Meet the Mayor's Team

Glass door with a sign that reads 340, Mayor Ted Wheeler, Commissioner of Housing, Police & Administration

Sam Adams

Pronouns: He/him/his

Director of Strategic Innovations

Background: I’ve worked as a county government intern, a congressional aide, a campaign manager, a mayoral chief of staff, a member of Portland City Council, a Portland mayor, a nonprofit executive director, an environmental think tank leader for a global organization, a columnist, and a consultant. Growing up gay, with the help of subsidized affordable housing and food stamps, my lifelong passion for public service is dedicated to a common theme: making communities more educated, healthy, sustainable, prosperous, and equitable for all.

Herico Aiten

Pronouns: She/her/hers

Administrative & Communications Specialist for the Office of Violence Prevention and Scheduler for Director Nike Greene

Background: Constituent Services Specialist for the Office of Mayor Ted Wheeler, Constituent Services Specialist for the Office of City Commissioner Nick Fish. B.S in Social Science from Portland State University and a graduate from Reynolds High School.

Kandel Ashley 

Pronouns: He/him/his

Constituent Services Specialist

Background: Born and raised in Portland, Oregon, I grew up and still live in NE Portland. I love gardening and being around my family. In my previous role as a Gang Outreach and Intervention Specialist, I support my community as a mentor and advocate to youth, young adults, and their families impacted or experiencing gang/gun violence. 

Hayley Blonsley

Pronouns: She/her/hers

Budget and Central Services Advisor

Background: I’ve spent 7 years designing and facilitating public engagement research projects on behalf of local governments, nonprofit and community organizations, schools, and universities in three states. In past projects, I've worked to address systemic hunger and poverty in rural neighborhoods, develop strategic housing plans, and forefront inclusion and community voices in two city master plans. I have a B.A. in Communication Studies from the University of Nevada, Reno; an M.A. in Communication Studies specializing in Deliberative Practices from Colorado State University; and a Graduate Certificate in Public Management from the University of Missouri.

Cody Bowman

Pronouns: He/him/his

Communications & Social Media Specialist 

I help the Mayor’s team build stronger relationships with the public through strategic messaging. 

Background: I have wide-ranging experience in Public Affairs, working for a variety of elected officials, federal and state agencies, progressive political campaigns, and non-profit organizations.

Skyler Brocker-Knapp

Pronouns: She/her/hers


Senior Policy Advisor

As a native Portlander, no matter where I move to work or study, I always return to my home. Finding solutions to seemingly intractable problems through policy development is my passion.

Background: I am a lawyer, an alumna of University of Oregon School of Law, and earned a master’s degree in Political Science from Portland State University’s Hatfield School of Government. I believe politics can be a force for good and worked for Senator Ron Wyden as a legal fellow in Washington, D.C., as well as on various political campaigns throughout the country. I am fluent in Spanish and have worked on immigration issues abroad and in the U.S. 

Michelle David

Pronouns: She/her/hers


Arts, Music & Culture Liaison 

I provide support and direction for the City of Portland's efforts to revitalize our events industry and engage with key stakeholders on our reputation and rebranding campaigns.

Background: A Portland resident for the past twenty years, I've worked in arts administration, local alternative news media, hospitality, event ticketing, and many other industries dedicated to bringing people together in celebration. Currently Communications Director for the Portland Winter Light Festival, Co-President of the Board of Directors for Precipitation Northwest (a local non-profit dedicated to empowering our local arts community), and Co-Chair for the Events Action Table. I hold a B.A. in Art History from Reed College.

Andrew Fitzpatrick

Pronouns: He/him/his


Director of Economic Development

Background: I have spent 15 years advancing public policy that drives inclusive economic growth, serving as a policy director for Walmart, Inc., a Legislative Director in the U.S. House of Representatives, and an advisor for several U.S. Agency for International Development-funded economic development programs, in Afghanistan and Indonesia. I hold a Master of Public Policy from the Harvard Kennedy School, and a B.A. in Government from Colby College in Maine.

Grace Galvez 

Pronouns: She/her/hers

Project Assistant/Coordinator to Strategic Innovations Group

Background: Grace was born and raised in Quito, Ecuador. There she earned a Bachelor's degree from Polytechnic University of Ecuador and worked in aviation administration prior to relocating to the United States in 2013. She proudly became a U.S. citizen through the naturalization process and has earned two associates degrees from Pierce College in Washington. Prior to joining Mayor Wheeler's team, Grace spent eight years with Amazon in various roles of successively greater responsibility. She brings a wealth of experience in high[1]performance project, programmatic, and personnel management. In addition, Grace is a certified medical interpreter providing critical language translation and emotional support to diverse family and individualized needs throughout the Greater Portland medical community. Grace is the proud mother of an eight-year boy and is conversant in the indigenous language of Runasimi (Quecha) in addition to English and her native Spanish.

Christina Ghan

Pronouns: She/her/hers


Director of Planning 

Background: I've worked in urban planning and public policy for the last eight years, most recently as a policy advisor in the Mayor's Office in Seattle where I focused on land use/development, community investments, and economic recovery. I have a graduate degree in Urban Planning from Columbia University and a bachelor's in business and Economics, and spent a few years working in education on the east coast early in my career before returning home to the northwest.

Nike Greene

Director, Office of Violence Prevention

Background: Director of Education and Community Engagement for Portland’5 Metro, Family & Community Engagement Coordinator at Roosevelt High School, current Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, Current Roosevelt High Girls Basketball Coach.

Ashley Hernandez

Pronouns: she/her/hers


Administrative and Communications Specialist, Office of Violence Prevention

I provide administrative support for OVP’s programs, scheduling for Director Nike Green, and help the office connect with the community through social media.

Background: Administrative Assistant for Lewis & Clark Law School, Student Assistant for Community Engagement and Partnership at Portland State University Office of Global Diversity & Inclusion. B.S in Health Service Administration and Health Science from Oregon Health Science University & Portland State University School of Public Health.

Stephanie Howard

Pronouns: She/her/hers


Director of Community Safety 

Background: As a trial attorney with the Office of the Colorado State Public Defender, I worked to protect the constitutional rights of people accused of crimes ranging from petty offenses to homicide. I then expanded my criminal justice experience with the Office of the Independent Monitor for the City and County of Denver as a Deputy Monitor, where I evaluated and analyzed law enforcement internal affairs investigations and policies. I received my J.D. from the University of Denver Sturm College of Law and my B.A. with honors in Law & Society from the University of Denver. My entire career has been devoted to achieving fairness and equality in the criminal justice system and I am honored to use this experience to serve the people of Portland.

Bobby Lee

Pronouns: He/him/his

Chief of Staff

Background: Served as Director of Seattle’s Office of Economic Development and Director of Economic Development for Prosper Portland. At the state level, served two Oregon governors, focusing on regional economic and community development issues. In the nonprofit sector, served as Director of Organizational Affairs for Worksystems Inc., Oregon’s largest workforce development agency.

Tom Miller

Pronouns: He/him/his

Director, Livability & Sustainability

Taylor Morrison

Pronouns: She/her/hers


Administrative Assistant

Background: Taylor previously worked as a District Representative for the California State Senate District 2, an Administrative Assistant for the City of Arcata, and an Event Coordinator for the City of Ukiah. She also served on the Board of Directors for Project Sanctuary (a domestic violence and sexual assault crisis intervention nonprofit), worked on multiple electoral campaigns, organized nonprofit fundraisers, and volunteered with North Coast Opportunities and Plowshares (community dining hall) focusing on alleviating food insecurity. She has a B.A. in English - Literary Studies from Humboldt State University, and a Career & Life Planning Certificate from Chico State University.

Sara Morrissey

Pronouns: She/her/hers

Deputy Chief of Staff

Sanaa Shareef

Pronouns: She/her/hers

Constituent Services Specialist

Background: Sanaa graduated from Portland State University last spring with a major in Political Science. Sanaa is passionate about making an impact in her community through various facets. She is interested in expanding her professional horizons by seeking new challenges. Sanaa enjoys reading, spending time with family, biking, and exploring the city.

Sierra Ellis Turpin

Pronouns: She/her/hers

Operations Manager at the Office of Violence Prevention

As OVP’s Operations Manager, I manage the office budget, the grant reporting for our community based organizational partners and manage the daily operations of the office.

Background: Most recently I was the Special Assistant to the President of Reed College. Before that I was the Constituent Services Specialist to Mayor Wheeler. I have environmental education background in science and found my passion in public service and serving the community. I’m set out to make Portland a more vibrant, safer place to live, work, and play for everyone in our community.

Jenny Villarreal

Pronouns: She/her/hers

Business Operations Manager 

I serve as a liaison for the Mayor's Office to other internal bureaus within the City, primarily the Bureau of Human Resources, the Office of Management and Finance, and the Bureau of Technology Services, to provide business operations services to our team related to these areas. I work with the operations team and manage time entry, recruitment and onboarding, office supply orders and invoice payments. 

Background: I have worked in government for over ten years, previously as a Legal Assistant for Metro, a Rate Case Coordinator at Bonneville Power Administration, and a Family Court Specialist at Multnomah County Courthouse for the Oregon Judicial Department. I have also been a Design Assistant at Ankrom Moisan Associated Architects, worked in the Rose Room at Powell's Bookstore and was a Bilingual Children's Advocate at a domestic violence shelter for Volunteers of America. 

Mustafa Washington

Program Manager for the Office of Violence Prevention

Background: For previous work in Mayor Wheeler’s office, assisted in implementing the Mayor’s legislative agenda, and managed policy staff projects. Executive Assistant to Mayor Charlie Hales. Master of Science in Management and Organizational Leadership from Warner Pacific University.

Shuly Wasserstrom

Pronouns: She/her/hers

Communications & Social Media Specialist

I use social media to help Mayor Wheeler connect directly with his constituents and community.  

Background: Social Media Manager and Digital Content Producer for KOIN 6 News, Breaking News Editor, Newscast Host & Features Writer for The Jerusalem Post.

Amanda Wendelbo

Pronouns: She/her/hers


Executive Assistant to the Mayor

Background: A lifelong Oregonian, Amanda spent a decade working in public education, where she formed her deep dedication to equity and public service. As Executive Manager to the President at Portland State University, internal and external relationships were key to her success. She is an avid reader and international travel enthusiast. Amanda holds a Bachelor of Arts in Communication Studies and a Certificate in Strategic Communications and Public Relations from Portland State University.

Ness Zolan

Pronouns: He/him/his

Director of Legislation and Creative Economy Advisor

Background: I have been a Producer at the Kennedy Center in Washington DC, General Manager at the Eugene Symphony, and Project Development Analyst at Gigawatt Global in Jerusalem. I studied Music and Economics at UC Santa Cruz, and hold an MBA with specializations in Sustainability and Advanced Strategy & Leadership from University of Oregon. I have an Honorary Certificate in Strategic Development for the Arts from Ricardo Palma University in Lima, Peru from my work with the Pan American Symphony Orchestra. I am a violinist and composer, avid cyclist, and backpacking enthusiast.