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Staff & Board


Jennine Smart

Executive Director 

Jennine Smart has worked in the healthcare and public health sector for over 25 years. Her experience is rooted in advocacy, social justice and anti-oppressive practices. Most recently she served as Equity and Inclusion Portfolio Manager at Health Share of Oregon, where her work included operationalizing equitable and inclusive practices and developing traditional health worker strategies to support workforce diversification, development, retention, and access.

Jennine holds a Master of Social Work and a Bachelor of Arts in Community Development. She is a strong advocate for collaborative, community-driven processes and strives to create inclusive systems that enable communities most impacted by systemic and structural oppression to thrive. Jennine believes that community health workers hold an instrumental role in addressing health inequities. While currently serving as the Traditional Health Worker (THW) Commission chair, she has been a Commissioner since 2014.  Laughter, connection, and time with her loved ones keep joy at her center. 

Deputy Director Currently Seeking

Click Here for More Information 

Community Programs

photo of Cammisha ManleyCammisha Manley

Program & Evaluation Manager 

Cammisha Manley brings a passion for community-led, social justice-driven public health programs that ignite needed change within health and social service systems. Having served as a mentor to undergraduate students, a staffing coordinator for nursing clinicians, and a case manager to individuals living with HIV, she understands the value of helping others navigate systems, advocate for their needs, and access much needed resources to live thriving and healthy lives. She is excited to support the CHW workforce and Community programs by building open, collaborative, and supportive partnerships. 

In 2020, Cammisha completed a dual-degree program earning a Master in Public Health and Master in Social Work with a mission to dismantle structural barriers to services and advocate for communities and individuals to hold influence and ownership over the systems they engage with. She is particularly interested in issues of reproductive justice, maternal and child health, mental health challenges, houselessness, and culturally-responsive healthcare. She’s gained experience in community engagement, program evaluation, and organizational change while working OHSU’s Transgender Health Program, Trauma Informed Oregon, Providence Nursing Administration, and Cascade AIDs Project.

Outside of building a meaningful career, she enjoys biking around the city, hiking in the forest, listening to music, cuddling her cat, and spending time with friends and family. 

Ashley Bans

Program Coordinator

Ashley Bans is an Indo-Fijian born and raised in Oregon. She is a first generation graduate with a Bachelor of Science in Biology from Portland State University and with a Master of Public Health in Public Health Practice from OHSU-PSU School of Public Health. Ashley’s interest in the public health sector has grown over these past few years leading her to become Certified in Public Health through the National Board of Public Health Examiners. 

Before she began her academic journey, she knew she wanted to do something that would allow her to make a difference in healthcare. Her experiences of working as a Certified Nursing Assistant and as a Homecare Worker in the State of Oregon allowed Ashley to develop an understanding of the limitations that healthcare workers may face. She aspires to make a positive impact for those who are facing similar challenges in their role as a healthcare worker. 

As our new Program Coordinator, Ashley strives to make positive improvements for community health workers by fostering and maintaining strong relationships with collaborative partners and community health workers. When not working Ashley enjoys spending time with her fiancé and family and engaging in activities that promote well-being and self care.

Gabriel Mariano Pendas 

Director of Community Engagement & Strategy

Gabriel Mariano Pendas is a seasoned community organizer, social movement strategist, and popular educator, with over two decades of experience in social justice. Born to Cuban refugee parents in Queens, New York, and raised in Miami, Florida, Gabriel's values of love, empathy, and kindness stem from his upbringing. He believes in the extraordinary potential of individuals and the importance of those affected by issues leading their solutions.

In his career, Gabriel has made significant contributions to social equity and justice. He led the United States Student Association, played a key role in unionizing Miami Beach security guards, and organized tenant associations in the Bronx. He co-founded the Dream Defenders in Florida, responding to Trayvon Martin's death, and has been instrumental in advocating for juvenile justice in Polk County, Florida. His work includes contributions to community-led crime prevention in South Los Angeles and repealing an unjust gang injunction law in San Diego County. Gabriel is also committed to fair wealth distribution in the cannabis industry, helping to found the Minority Cannabis Business Association,  and supporting migrant workers in Hillsboro, OR in their fight for health equity. 

Additionally, Gabriel has led organizing nationwide training, employing popular education methods to teach effective activism. He developed curriculum at the Santa Fe Institute to teach complexity science outside academia and collaborated with OHSU to create a Spanish-first community organizing curriculum. He is currently teaching a course for OHSU’s family medicine residents on community organizing. 

Gabriel is a devoted father, enjoying dinosaur-watching hikes with his son Rafa. He is also pursuing a Master of Science in Data Science at the University of Colorado Boulder, furthering his studies in complexity science and its relation to social movements. Gabriel's life exemplifies the impact of dedication, empathy, and relentless pursuit of justice.

Workforce Development Department 

Sarah Husain

Director of Workforce Development

Sarah Husain brings 20 years of experience as a BIPOC & LGBTQ+ identified doula/midwife, non-profit leader, community health educator, activist and visionary. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Women & Gender Studies & Economics with a Minor in Social & Ethnic Relations from UC Davis; and a Master’s Degree in Ethnic Studies from the San Francisco State University.   

She strives to cultivate space for justice, diversity, equity, inclusion, access, and empowerment. As a visionary, she seeks empowerment of and centers the experience, histories, and practices of BIPOC and LGBTQ+ communities within community health.

Sarah is committed to the development of specialized and responsive programs for community health workers as they advocate to shift, center, heal, and empower the perspective, practices, and knowledge of Black and Brown communities within community health.

Nora Maybury

Workforce Development Coordinator

Nora Maybury enjoys working at the intersection of her passions for accessible education and equitable healthcare. She believes the strongest communities are built on respect, compassion, and authentic open-mindedness. Nora understands the vital role that Community Health Workers play in advancing public health through promoting these values, and is grateful for the opportunity to continue empowering this workforce. 

Before joining ORCHWA, Nora produced specialty training modules for CHWs across the state of North Carolina, where she gained a deep appreciation for continuing education within healthcare. Nora’s background in nonprofit development has informed her understanding of systemic barriers to health, while her work mitigating Covid-19 on her university’s campus allowed her to put this knowledge and experience into practice. 

Originally from outside Boston, MA, Nora recently moved back to Portland from western North Carolina. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in French Studies with a minor in Management. In her free time she enjoys playing soccer, learning new languages, hiking with her chihuahua Teddy Bear, and creating art.

CHW Community Network (2CN)

Rashae Burns

Program Manager 

Rashae Burns has worked in healthcare and community wellness for over 23 years. She has vast experience in direct patient care, community advocacy and organizing, organizational and leadership development, and championing wellness through self-care. Most recently she served as the Home Gardens Director with Growing Gardens, partnering with health systems and advocating for gardening as a healthcare intervention to address social determinants of health with a culturally nourishing focus. She became a Certified Community Health Worker in 2023 to join her passion for community health and wellness with a community organizing lens.

Rashae has a degree as a Medical Assistant and is a certified Phlebotomist and studied Healthcare Administration at Concordia University. As a 4th generation Oregonian and native Portlander, she is deeply rooted in the community. With her lived experience, she advocates for equitable, inclusive, and culturally relevant health services that go beyond the clinical setting. Rashae has been a Founding Board member of Equitable Giving Circle since 2019, promoting and uplifting joy and healing for Black and Brown communities. She is a trained expert food preserver with OSU and enjoys practicing herbalism.  Family, friends, gardening, and adventure are the simple things that spark joy for her.

Board of Directors

photo of Adriana RodriguezAdriana Rodriguez
Board Chair

Adriana Rodriquez was born in Mexico City and raised in Washington County. She is bilingual (English/Spanish) and was trained as a medical assistant a few years later and had the privilege to be trained as a parish health promoter in 2006 . Through this work she had the blessing of sharing and learning with her community, finding   information and services, as well as seeing them bloom into individuals who feel that they can do what they didn't think they could. Seeing the glow in their eyes once they become empowered is what motivated her to pursue her bachelors degree in Community Health at Portland State University.

Her desire to continue to contribute to the Community Health Worker profession which is what led her to join the ORCHWA Board of Directors in 2011.  She enjoys learning ways to continue to serve her community and spending time with her friends and family in her free time.

photo of Dr. Julio MaldonadoDr. Julio Maldonado

Vice Chair

Julio Maldonado has more than 23 years of public health and social services experience for Multnomah County in areas of community health work, program management and grant implementation, coalition coordination, case management, and health education. Outside the health department, he spent 15 years working for Kaiser Permanente as a health educator in the area of childbirth education, diabetes self -management, wellness prevention, webinar facilitator, and marketing. Before moving to the United States, he worked as a physician, and health administration for the Nicaraguan ministry of health that included the administration of health services to a rural population of 10,000 community members, and director of a 32 beds hospital, and a health center.

Affiliations: ORCHWA, and CAPPA (Childbirth and Postpartum Professional Association).

Workgroups or other Boards or Committees in which you are active: active: Senior Case Manager at Bienestar de la Familia with Multnomah County.

Skills and Experience: Experience: Certified Childbirth Educator, Health Promotion, Chronic Diseases Self-Management, trainer/facilitator specifically diabetes, heart health, stress, human sexuality and oral health. Field services mentor for the SSCBT home visiting program.

photo of Maria TafollaMaria Tafolla


Maria Tafolla is the Director of Community Health at Health Share of Oregon to which she brings over 15 years of experience in community health, advancing health equity, leading innovative programs and departments, and implementing EDI practices that center member and community voice. She has contributed to the successful expansion of community driven initiatives and efforts such as community health worker programs, food insecurity initiatives and language access policies.

Maria is passionate about building authentic relationships, centering values in demonstrated actions and amplifying community and member voice to drive systems change. Maria is a community health worker and skilled facilitator. Maria is a founding Board Member of the Oregon Community Health Worker Association and currently serves as the Board Secretary.

Affiliations: Binational Health Week- Committee Chair 2013 to 2015; SGK Latina Initiative Board Member; OHSU- Latino Outreach Committee Member

Skills and Experience: CHW 60hr training 2012; Motivational Interview; Popular Education; Health Literacy; Community Engagement; Health Education; CHW Supervisor; Program Development; Program Management; Community Outreach; Bilingual-Bicultural

photo of Maria SanchezMaria Sánchez

Region 1 Chair (Hood River/Dalles)

María Antonia (Toña) Sánchez has been a Community Health Worker (CHW) in the Mid-Columbia since 1988.  Prior to that, when she arrived in the United States, she served her community by volunteering to help others access health and social services.  She has worked at Nuestra Comunidad Sana as a CHW in work such as breast cancer screening promotion, popular education trainer, family garden promoter, and as the Co-Facilitator for a domestic violence perpetrators program.   She also works as La Clínica’s Women’s Health Promotora, conducting outreach, education and assisting with screening access for Hispanic women in our service area. She is a highly respected member of the Latino community as well as a nationally recognized CHW.

Job Title: Community Health Worker

Affiliations: THW Commission; Spectators; Mission Outreach Community Health Advisors - MOCHA

Skills and Experience: Toña has served communities for her entire life including health promotion, and advocacy. Upon her arrival to the US she began working as a volunteer CHW and soon after became one of the first ever paid CHW in the Nation. Toña has also served on several advisory committees as well as boards around the region. Toña’s possesses experiential leadership skills as well as leadership development skills. Additionally Toña possesses compassion, empathy and passion for her work in conducting outreach to provide health education.

photo of Therese LuganoTherese Lugano

Region 5 Chair (Tri-County)

Therese Lugano has been a Community Health Worker since 2012. Swahili, French, and English. Ms. Lugano is a native of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and she grew up in a multilingual environment. Ms. Lugano immigrated to the United States 20 Years ago. As a former legislator in her home country, she brought with her a love of advocating and empowering her community members. Her extensive experience includes working closely with leadership in organizing grassroots for the underserved people of color, creating coalitions to strengthen those communities and creating specific grass roots for specific purposes such as empowering women, fighting health disparities, social determinants, social injustice .

Ms. Lugano has a Bachelor’s degree in Community Development from PSU. Since 2012 Therese has been certified as a Community Health Worker and is passionate about advocacy work, social justice, equity and helping her community to gain equitable health and resources.

When time allows, Therese enjoys traveling in and out of the country, mingling with friends and spending time cooking for her grandson and playing with him.

Job Title: Community Health Worker Specialist

Affiliations: ORCHWA; African Family Holistic Health Organization (AFHHO), Togo Core, African Women Coalition (AWC), Unite Congolese community of Oregon, Advisory Steering Committee of Park and Recreation (city); Adoption and Children Protection Advisor Board (DHS); Member of African Advocacy Council

Skills and Experience: Legislative member in Congo more than 10 Years; Co-founder and Board president of the Right of single women in Africa; Manager of stores and motels business in Congo; Assistant to the manager of a foster home for adult; Certified Nurse Assistant for more than 12 years; Community Organizer in Oregon until now

photo of Dr. Zeenia JunkeerDr. Zeenia Junkeer

Chair for Policy & Advocacy 


Zeenia Junkeer was born in Colombo Sri Lanka and raised in Beaverton, Oregon. Trained as a naturopathic physician, Zeenia has combined her work in social and racial justice advocacy with her training as a physician to work towards equitable health outcomes that center healing through traditional ways of knowing. A double Sagittarius and an avid seeker of the sun, you’ll find Zeenia near water whenever possible.

Affiliations: Executive Director of Mount Baker Foundation, North Sound ACH, Oregon Health Equity Alliance, Adjunct faculty, National College of Naturopathic Medicine; contract OHEA CHIP, Urban League of Portland; Director/Co-Founder, Naturopaths Without Borders (NWB)

Workgroups: Healing Hurt People advisory group member, State Emergency Registry of Volunteers in Oregon (SERV-OR) advisory group member, SVP Strategy Team

Other Boards or Committees in which you are active: Breastfeeding Coalition of Oregon, Oregon Women’s Campaign School.

Region 2 Chair: open

Region 3 Chair: open

Region 4 Chair: open

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