Board of Directors

Pictured: some current and past members of the Jackson Street Board of Directors

Gary Lasater – President
Elected to board: January 2017
Occupation: Retired Youth Worker
Comments: During Gary’s career, he served as a juvenile probation officer, juvenile court director, homeless family shelter director, and mental health trainer for Oregon Youth Authority. He believes all youth can be successful if given the right skills and positive support. Gary absolutely believes in the concept of Positive Human Development.

Sarah Grotelueschen — Vice President
Elected to board: January 2017
Occupation: Strategic Advisor and Lead Data Scientist at Deloitte
Comments: During college, Sarah helped at-risk youth overcome their personal circumstances to achieve
success in school. She believes that in order to provide positive contributions to society, our youth need to know and feel that people in the world care about them and will support them in finding success. Jackson Street helps the youth it serves by connecting them with people who care and providing them access to the tools they need to achieve their dreams.

Rita Hamann – Secretary
Elected to board: August 2011, January 2019
Occupation: Instructional Assistant
Comments: Rita comes with a passion for youth and has volunteered as a mentor in Astoria, Oregon, and for Jackson Street. She’s also been a SMART reader and chaired the Board for the Clatsop County Women’s Resource Center for three years. Additionally, she was a part-time office manager for Lutheran Community Services NW, and has worked with high school youth in the various churches she’s attended. “Children are our present and future, and deserve a life of learning, growing, happiness, and love,” Rita says.

Lynn Egli – Treasurer
Elected to board: November 2010, January 2018
Occupation: Self-Employed
Comments: Lynn and his wife Roberta have gradually grown into supporters of Jackson Street, first through a personal relationship with a former resident and several staff members. They see Jackson Street as a critical resource to youth and families for the mid-Willamette Valley. Lynn sees a strong need for a youth shelter in Linn County.

Eric Aguinaga
Elected to board: January 2020
Occupation: Business Development at Albany Area Chamber of Commerce
Comments: At 18, Eric enlisted in the United States Air Force for twelve years. After serving, Eric pursued a career in the private sector. Eric has worked with at-risk youth for six years through the Oregon Youth Challenge Program in Bend, Oregon. These days he advocates consistently for underrepresented students in the Greater Albany Public School system. He believes Jackson Street is a vessel that saves and supports many youth who have no other options.

Jennifer Beaumont
Elected to board: March 2019
Occupation: Director of Hospitality at Corvallis Knights
Comments: As an adoptee and former foster parent, Jennifer views adversity in youth culture from a unique perspective. Having worked and volunteered with many youth-centered organizations over the past 20 years, Jennifer sees the special value of the services provided by Jackson Street, especially in the quality and depth of care. She is a strong believer that seeds planted today will grow into amazing possibilities in the future. Jennifer wants youth from all walks of life to know that your past does not have to dictate your future.

Kate Conolly
Elected to board: January 2013, January 2020
Occupation: retired United Methodist clergy
Comments: Jackson Street is the result of tenacious and caring folks who saw a tremendous need in Linn and Benton counties, and visualized a safe and nurturing environment for homeless and at-risk youth. “I feel privileged to join with others in this vital work,” says Kate. “I want to do what I can to support the current work of Jackson Street and to work for the day when we can provide shelter in Albany as well.”

Catherine Fisher
Elected to board: January 2020
Occupation: Owner & Principal Broker at Town & Country Realty
Comments: Catherine believes there is so much potential in kids and that we need to do everything we can to help kids in bad situations have the opportunity to reach their true potential. Through caring, structured interactions with positive role models, and a safe place to explore possibilities, we can help these youth learn important life skills, become more self‐confident, identify opportunities, and become more than their situation would otherwise dictate.

Kela Lynn
Elected to board: November 2018
Occupation: Social Worker
Comments: Kela is a social worker with over twenty years of experience, a wife, and a mom. In all of those areas, she knows the great power of relationships as a change agent for healing. She knows that Jackson Street Youth Services cultivates safe and healthy relationships with youth in so many ways – through mentoring, education, shelter, life skills, food, and opportunities!

Royce Markley Elected to board: November 2018
Occupation: Graduate Student at Lewis & Clark College
Comments: Royce is a 25-year-old graduate student studying Professional Mental Health Counseling at Lewis & Clark College. He is a long-time foster care advocate and the author of the FosterFight blog. As a former Jackson Street resident, Royce truly understands how important these services are. “Providing our most vulnerable youth a place to feel safe and supported is crucial for producing positive outcomes for those youth,” he says.

Amy Spangler
Elected to board: November 2018
Occupation: Attorney at The Reynolds Law Firm
Comments: Following college, Amy served two years with AmeriCorps, serving at-risk youth through shelters, food pantries and in schools. She knows how important a support system, resources, and positive role models are in helping youth become successful adults. Jackson Street connects youth with the supports they need to thrive.

Joann Zimmer Elected to board: January 2020
Occupation: Beyond-the-Box Strategies, LLC
Comments: Joann’s involvement with Jackson Street began years ago as a committee member framing efforts to bring a youth shelter to Linn County; from 2010 through 2012 she worked part-time for Jackson Street specifically involved in the Linn County Project to bring both shelter and youth outreach support to
Albany. While working in community action through the last 16 years and volunteering on both Linn and Benton counties’ citizen review boards for children in foster care, Joann’s interest and concern for homeless and at-risk youth have been solid, consistent, and full of hope. She believes that by providing positive and compassionate support now in their growing years, our most vulnerable youth have a terrific shot at bright futures as strong members of the greater community.

Donate Now button for Jackson Street Youth Shelter goes to the Network for Good for secure online donations.

“I was broken inside. I felt worthless and unwanted.”

“I will never forget how hard the staff fought for me; they were my advocates when no one else was.”

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Or mail check to:
Jackson Street Youth Services
PO Box 1984 Albany, OR 97321
PO Box 285 Corvallis, OR 97339

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Jackson Street Youth Services is an equal opportunity provider and employer.