Michael DeMarco, Executive Director
Serving as the lead staffer since the inception of the Neighborhood Prosperity Initiative, Michael has been involved in community organizing on and around 42nd Avenue for the better part of seven years. Born in New York and raised in California, Michael has lived in Portland for ten years, after having lived and worked in a few different cities. His previous work experience is diverse, from furniture delivery to ranching, to youth education and social welfare programming. Michael holds a bachelor's degree in political science from Cal Poly Pomona, and a master's degree in community and regional planning from the University of British Columbia. He lives with his wife, Emily, and dog in Northeast Portland.
Laura Voss, Program Manager
Born in a small town about an hour north of Chicago, Laura came to Portland sight unseen in 2012 to pursue good beer, her personal search for Sasquatch, and a bachelor's degree in community development from Portland State University. Laura began with Our 42nd as an AmeriCorps VISTA back in 2014, and has since graduated with her master's of urban and regional planning. In her spare time, Laura takes an excessive number of photos of her cat and goes on outdoor adventures with her awesome husband Ryan. Her favorite color is mustard yellow, and she holds an unwavering love for avocados.
Jessica Jazdzewski, Program ManagerJessica's colorful childhood took place largely on her family's cattle farm & in the eclectic historic town of Lewisburg, West Virginia. She moved to Oregon in 2004 to pursue a Bachelor of Architecture with dual minors in Business Administration and Fine Art at the University of Oregon. After graduation, she spent three years living in Austin, Texas before returning to Portland with her husband, Stephen. Her work in the 42nd Ave district began in 2014 while serving as an AmeriCorps volunteer with Habitat for Humanity's Neighborhood Revitalization Initiative. In her spare time, she can usually be found throwing elaborate parties, making costumes, letterpress printing, and completing quests (currently she is trying to catch all of the Pokémon and travel to the last 11 states she hasn't been to.)
Theresia Munywoki, (com)motion Program Manager
Originally from Texas with family from Kenya, Theresia is excited to take part in developing and managing (com)motion- the brand new multi-use movement studio on 42nd Avenue. With a long standing history of practicing and performing African dance and a more recent history of practicing and teaching yoga, she has developed a deep appreciation for physical movement and expression. Since moving to Portland almost 3 years ago, she has found herself spending most of her time in the vicinity of 42nd Avenue - working at Miss Zumstein, Red Sauce Pizza, and the Side Yard Farm. She is delighted to be managing this project as it is a wonderful way to bring movement arts to the Cully neighborhood and engage the community in connecting through movement.