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About Us

Who We Are

Established in 2011, the Office of Equity and Multicultural Services (OEMS) is charged with providing leadership and direction supporting equity, diversity and inclusion for the Oregon Department of Human Services (DHS). Strategically, OEMS is currently organized around three major areas:

  1. Service Equity
  2. Civil Rights, Affirmative Action, and Equal Opportunity; and
  3. Workforce Diversity & Inclusion programs.

Mission

The Office of Equity and Multicultural Services (OEMS) is charged with providing leadership and direction supporting equity, diversity and inclusion throughout the Department of Human Services. OEMS is also committed to reducing disparities and barriers within the communities we serve. OEMS guides systemic changes to bring the opportunity for success to individuals and communities in the state of Oregon.

Vision

Every individual and community has dignity, respect and full measure of human rights.


 

Staff Bios

Lydia Muñiz, OEMS Director

Since April 2013, Lydia Muñiz has served as the director of OEMS.  Lydia brings over 23 years of state government experience working in programs that focus on providing services to underrepresented and underserved communities.  Prior to coming to DHS she served as the Governor’s Advocate for Minority, Women and Emerging Small Businesses for 16 years.

Lydia has a long and distinguished career in state government and is respected for her leadership as well as her volunteerism in the community.  In 2004 Lydia was awarded the Athena Award in recognition of her leadership in the areas of mentoring and providing support to women business owners.  Lydia is a founding member of the Oregon State Hispanic Employees Network and in 1994 she was a founder of Scholarships for Oregon Latinos (a scholarship program at Chemeketa Community College targeting Latino students for higher education in the professional fields). 

Lydia comes from a place of personal commitment from opening doors for others, to helping organizations reach their objectives of diversity and inclusion in the workplace to be a champion of opportunity and change for a better future.

Since becoming the director of OEMS she has focused the office on providing leadership in two key areas;  Service Equity, and Community Engagement. 

Sean Michael Handlery, J.D., Executive Assistant

Sean Michael Handlery serves as the executive assistant for the DHS Office of Equity and Multicultural Services.  Sean previously worked in a variety of law offices in the private sector and most recently worked with the Oregon Health Authority’s Division of Medical Assistance Programs (DMAP) in the Client Services Unit.  Sean has a B.A. in Political Science from the University of California at Davis, and a J.D. from Loyola University Chicago.  He looks forward to a long and prosperous career with the State of Oregon.


Marisa Salinas, J.D., Civil Rights/EEO Officer

Marisa Salinas graduated George Fox University with Bachelor of Arts in Social Work/Sociology and Spanish. Ms. Salinas later attended and graduated from Willamette University College of Law. After law school, Ms. Salinas was a recipient of a two year fellowship from Equal Justice Works (formerly the National Association for Public Interest Law). Ms. Salinas has dedicated her career to working with diverse communities in Oregon and ensuring that individuals’ civil rights are protected. Ms. Salinas’ interest in civil rights began with personal experiences as someone that is multiracial, the grandchild of migrant farmworkers and the sibling of a person with disabilities. Ms. Salinas has worked with Legal Aid Services of Oregon Farmworkers Program, the Oregon Judicial Department Citizen Review Board and volunteered as a board member on the Eugene Civilian Review Board. Ms. Salinas began working with the Department of Human Services in 2006 as a bilingual (Spanish) and ICWA permanency worker.

 

Jason Mak, Diversity and Inclusion Manager

Jason Mak currently serves as the DHS Diversity and Inclusion Manager.  Jason graduated from the University of Oregon with a Bachelor’s Degree in Ethnic Studies and did his graduate work in Asian American Studies at UCLA.  With responsibilities for developing internal workforce D&I initiatives, Jason has also served as the Diversity and Equity Manager at the City of Eugene; worked as the Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Analyst at Lane Community College; was the HR Recruitment Manager at Eugene School District; and taught Ethnic Studies courses as an adjunct instructor.  As a second generation Chinese American, Jason is actively involved in a number of local and national community groups and professional D&I associations and enjoys mentoring and learning from the next generation of young leaders.

 

Oscar Hererra, Service Equity Manager

Oscar Herrera currently serves as the DHS Service Equity Manager.  He has more than twenty years of experience in the field of human services, in the States of California and Oregon. Throughout his career, he has worked with diverse communities and populations in the delivery of social services.  In California, he served as a direct family care worker, as a Child Protective Services Social Worker in Sacramento, and later as a Head Start Social Worker.  He moved to Oregon in 1994 to accept a position as Supervisor for Oregon’s Migrant Head Start Program and in 1996 joined DHS as a Supervisor for Child Welfare Agency at the Marion County Branch.   In 2009 Oscar was promoted to the International Case Consultant position for DHS, where he led statewide efforts to ensure compliance with international rights and treaties for immigrant, refugee and other intercultural individuals.  He brings a wealth of experience, knowledge and skill to the field of service equity for the state of Oregon both professionally and personally.  

As an immigrant from El Salvador  Oscar holds a Bachelor’s degree in Commerce and Business Administration from El Salvador, has 45 units toward a Social Worker Bachelor Degree from San Francisco Community College, and is fluent in Spanish and English.  Oscar also studied languages in El Salvador and speaks Italian and Portuguese.

 

Alec Esquivel, J.D., Civil Rights Investigator

Alec Esquivel started with DHS January 2013.  He previously clerked for the Oregon Court of Appeals with the Honorable Darleen Ortega and Honorable Lynn Nakamoto.  Alec received his law degree from Willamette College of Law and holds a B.A. in English with minors in Political Studies and Women’s Studies from the University of Nebraska – Lincoln.  Currently, Alec is participating in the Graduate Conflict Resolution Program at Portland State University.  Additionally, he enjoys spending time with his family and visiting extended family in Nebraska, where he was born and raised.  Hobbies include: skiing, kayaking, Compassionate Communication, and watching end of the world movies.


Sidney Moore, J.D., ADA Coordinator

Sid Moore is DHS’s ADA Coordinator.  He comes to the Agency on rotation from the Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ), where he has been since March 2007.  Prior to his time at DEQ, Sid spent seven years at the University of Oregon, followed by a year at Oregon Health and Science University.  In his spare time, Sid enjoys watching and participating in sports, spending time with family and friends, and reading.  He has a wife and a five year-old son who organizes his after-work life.