The Public Defense Services Commission is an independent body that governs the Office of Public Defense Services and appoints its Executive Director. The
Chief Justice of the Oregon Supreme Court appoints the nine Commission members. The Commission's primary charge is to establish and maintain a public defense system that ensures the provision of public defense services consistent with the Oregon Constitution, the United States Consitution and Oregon and national standards of justice.
Peter Buckley is a former State Representative from Ashland and co-chair of the Ways & Means Committee. He retired from the legislature in 2017 and has more than 20 years’ experience in managing non-profit entities. He works for Southern Oregon Success and continues to be involved in mental health and public safety issues related to people in addiction and the services needed to support them. As a legislator and budget-committee co-chair, he helped protect public defense by authorizing diverting court-generated revenues to OPDS, which provided additional funding during a period of dramatic budget reductions in all state services.
Alton Harvey, Jr.
Alton Harvey, Jr. has dedicated his life to social service and giving back. Alton is the Lead Mentor for Portland Oregon's Volunteers of America Federal Parole & Probation and holds a CADC 1 certification. He has partnered with many community leaders, including members of the Portland Police Bureau, Beaverton Police Bureau, members of the Judicial system, including, the Multnomah Department of Community Justice to establish and enhance better relationships with the community. Alton is a member of the Portland Police Steering Committee, has served as the Board President of the START (Service Thru Accountability, Restitution, and Treatment) Drug Court Alumni Group, and was most recently the lead mentor for START Court. Alton is also a Folktime Board member, which is a peer driven mental health organization, and the lead facilitator of the H.E.A.T (Habitual, Empowerment, Accountability, and Therapy), a culturally specific group for African American Men 18-29 years old impacted by gangs, addiction, and trauma. Having been previously represented by public defense attorneys himself, he brings a valuable and unique perspective to the Public Defense Services Commission.
Lisa Ludwig has been a criminal defense attorney since 1996. She worked for several years as a public defender before going into private practice. She has handled all types of criminal cases through trial: traffic, drugs, property crimes, assaults, sexual assaults, robbery and homicide. She represents accused people in Oregon State and Federal courts and is a frequent presenter at conferences for attorneys and contributes to training manuals.
Jennifer Nash is a Corvallis attorney who represents clients in criminal and family-law matters. She is not currently a public defense provider, but previously has served on the Governor's Task Force on Indigent Defense, the Oregon Criminal Defense Lawyers Association Public Defense Reform Task Force, and its Pay Parity Committee, administered the public defense contract in Benton County, and was a member of the Willamette Criminal Justice Council, a statutory body that coordinates local criminal justice plans and policies in Benton County.
Jennifer Parrish Taylor
Jennifer Parrish Taylor is the Director of Advocacy and Public Policy for the Urban League of Portland. She brings over a decade of community and political organizing experience in communities of color. Jennifer grew up in Portland, Oregon, an experience that shaped and informed her outlook and served as the catalyst of her passion to commit herself to issues of social justice. Upon her graduation from Smith College, she held several different positions on the Obama for America campaign and would later serve in the Obama Administration as a Special Assistant at the Peace Corps. After a decade in Washington D.C., she returned to her native Portland to work as an organizer with Working America and was part of an effort to advance both Paid Sick Leave and raising Oregon's minimum wage to $15. As the State Affiliate Political Organizer for American Federation of Teachers, Oregon, she worked closely with members and local union leaders to advance their political programs.
Per Ramfjord, Chair
Per Ramfjord is a trial lawyer who represents clients in criminal and civil litigation, with an emphasis on white-collar, environmental, tax and energy matters. He has handled a wide variety of criminal matters, including investigations and prosecutions under various environmental statutes such as the Clean Water Act, Clean Air Act, RCRA, and Endangered Species Act as well as securities fraud, wire fraud, tax fraud, money laundering, and healthcare matters under the Stark and Anti-Kickback statutes. He also has related civil litigation experience at the federal, state, and local level in citizen suits brought under various environmental laws, business and energy disputes, and tax matters. As a former U.S. Attorney, he has significant trial experience as both a prosecutor and defense lawyer and is a frequent speaker and author on white-collar, trial practice, and environmental law issues. He has given presentations or prepared articles for the Oregon Law Institute, Association of General Counsel, Federal Bar Association, American Bar Association, and other organizations.
Paul Solomon, Vice-Chair
Biography Coming Soon
Chief Justice Martha L. Walters, Ex Officio
The Oregon Justice Department biography for the Chief Justice located
Max Williams is, most recently, the outgoing President and CEO of Oregon Community Foundation, whose mission is to improve the lives of all Oregonians through the power of philanthropy. Prior to that, he served as the Director of the Oregon Department of Corrections (DOC) from 2004 to 2011. From 1999 through 2003, he represented Tigard and the surrounding area in the Oregon Legislative Assembly, during that time he served two terms as the Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, he was chair of the Legislative Counsel Committee and was a member of the House Revenue Committee. Williams also worked as a civil litigation attorney with Miller Nash LLP from 1991 - 2003. He has been a consistent advocate for the protection of the rights of the accused and believes that is a foundation of the justice system, he has put forth policies and budgets across the system to assure those protections.
Kristen Winemiller is a Portland attorney in private practice who chaired the Oregon State Bar Indigent Defense Task Force in 2000. Among its recommendations were increased resources in OPDS for administration, creating a Resource and Assistance Office in OPDS, and providing additional support for public defense lawyers involved in civil commitment and juvenile cases. She is a life member of the Oregon Criminal Defense Lawyers Association and has served on the Oregon Bar, Press, and Broadcaster Council.