We forge collaborative relationships with the business community, non-profit organizations, and government. Rather than prescribe our own solutions, we listen to community leaders to determine where our business voices can be most helpful to their essential work.
Board of Directors
Mara Zepeda is the CEO and Co-Founder of Switchboard, a software and strategy company that partners with colleges, universities, and independent schools to make meaningful connections between students and alumni. She is the founding board chair of XXcelerate, a fund and educational program for Oregon women entrepreneurs. She’s also a co-founder of the Zebras Unite movement, which is building an ethical and inclusive startup culture.
She’s been recognized by Conscious Company as 30 world-changing women in conscious business; Portland Business Journal’s “40 Under 40” and Business Insider as one of the 20 hottest startups founded by women. An award-winning journalist, she previously reported for Planet Money, Marketplace, The Boston Globe and NPR as an economic reporter. She graduated with honors from Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism and Reed College with a degree in Russian.
Kristen Gallagher is an organizational strategies and learning designer. She is the founder and CEO of Edify, a learning strategy consultancy that solves people operations problems for growing companies. She has architected and delivered onboarding programs for companies bringing on just one person a quarter to 100+ people a quarter. Specializing in onboarding systems, manager development, and knowledge management, Gallagher delivers programs that are designed to evolve and scale with rapid changes. She brings over eight years of learning and development and business partnership experience to Edify. Prior to founding Edify, Kristen worked in nonprofit educational programming and museum education, both designing and teaching learning programs for children and adults.
Anna is the Founder and CEO of Avenue, a digital marketing agency that amplifies the impact that purpose-driver companies have in the world through results-led digital marketing. Prior to founding Avenue, Anna held a variety of executive leadership roles at regional digital and full-service agencies, her work spanning digital marketing leadership, agency operations, sales, account services, talent recruitment and mentorship.
She is passionate about having a meaningful impact on our community through volunteerism, and in addition to her work at BBPDX, she has served on the Statewide Board of Directors for SMART (Start Making A Reader Today), as the Engage Conference Director on the Board of Directors for SEMpdx (Search Engine Marketing Professionals of Portland), and the Board of Directors for the Cascade Academy Foundation. She is also a speaker and instructor for organizations such as the American Marketing Association, SEMpdx, ACT -W, Clark College and Portland State University on the topics of digital marketing, entrepreneurship and women in technology. Anna was also recognized on the Portland Business Journal’s Forty Under 40 Award List for 2017.
Jenn Lynch is a General Partner at Portland Seed Fund, an early stage venture fund focused on Oregon-based companies. Prior to PSF, Jenn managed her own fund, Upstart Labs, after a career as a software product manager and product marketing manager with companies such as Dachis Group, Unicru, BrassRing, and Yahoo. In addition to BBPDX, Jenn sits on the boards of Oregon Public Broadcasting, Schoolhouse Supplies, and the Oregon Alliance for Gun Safety. She was recognized on the Portland Business Journal's Forty under 40 list in 2013. She has earned an M.B.A. from Columbia Business School and a B.S. in Journalism from the Medill School at Northwestern University.
Amy is the Director of Organizational Development at Boly Welch. She has spent her career in talent acquisition, professional training/ facilitation, D&I, and business development which have honed her skills in leading change, building culture, and fostering environments where people can achieve their full potential. Bringing individuals together to create collaborative relationships that enhance personal and organizational performance is her passion! Her BA is in Sociology from Western Washington University.
She also shares her time as a Rotarian within their Under40 Leadership cohort, on the board of the Construction Financial Management Association Education Committee, while participating on panels for the National Diversity Council - Oregon, PDXWIT, EPOP, Clackamas Chamber of Commerce, PNDC, Linkage Institute, and Partners in Diversity’s Young Professional Program… Peers and partners alike describe Amy as dedicated, tenacious, a “connector” and most importantly… caring.
Associate Board of Directors
Jordan Hayles is the founder of The Radical Brand Lab and author of the forthcoming book, Your Brand is Boring. She focuses on humorous, provocative books and brands. When she's not writing comedy or heading up strategy, she is the lead visionary for the quirky Portland startup Period Petty.
Liliya is the Director of Operations at Modernist Financial. In this role, she is focused on structuring the financial planning, investment management, and internal strategic planning processes that help Modernist flourish. She also heads up most of the content production for the firm’s marketing efforts. Liliya spearheaded Modernist’s B Corp™ certification effort, and is an avid supporter of the conscious capitalism movement. She was part of Modernist’s founding team, having worked in private banking and financial services earlier in her career.
When she is not working, she prefers being outside – hiking, cycling, and running. In winter, she likes to venture out for cultural events and the occasional drawing class. In addition to BBPDX’s Associate Board, she serves on the Board of the Portland chapter of Women in Insurance and Financial Services, and volunteers with Women’s Foundation of Oregon whenever she can.
Born in Baltimore, Maryland and raised in Portland, Oregon, Noah helps run two staple-tech companies in town; he works as the Director of Business Development at Pop Art, Inc. and is also the co-founder of Above The Fray Design, Inc. Both organizations have a focus and dedication to not only improving the lives of their colleagues and clients, but their extended communities as a whole. Business should be a vehicle for good, and this core value informs all of their professional actions and transactions.
Outside of the technology world Noah likes to relive his olden days as a DJ, getting the ill-informed clued in to the superiority of hip-hop’s first 25 years. Every chance he gets he grabs a paddle to chase some whitewater, and is always looking for friendly invites to river runs across the globe. He’s patiently waiting for the day he can take his newborn son Mateo out on the rapids.
Abby is an HR Recruiter + Consultant for Boly:Welch, a local women-founded employment agency, where she is connected to the Portland community both professionally and personally. She’s seen the world growing up in a Navy family, and established that there is no place better than Oregon. She’s a double Duck from the University of Oregon, a member of the Oregon bar, an active Rotarian, and avid David Bowie fan. As a member of the BBPDX Associate Board, she’s driven to involving businesses to make Portland a more equitable, diverse, thriving, and prosperous place for everyone.
Mike Westling is a senior account manager at Brink Communications, where he helps government agencies, nonprofits, and start-ups advance innovative public policy, build communities, and connect people to complex issues. Before coming to Brink, Mike was the press secretary for U.S. Senator Jeff Merkley. His political career includes roles with Obama for America, the 2008 Presidential Inaugural Committee, and the office of Wisconsin Governor Jim Doyle. He holds a bachelor’s degree in political science and journalism from the University of Wisconsin and a master’s degree in urban planning from the University of Michigan.
Mike recently served as a member of the City Club of Portland's Affordable Housing Research Committee and the Portland Bureau of Transportation’s Centers and Corridors Parking Study Stakeholder Advisory Committee.
Ashley leads the organization’s efforts to engage Portland’s business leaders in the civic processes that shape the direction of the city. She is passionate about ensuring that our community’s business leaders are connected with strategic opportunities to bring greater shared prosperity to all Portlanders. Just five months after launching BBPDX, the organization was recognized by the Portland Business Journal as one of the region’s Top 25 Chambers of Commerce. Ashley was also personally named as “One of 18 To Watch in 2018” by the Portland Business Journal.
Her work prior to BBPDX has been at the intersection of the business, civic, nonprofit and philanthropic sectors. Her areas of focus have included community development, affordable housing, impact investing, climate and renewable energy policy, and fish and watershed restoration. She’s worked with leading organizations such as Climate Solutions, Stoel Rives LLP, Oregon Business Association, and Oregon Trout.
Ashley is a Senior Fellow with the American Leadership Forum of Oregon. As a singer, she has produced shows at notable venues such as The Doug Fir and Jimmy Mak’s to raise funds for local nonprofits The Wetlands Conservancy and My Voice Music.
Member Engagement Director
David Muller is an experienced professional in nonprofit membership development and sustainability consulting. A 15-year Portland resident, David is committed to civic engagement and collaborative efforts to make Portland a great place to live for all its residents, now and in perpetuity. He believes in the power of business to change Portland, and the world, for the better.
For the past 3 years, David has worked as a consultant to various companies and organizations in and around the global sports industry, helping them both implement and communicate holistic commitments to sustainability as a core operating principle. Most recently, he was in-house Sustainability Consultant to the 2018 Special Olympics USA Games in Seattle, designing the Sustainability Strategy for the Games, as well as producing a Sustainability Impact Report and Legacy Playbook/Toolkit for future organizers, in concert with the USA Games Organizing Committee. Prior to that, as the founding Membership Director for the Green Sports Alliance, David was the primary point of contact for the its broad member network. Acting as an advisor, researcher, connector, writer, promoter, and much more, David was primarily responsible for the growth of GSA membership from 25 members in October 2011 to nearly 400 in May 2016, with a 98% renewal rate.
David serves on the Oregon Environmental Council’s Emerging Leaders Board, the Street Trust’s Revenue Committee, and as a founding member of Sport and Sustainability International. He earned his MBA in Sustainable Business from Presidio Graduate School (nee Bainbridge Graduate Institute).
Outside of work, David enjoys taking in nature, music, sports, and most of all spending time with his 5-year-old son, Noah.
Operations & Communications Manager
Wendy brings over a decade of success leading collaborative approaches to business and community engagement to her work with Business For a Better Portland. As the former Executive Director of The Rogue Initiative for a Vital Economy, she led food system innovation and collaboration in Southern Oregon prior to moving to Portland in 2018. Her masters in nonprofit management is from Southern Oregon University.
As a self-described database nerd and event addict, she’s honored to be putting her skills to use helping businesses use their strength to make the world a better place. When not at work, you may find her knitting or checking out the Montana State University pole vault scores where her son competes as a decathlete. She is taking her diagnosis as a recovering serious person seriously and is currently training to become a certified InterPlay Leader.