Lisha Shrestha- Executive Director
Lisha Shrestha brings 13 years of local and international experience to the work. She has previously worked at IRCO, the City of Portland New Portlander Program, and Elders in Action. At present, she is also pursuing her doctoral degree at Portland State University. Her involvement with the diverse community in Portland brought her recognition in the form of the PSU President’s Diversity Award in 2015 and Community Leader of the Year Spirit of Portland Award in 2017. She is passionate about transforming needs of individuals and communities into opportunities for economic prosperity.
Manuel Suarez Pallas-Program Coordinator
Manuel was born and raised in the southern Mexican state of Tabasco, in 2018 he moved to Portland Oregon to attend Portland State University. Manuel graduated with a degree in Community Development in 2022. He is passionate about communities, making spaces more equitable, and creating positive experiences using elements of the public realm. Manuel has gained experience working with organizations locally and at an international level. In his free time, Manuel enjoys watching movies, hiking, and soccer.
Lorena Mora-Community Projects Specialist & Latinx Community Liaison
Lorena lived in Mexico for 3 years and moved back to the U.S in 2012 and has been living in Portland ever since. She graduated from Reynolds High School and is currently a junior at Portland State University. She is pursuing a Bachelor's degree in Community Development because she is passionate about being involved in the community and providing the support and inclusion that not many minority communities receive. During her free time she likes to go shopping, go to coffee shops, hang out with friends and go to concerts.
Htoo Ray-Rent Assistance Specialist
Htoo Ray was born and raised in a Thai refugee camp before moving to Portland, Oregon with her family in 2011. She is currently pursuing her bachelor's degree in Asian Studies at Lewis and Clark College. In her spare time, she enjoys watching drama series, hiking, and taking pictures.
Community/Business Outreach Liaisons
Mohammad Khalid- QuickBook Specialist & Iraqi Community Liaison
Mohammad Khalid is a first-generation immigrant and a citizen of the United States. He studies accounting at Portland State University. His number one goal is to help and support the Iraqi community in Oregon. In his spare time, Mohammad loves to cook and to play soccer
Khanh Le -Vietnamese Community Liaison
Khanh Le immigrated to the U.S. from Vietnam, and she has become a naturalized citizen of the United States in 2019. Currently she is completing her bachelor’s degree in Applied Linguistics, along with the Teaching English as a Second Language certificate, and Global Studies certificate at Portland State University. Khanh wants to give back to her community and continue dedicating herself to the work of bringing equity and inclusion to the immigrant and refugee communities in the land that she now calls home.
Htoo Say -Karen Cultural Liaison (Intern)
Htoo is a sophomore at Portland State University who graduate from centennial high school. Htoo is currently pursuing a degree in business marketing. In his free time, Htoo likes to hang out with friends and sketch.
Prabina Sunuwar -Nepali Cultural Liaison (Intern)
Prabina graduated from Centennial high school. She goes to PSU. She is currently pursing a bachelors degree in criminology. She loves listening to k-pop music. Her favorite group are Bts, Blackpink, Twice, Red velvet and many more. It’s uncountable. Prabina loves hanging out with friends. The only time she feels like herself is when she is around her friends.
Board Of Directors
Anne Downing - Board President
As the Board President, Anne brings a lifetime of experience in working with immigrant and small business communities. With her experience, Division Midway Alliance is forging a path toward to establish the organization as a forefront leader in assisting communities around Division Street.
Leslie Hickox - Treasurer
Leslie has been a college educator for 36 years in the fields of Health Education and Education. With the beginning of the Affordable Care Act in 2013, Leslie focused on serving people with the Federal Market Place and the Oregon Health Plan (Medicaid). She’s currently a Para Educator with Portland Public Schools and continuing to work with special education elementary students. She’s excited about how DMA is expanding outreach to the SE Portland immigrant and refugee business communities.
Layla Assem - Board Secretary
With years of experience as an activist, Layla brings to DMA her passion in supporting immigrant populations and small businesses through guiding Division Midway Alliance to become the model organization that others look towards too as an example of a Neighborhood Prosperity Initiative that brings positive growth
Breeanna Guardado- Board Member
Breeanna Guardado (Bree) is an Affordable Housing Professional in Portland, Oregon. She has years of experience ranging from onsite management, federal compliance monitoring, asset management, and assistance in housing development. Bree is currently working for Rose Community Development, a grassroots developer that focuses on the SE neighborhood. Bree also has experience working closely with Portland’s most vulnerable populations: homelessness, mental illness, and substance abuse. Bree is eager to use her strong communication skills, real estate knowledge, and compassion; to assist Division Midway Alliance to fulfill its mission.
Bill Bruce- Board Member
Bill Bruce is the Senior Program Manager of Raimore Construction. He is also one of the top assistants to Raimore co-founder and Owner. Even though he has been working with Raimore for about 4 years, his relationship with Raimore has spanned over 20 years. Currently, he oversees Division Transit Project and work closely with different stakeholders and partners in the area. He is very passionate about creating opportunities for small business owners and promote work of DBEs (Disadvantaged Business Enterprise).
Ronault (Polo) LS Catalani- Board Member
Polo is a West Coast and SE Asia activist-lawyer, a Senior Contributing Editor of The Asian Reporter, and a contributor to The Oregonian and Oregon Public Radio. He became a City Hall’s New Portlander Programs manager. He is currently a Managing Attorney in NWCommunities Counsel.