board of directors, chairing the board’s finance subcommittee. She has been an obvious lesbian her entire life and is now of social security age. Pro LGBT legislation and equality in the workplace have been her focus since the early 1970s. Karen has held a multitude of jobs, from yard maintenance to taxi driving to waitress to janitor to being a realtor to teaching third grade through college. As a teacher she specialized in behaviorally and emotionally challenged students. Having benefited from using Q Center, she is on the board to add energy and another perspective in its continuous process of growth.
Leila is a member of the Q Center board of directors and co-director/youth coordinator for Sankofa Collective NW. Leila has been working with youth in Portland for the last 10 years. Leila also organizes with the Portland chapter of Black Lives Matter and is a passionate activist for social justice, youth empowerment, and the arts.
Alissa K. Jenkins has worked in advertising and marketing for 15 plus years. Her experience consist of strategic media planning and buying for fortune 500 companies such as Pepsi, NIKE, State Farm, Diageo as well as media companies ESPN. She moved to Portland in 2011 and currently heads up Media Strategy and Planning for NIKE Emerging Market Geographies. She is passionate about helping forge alliances across the spectrum of LGBTQ communities as well as potential supporters. Alissa joined the board in July of 2015 and has also been active in co-chairing the community engagement committee.
DARION DEMARTEZ JONES
Darion comes to Q Center’s board of directors with a wealth of nonprofit, social justice, and communications expertise. Darion has served on the communications team of Basic Rights Oregon, Oregon’s largest LGBTQ advocacy organization, and as the lead communications volunteer for Sankofa Collective Northwest (formerly PFLAG Portland Black Chapter), the nation’s first chapter of PFLAG dedicated specifically to the black community. Since moving to Portland, he has built community and fostered leadership development throughout Portland and the Northwest. Currently he serves as board co-chair for Sankofa Collective Northwest, hosts KBOO’s QTPOCTalk radio show, and is employed as a social media specialist for Meyer Memorial Trust.
Geeta is an actual user of Q Center’s services, programs, and facilities, and also a board member. She is a trans person of color, a visual artist, and an optimistic pragmatist. She’s held several leadership positions in the US military, where her skills in statistical analysis, quality assurance, project management, dispute resolution, and team building were highly valued assets. She is at Q Center to bring an unjaded perspective to discussions of inclusion, equity, rational or irrational optimism, and numerous opportunities for collaboration.
Athen is chair of Q Center’s board of directors and serves on the board’s finance and governance subcommittees. A white, queer, and hearing-disabled trans man, Athen was a founding member of Greater Portland Trans Unity and has been a peer facilitator in Q Center’s affinity groups program since 2009. He is a technical editor by trade and a community organizer, process facilitator, and conflict mediator at heart. Athen is passionate about creating an LGBTQ community center that promotes racial, gender, economic, and disability justice, and fosters an extended network of support for all sexual and gender minorities.
Kat describes herself as femme, woman, cis, parent, white, and Queer. Among other things, she’s been a program coordinator at a Pride and Women’s Resource Center in California and a board member with a free clinic in Connecticut. She graduated from Yale School of Nursing in 2016 as a nurse practitioner (NP) specializing in reproductive, sexual, and transgender health care. She then worked as an NP at an LGBTQI-inclusive reproductive clinic, and now works in oncology. Kat believes in the strength of community, whose power is collectively increased when people with privilege listen deeply, affirm and support those from oppressed identities, and educate their privileged peers about white/cis/masculine/class/ability/age privilege. Her pastimes include annoying loved ones by loudly pointing out oppressive messaging in TV and movies, research, staring at her handsome partner, politics, and being irritated when her son sets traps for her in Minecraft. Kat is Q Center’s board secretary.
Maxime comes to the Q Center board of directors with over six years of nonprofit management and LGBTQ rights experience. He currently works for SEIU Local 503 as a union organizer and is committed to motivating and advocating on behalf of hardworking American families. Between 2012 and 2014 he worked on both Washington and Oregon’s marriage equality campaigns, and in 2014 he also worked on behalf of Basic Rights Oregon’s Pro Equality PAC. In 2016 he worked for Clackamas County candidates Mark Meek and Janelle Bynum, both of whom won their respective seats in the Oregon House of Representatives. Maxime is committed to issues centered around poverty, racial inequality, and improving access to higher education for low-income and first-generation college students.
Q Center Advisory Members
The advisory committee extends the leadership capacity and wisdom of the Q Center board of directors. Members of the advisory committee are recruited based on their ability to contribute specialized and extensive knowledge, experience, or competencies to Q Center’s governance. Advisory members attend and actively participate in meetings of the board, but do not vote on resolutions.
Jackie Yerby serves on the Q Center Advisory Committee. She is currently on the board of Basic Rights Oregon and has previously served on the board of the Cascade AIDS Project including one year as the Board President. She is a straight, cisgender woman. She is proud to have been named a 2016 Queer Hero. She is the Executive Director for Bradley Angle, a non-profit that works with survivors of domestic violence to achieve safety and long-term stability. She has a passion for capacity building, leadership development, equity and social justice.
Joe LeBlanc is a Cajun genderqueer butch who believes in personal storytelling as a significant method for people to share experiences and solidify a better understanding about LGBTQ identities, issues, and concerns. He is the founder and board chair of BUTCHVoices, and longtime activist and advocate for gender and racial justice.
Joe is also a founder and former coordinator for Q Patrol PDX, Portland’s first community foot patrol. He currently works as the communications manager for Camp Fire Columbia. Joe was awarded the 2011 Pride In Action Award by Pride NW, and was recently named as one of the Queer Heroes for 2016 by GLAPN. He enjoys bow ties, road trips, coffee, taking way too many pictures, and a wide variety of music.
Originally from Texas, Debra has been actively engaged in Portland’s LGBTQ community for over 10 years. She served as board president for Pride Northwest from 2007 to 2015, helping to grow Portland’s annual Pride weekend festival and parade into a nationally recognized celebration. As president, Debra prioritized community engagement and inclusion. A strong believer in the power and strength of community, Debra has been active in state and local politics, working on local campaigns and supporting grassroots organizing efforts. In 2015, she was the recipient of a Queer Heroes NW award, honoring individuals whose risk, sacrifice, service, inspiration, or example have made them heroes to the LGBTQ community at large. In 2016, she received her Master of Public Administration, with a specialization in nonprofit management, from Portland State University.
Currently, Debra serves as part-time executive director for Pride Northwest and works full time in Student Services at Portland Community College, where (among other things) she mentors and supports LGBTQ students through the PCC Queer Resource Center. When not working, she spends time with her wife and adopted kitties in North Portland.
NEOLA YOUNG (Bio and Picture Forth Coming)
Q Center Staff
503-234-7837 ext 102
Q Center’s Program Manager, Raina Daniels is a queer pansexual dyke-identified person with a mixed white eastern european ethnic background. She’s a Rust Belt transplant from a working class background who has been “out” and engaged in youth advocacy and harm reduction health education since her early teens. Raina’s education from Antioch College was firmly rooted in youth empowerment, popular education, community governance, feminist and queer theory. Her years of work coordinating and promoting peer-to-peer support, suicide prevention, and hotline-delivered social service programs have shaped an extremely rewarding career which spans the disciplines of public health, direct service, communications, and tech. Raina is dedicated to bridging gaps between LGBTQ people and resources they need to survive and thrive!
503-234-7837 ext 101
Q Center’s Senior Community Program Manager, Susan Kocen holds a master’s degree concentration in Gerontology. Under her guidance and with her commitment to community building, Q Center’s *eRa* (Encouraging Respect for Aging) program has grown into a welcoming and respectful place where LGBT people in their later years can gather, participate, and find friendship and support. Susan has 15 years’ experience in the mental health field, and more than 10 years, locally and internationally, as a community facilitator and educator. She is passionate about ensuring that LGBT elders are seen, known, and appreciated, and that they are supported by networks formed and connections made.
503-234-7837 ext 100
Q Center’s Executive Co-Director, Development and Community Relations, Justin Pabalate is a queer person of color and a first-generation Filipino-American on his father’s side. Justin worked for 10 years in the credit union industry, where he gained deep knowledge of financial systems management and accountability. He deepened his commitment to community and nonprofit resource building while working as development manager at Basic Rights Oregon. Q Center was one of the first places that welcomed Justin to Portland. He is dedicated to seeing it thrive as an open, welcoming, and empowering community-driven home for everyone.
503-234-7837 ext 114
Q Center’s Executive Co-Director, Operations and Programs, Stacey Rice is a trans woman who joined the Q Center family in 2012. In addition to her experience as a small-business owner for a fast-paced, multidimensional business, Stacey has 10 years of relationship building and marketing experience in corporate sales and nonprofit environments. Stacey loves working at Q Center because she has seen first-hand how it changes people’s lives. A dedicated community builder, Stacey is committed to ensuring that Q Center serves Greater Portland’s LGBTQ community members who most need it.