We’re happy to announce that the Hunger-Free Oregon team is growing! As an organization, we greatly value the talents and diverse perspectives of our staff, and we believe each employee contributes directly to our success. While every team member brings their unique experience and skillset to a different area of our organization, we all share a common passion for our mission: to build an Oregon where everyone is healthy and thriving, with access to affordable, nourishing, and culturally appropriate food.

We can’t wait to see what we accomplish together!

Mara Hussey – Grants & Appeals Lead

Mara brings more than five years of experience in nonprofit fundraising and administration. She is passionate about supporting the sustainability and growth of organizations working collaboratively and collectively toward social change. 

Originally from Washington D.C., Mara worked with several organizations in New Orleans operating at the intersection of food, hospitality, and social justice, before moving to Portland in 2020. She is a recent graduate of the Certificate in Nonprofit Fundraising course at Willamette Valley Development Officers (WVDO), and a firm believer in the power of organizational storytelling, community building, and community-centric fundraising principles.

When she’s not at work, you can find Mara making a mess in the kitchen or taking long walks with her partner and their dog.

Angelita Morillo – Policy Advocate

Angelita is passionate about local government and ensuring that policy makers are led by the community they serve, and not the other way around.

Angelita moved from Paraguay to the United States as a child, and her experiences growing up as an immigrant shaped and developed her interest in government and policy. She went on to study Political Science and Legal Studies, and worked in local government as Tribal Relations Policy Advisor and Constituent Services Specialist.

Ariana Organiz-Ruiz – Organizer, Community Food Justice

As a community and political organizer, Ariana is passionate about building people’s power from the ground up; educating communities on the political power they can harness to hold legislators accountable and make real policy wins happen. She has previously worked on health equity issues that impact Latinx communities on a daily basis by co-founding Raiz Oregon with Planned Parenthood Advocates of Oregon. Raiz is a grassroots community organizing program dedicated to serving Latinx communities by working on reproductive justice issues.

Ariana understands that access to food is critical to ensuring all Oregonians can lead healthy, safe, and empowered lives – no matter where they were born or what language they speak. She believes we must stand up against the systemic racism that has led to disparities in health outcomes. That is why she is so excited to mobilize advocates to fight for a hunger-free Oregon!

Jacki Ward Kehrwald – Communications Lead

Jacki has a passion for social justice, impactful design, and strategic thinking. She holds degrees in Anthropology and Gender Studies, and has spent over a decade in arts, nonprofits, and social justice spaces. She brings an intentional and community-centric approach to communications.

A Portland native, Jacki also enjoys hand-lettering, mini-farming, and circus arts. 

Are you interested in joining the Hunger-Free Oregon team? We’re currently hiring a Policy Advocate (Federal Child Nutrition Programs). Find the Policy Advocate job description and details here.