City/County Info: 503-823-4000
1221 SW 4th Ave, Suite 110, Portland, OR 97204
At Civic Life we are committed to working with and partnering with all communities. An important step in this effort includes creating a workforce that is multilingual, multicultural and reflects the immense talent of our city.
Below we proudly introduce our newest Civic Life team members! Each of these members brings their unique experience, skills, and a deep commitment toward working with all Portlanders to foster and support civic engagement.
EPCO Grants Program Specialist: Angela comes to us from East Multnomah Soil and Water Conservation District, where she spent the last five years leading annual events, conducting community outreach, and coordinating the small grants program. She has a Master of City and Regional Planning from Cornell University and a Bachelor of Architecture from Portland State University. Angela is fluent in Portuguese, her family’s native language, and proficient in Spanish. Angela is an avid cyclist and when she isn’t at work, she is in her garden with her chickens or on a hike with her dog.
Ashley Tjaden (Tjaden pronounced Jay-den)
Advisory Bodies Management Analyst: Ashley is thrilled to employ her energy for public involvement and equity at the Office of Community & Civic Life! From her first role diving in dumpsters to implement Metro’s first regional commercial composting program, to standing over broken sewers at the Bureau of Environmental Services, Ashley is not afraid to roll up her sleeves in the name of public service. Her most recent position was at the Portland Water Bureau as an Outreach and Equity Specialist. Ashley received her bachelor’s degree in Community Development. She also teaches about local government through student-teaching Urban Studies to freshman and senior undergraduates at her alma mater, Portland State. Ashley currently lives in East Portland with her partner and teacup chihuahua.
Community Outreach & Information Assistant: Lishao Chen is the new Community Outreach & Information Assistant at our East Portland Community Office. She immigrated to the United States from China in 2005. She can speak both Cantonese and Mandarin. She is a first-generation student and she graduated from Portland Community College and Pacific University with a degree in Sociology in 2018. Currently, she serves on the board for Momentum Alliance, a non-profit that inspire young people to realize their power and pursue social justice. She is also part of a Rotaract club, which is a service-oriented club that engaged in the community through service. Lishao is excited to be part of East Portland Community Office to provide community building and civic engagement support for the community. Visit East Portland Community Office website here.
Community Connections Program Coordinator: Mingus received his bachelor’s degree in Political Science from Reed College and a Ph.D. in Government from Cornell University. Since 2015, he has served as the Executive Director of the Historic Parkrose Neighborhood Partnership initiative, an urban renewal zone in east Portland. He has worked in the public sector and as a Political Science professor. His stints in the public sector, include positions in the Multnomah County Chair’s office, the Portland Public School’s Governmental Relations office, and local government and non-profit organizations. In academia, Mingus served as an Assistant Professor at Brandeis University and Bowdoin College. Before that, Mingus served as a post-doctorate researcher at Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government. Mingus’ academic research and teaching focus on issues at the intersection of race, inequality, and public policy. At this point in his career, Mingus’ main professional goal is to help build a more equitable, inclusive, and livable Portland. Mingus is also the parent of two young children, who attend Portland Public Schools. In his free time, he enjoys spending time with his kids, running, and biking.
Shuk Arifdjanov (Shuk Pronounced “Shook”)
Civic Engagement Program Coordinator: Shuk has worked in international and domestic nonprofit management and development for over 25 years. He entered the field of international relief work in the 1990s, supporting and coordinating multilateral programs in Eastern Europe and Central Asia. Shuk is a dedicated professional with experience gained from multi-cultural environments. He is passionate about working in community outreach and engagement programs. He has volunteered for Portland community organizations and has been passionate in local and diverse community services and outreach, working for community health, peace and social justice. Shuk also has a keen interest in learning about different cultures and languages. He has traveled the Globe with relief and humanitarian programs. Other than English, he is fluent in Russian and other Central Asian languages. He calls Portland home and has a Master’s degree from Mark O. Hatfield School of Government at Portland State University.
Meet members of team Civic Life and learn more about their civic engagement activities.