Equity Choice Points: Understanding Equity in Rural Organization Development

With Elisa Harrigan, Housing Opportunities Program Officer, Meyer Memorial Trust, and Lauren Waudé, Momentum Fellow Housing Opportunities, Meyer Memorial Trust

In this session, learn how several Oregon rural housing providers reframed big and small choice points (decisions) to help their organizations engage in equity work. These nonprofits discovered what diversity/equity/inclusion meant to them and how to start the journey appropriate for each of them.

Click here to view a recording of the session.

Elisa Harrigan
Housing Opportunities Program Officer, Meyer Memorial Trust

Elisa Harrigan (she/her/hers), Housing Opportunities Program Officer, Meyer Memorial Trust. Elisa joined Meyer Memorial Trust in 2014 to co-lead the Affordable Housing Initiative. Prior to joining Meyer, Elisa was the executive director of the Community Alliance of Tenants (CAT), Oregon’s only grassroots tenant-led organization. Elisa was named “Best Low Income Tenant Advocate” by the Willamette Week in 2009 for her work on renter organizing related to displacement and substandard housing issues. Elisa has been involved in several projects and studies related to fair housing programs, affordable housing policies and revenue development, and systems change work. Her areas of expertise include policy and systems change, program development, nonprofit management, access and retention of renters in private market housing, Diversity/Equity/Inclusion in nonprofits, and community organizing. Meyer Memorial Trust, established from the estate of Fred G. Meyer in 1982, is one of the largest private foundations in Oregon, with current assets of $840 million. Meyer works with and invests in organizations, communities, ideas and efforts that contribute to a flourishing and equitable Oregon.

Lauren Waudé
Momentum Fellow Housing Opportunities, Meyer Memorial Trust

Lauren Waudé (she/her/hers) is a Senior Program Specialist on the Housing Stability Team for Multnomah County. She manages several housing stability programs and supports the legislative policy work for the Youth and Family Services Division. Prior to her work at Multnomah County, Lauren served as a Program Officer Fellow in the Housing Opportunities Portfolio at the Meyer Memorial Trust where she co-developed and co-lead the Rural Equity Advancement Strategy and Equity Housing Summit with Elisa Harrigan. She has over a decade of direct service experience managing programs such as transitional housing, rent assistance, eviction prevention, permanent supportive housing and utility assistance in both Portland and Seattle.

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