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Members of the Commission
Co-Chair Hussein Al-Baiaty
Hussein Al-Baiaty - Hillsboro

I came to the United States in 1994 from Saudi Arabia; which is in itself a true miracle. My parents, six siblings, and I left the regime of Saddam in 1991 for a desert refugee camp in Saudi Arabia that we spent the next 3 years enduring. This unforgettable experience became the fuel to my desire to take advantage of every positive opportunity I can. The United States has allowed my family and I to live in peace and prosper. I was able to attend Portland State University, study Architecture and Graphic Design, and begin to pursue my passion.
In 2005, I began with only one screen printing press and a vision to create art on tshirts. It was a learning process as I progressed through my college years and constantly working at my passions. This was a humbling time in my life as I decided creating my own path through screen printing and designing after receiving my degree. It was inevitable with the lack of jobs and downturned economy in 2008 being an entrepreneur would become a career. The opportunity within my community and ability to be creative allowed me a path to grow my small printing operation. We have now expanded to a multipress operation employing 4-10 people in Hillsboro, Oregon.

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Co-Chair Mohamed Alyajouri

Mohamed Alyajouri - Portland

Mohamed Alyajouri is currently a healthcare administrator, managing two Oregon Health and Sciences University (OHSU) Primary Care clinics. Mohamed serves on the leadership team of OHSU’s growing primary care team, which has expanded to Washington County over the past two years. With over 15 years in the Healthcare field, his experience includes Program Development work for Oregon’s Community Health Centers, Project Management for Multnomah County Health dept. and other Quality Improvement work. Additionally, Mohamed has international experience working with the World Health Organization.
Mohamed has always had a passion for positive civic engagement and to better the community.  For most of his adult life, his professional and community involvement has been around community building, social justice initiatives, interfaith outreach and partnerships and public health promotion. As a proud Oregonian, a Yemeni-American, and a first-generation Muslim immigrant, he decided to run for local public office. In the Spring of 2017, Mohamed was elected to the 7-member Portland Community College Board of Directors, serving residents of Washington and Yamhill counties. Mohamed was the first and only Muslim-immigrant to be elected to any public office in Oregon.
Mohamed grew up in Oregon, as a proud first-generation immigrant. He is an OSU Beaver Believer, through and through. He completed both his undergraduate and graduate studies at Oregon State University, receiving his Bachelors in Healthcare Administration and his Masters in Public Health. Mohamed lives in Beaverton Oregon with his wife and 3 children. 
In addition to being an elected official, Mohamed also serves on World Oregon's Advisory Board and the Muslim Educational Trust's Outreach Committee.

Vice Chair


Vice Chair Bennie 
Bennie Moses-Mesubed - La Grande

Bennie Moses-Mesubed is currently the Multicultural Center Director at Eastern Oregon University where she works to develop comprehensive programs focused on diversity awareness, education, and to promote an inclusive educational environment that nurtures cross cultural communication and fosters the exchange of diverse perspectives and ideals.  In addition, she works to advocate and provide support, resources and services for underrepresented students to enhance student learning, growth and academic success in order to meet institutional diversity strategic priorities.

Bennie earned her Master’s in Business Administration degree at Eastern Oregon University. Over the years, she has been involved with different local and state groups/organizations such as the La Grande Shelter from the Storm, La Grande Oregon Rural Action, Arts East, Community Connection Transit Advisory committee, Oregon Community Foundation Scholarship committee, APANO Leadership Institute and the CANN National Alliance Board. She is passionate about diversity work and empowering people to build skills and a comfort level that allows them to engage in safe, yet thought provoking conversations on diversity. Bennie is a native of the Republic of Palau and has lived in La Grande, OR for over 20 years with her husband Clinton and 4 daughters – Cira, Kaiya, Jennah and Keana.​


Jessica Asai - Portland
Bio and photo coming.

Commissioner Susan
Soonkeum Cox

​Susan Soonkeum Cox (Hong Soon Keum) - Eugene
Adopted from Korea in 1956
Susan is Vice President Policy & External Affairs at Holt International and is an internationally recognized expert and presenter on child welfare and adoption. She testifies regularly before Congress on these issues and has attended numerous White House briefings on public policy regarding adoption and child welfare; was instrumental in passing legislation providing automatic citizenship for children adopted abroad and to ratify the Hague Convention on Intercountry adoption in the U.S.
Ms. Cox has published numerous articles and papers; is editor of the anthologies, Voices from Another Place; More Voices; and founder of the Gathering for Korean Adoptees in 1999 in Washington D.C. and the Reunion of Vietnamese Adoptees.
Ms. Cox is a member of the Hague Special Commission on Intercountry Adoption; and was appointed by President Clinton to the White House Commission on Asian and Pacific Islanders. She was invited as a special guest to attend South Korea’s 60th Anniversary Celebration; and was awarded an Honorary Citizen of Seoul in 2005 by President elect Lee Myung-bak.
 In 2013, Susan was appointed as Honorary Consul for the State of Oregon in Eugene, by the Republic of Korea Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Commissioner Jackie Leung 
Jackie Leung - Salem


Jackie moved to Salem, Oregon in 2011.  She speaks Chinese, Spanish, and learning to speak Chuukese.  She has a Masters of Science in Public Health from the University of Iowa and a Juris Doctorate from Willamette University College of Law.  She is a PhD student at Oregon State University. She is an advocate for domestic violence survivors, examining legislative issues affecting the Asian and Pacific Islander community, cultural competency training programs, and organizes social justice oriented programs within the community.  Jackie currently works as a Community Organizer and Community Health Worker Supervisor and assists Micronesian Islanders including COFA citizens on health issues.

Commissioner Chanpone Sinlapasai-Okamura

Chanpone Sinlapasai-Okamura - Portland
Chanpone Sinlapasai-Okamura is a partner with Marandas & Sinlapasai. She represents clients regarding general immigration law matters including visas, citizenship issues, consular processing, deportation defense and appeals. Ms. Sinlapasai-Okamura focuses her practice in assisting children who have been abused, abandoned and neglected, and individuals who are survivors of domestic violence, serious crime, and human trafficking.
Ms. Sinlapasai-Okamura received her J.D., from Northwestern School of Law of Lewis & Clark College, 2002 and is a member of the Cornelius Honor Society. She has her B.A. (English & Philosophy), from Santa Clara University, 1998. She is an active member of the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA Oregon) and currently serves as the co-liaison for Immigration Custom’s Enforcement.  Her volunteer work includes chairing the DOJ’s Immigrant Crime Victim’s Rights Enforcement subcommittee, member of the Victims of Crime Act Advisory Committee for the State of Oregon, DOJ’s Immigrant Crime Victim’s Right Compliance Project Advisory Committee, F.B.I. Citizen’s Alumni Board (Oregon FBI Council on Community Outreach), Oregon Asian Pacific American Bar Association, Oregon Minority Lawyer’s Association, and Oregon Women’s Lawyer’s Association.

Commissioner Toc Soneoulay-Gillespie​
Toc Soneoulay-Gillespie - Hillsboro
Toc Soneoulay-Gillespie has over 20 years of experience working with and advocating for refugees and immigrants. As a 1.5 generation refugee, she brings a unique perspective for understanding the strengths and complexities of working with refugees and immigrants. She holds a bachelor’s degree in Anthropology/Sociology from Eastern Oregon University and a Master of Social Work from the University of Alaska Anchorage. Both her undergraduate and graduate research comprised of the use of participatory action framework to explore and address the disparities in meaningful language access for limited English proficient individuals in healthcare and the U.S. Naturalization process.
Ms. Soneoulay-Gillespie has substantial experience advocating for systemic change related to the needs of refugees and immigrants in both direct practice, program management capacities, policy, and community advocacy. Having served as an interpreter, consultant, and trainer, she is also passionate about the development and professionalism of the interpreting field. In partnership with the Alaska State Refugee Coordinator, she developed a 16-hour curriculum that trains providers and interpreters on the fundamentals of interpreting to ensure they are working from the same platform of expectations and ethics.


Commissioner David Yuen Tam
David Yuen Tam - Eugene

David Yuen Tam is the President of Tam Global Consultants a Eugene, Oregon based company. He is a professional consultant specializing in renewable energy technologies, sustainable business development, sustainable real estate consultant and investor who possess over 20 years of experience helping U.S. and international firms grow and expand their business. Tam Global Consultants help provide relevant and up-to-date information pertaining to the various aspects of business development and market information for global companies. 
Mr. Tam has been consulting businesses since 1995 on a variety of different levels such as real estate development projects, manufacturing, marketing, government contracts, investor identification, merger and acquisition, grant funding, management of cross cultural and cross border teams, performance improvement, business restructure, global market entry and expansion as well as many other global business challenges that business face.

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Oregon Legislative Assembly Representatives
Senator Michael Dembrow

Senator Michael Dembrow - D - Portland, District 23

Michael Dembrow is the state senator for District 23, covering portions of NE and SE Portland and the city of Maywood Park. First elected by voters in 2008 to the state house, he is serving his first term in the senate after being appointed to the seat in November 2013.  Voters re-elected Michael to the senate in November 2014.
No stranger to public service, Michael is an English instructor at Portland Community College's Cascade campus in North Portland. He has been teaching writing and film studies at the college since 1981, and served as the President of the PCC faculty union for 16 years.  He continues to teach one or two classes per term when the legislature is not in session.
Michael earned his undergraduate degree in English from the University of Connecticut and his Master's degree in Comparative Literature from Indiana University. Michael and his wife Kiki have lived in District 23 for over 30 years. They have a son, Nikolai and a daughter, Tatyana and two grandchildren.  Michael is an avid runner and has completed the Portland Marathon multiple times.  He and Kiki are proud parents of two whippets. 


Representative Carla Piluso- D - Gresham, District 50

Representative Carla Piluso
Carla Piluso grew up in Multnomah County, Oregon. As a child, she remembers her parents’ work ethic and strong sense of family. Carla’s father built the house they lived in, and her parents and three siblings rarely missed a meal together.  
Carla was first in her family to finish college. She graduated from Willamette University with degrees in Political Science and Speech. When Carla completed her senior project as an intern for the Oregon State Police, she got to observe the state’s first female troopers. The challenges of being among the first female troopers stuck with Carla, until she achieved her own ‘first’ as Gresham’s first woman Chief of Police.
In 1979, Carla began working here for the Gresham Police Department, and served for 30 years. She was the first woman to be promoted through every rank, eventually serving as the Chief of Police for six years before retiring. As Chief, Carla fought to keep our children safe by funding School Safety Officers and securing $1.5 million to fund the East Metro Gang Enforcement Team, which still combats gang crime in our community. She also focused heavily on domestic violence, and was one of the first to access funds from the federal Violence Against Women Act to better serve the community. She still puts on a domestic violence vigil annually in Gresham.

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