Our Staff

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Certified in Therapeutic Life Story Work (TLSWi)

Email: kmorrisjacobson@nwresource.org

Phone: 503-241-0799 extension 16

Kendra oversees the Oregon Post Adoption Resource Center (ORPARC) and the Oregon Adoption Resource Exchange (OARE), and still fits in time for training and direct work with families, youth and workers. She joined Northwest Resource Associates in 2010 and sits on the Board of Directors for Washington D.C. based advocacy nonprofit, Voice for Adoption. Honored as Senator Wyden's 2016 Angel in Adoption, she has spent nearly 3 decades in the field, including in multiple roles with Boys & Girls Aid, the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption, and Voice for Adoption. In 2017, she authored a chapter for international life story work expert, Richard Rose and like all Family Support Specialist staff has completed Trust Based Relational Intervention 101 (TBRI®), basic Collaborative Problem Solving, among hundreds of other training experiences. As a prior editor, writer, and adoption recruiter, she has captured the stories of hundreds of foster & adoptive children and families whom she feels by far are our greatest teachers. In previous clinical work at Oregon Health & Science University, Kendra counseled children and families, led groups for adolescent depression, and contributed to research projects. Kendra obtained her B.A. in English Literature at Gettysburg College, and M.A. in Counseling Psychology at Lewis & Clark College.

Kendra has a unique connection to adoption, cherishes family time with her husband, sons, and rambunctious blonde shepherd, and runs, gardens, and bakes in her spare moments.

Certified in Therapeutic Life Story Work (TLSWi)

Email: tferguson@nwresource.org

Phone: 503-241-0799 extension 12

A 2017 Angel in Adoption for Senator Merkley, Toni Ferguson came to ORPARC in 2007 from Portland State University's Graduate School of Social Work and Child Welfare Partnership where she was an instructor for 6 years. While there she was instrumental in the development of the Post Graduate Certificate Program in Therapy with Adoptive & Foster Families and remains on the advisory committee. Prior to that position, Toni was a member of the innovative Post Adoption Family therapist Team (PAFT) at ODHS, where she provided highly specialized, intensive treatment services to adoptive families of special needs children. Before PAFT, Toni had acquired over 20 years' experience in education and child welfare systems including the positions of Permanency Worker, Foster Home Certifier, School Social Worker, and Adoptive/Foster Parent Trainer. Toni has earned PSU’s Post Graduate Certificate in Adoptive & Foster Family Therapy and has completed Trust Based Relational Intervention 101 (TBRI®). Toni's B.S. degrees are in Psychology and Sociology from Portland State University, and she holds a MSW from the School of Social Work and Child Welfare at Walla Walla College.

Toni and her husband have raised six children through birth and adoption who are now thriving adults, and who have given Toni the joy of grandchildren.

Email: mmcgrorty@nwresource.org

Phone: 503-241-0799 extension 11

Se habla español

With ORPARC since 2001, Michael works with the office technology, designs publications, coordinates trainings, handles reporting and finances, and oversees the office facilities, a role he has built upon and maximized in his many years at ORPARC. His specializations and focus areas include LGBTQ issues, cultural diversity, and the Adoption Tax Credit. As the Bilingual Family Support Specialist to adoptive and foster Spanish-speaking families, he continues to develop and deliver Spanish language trainings to Spanish-speaking/Latino audiences throughout Oregon.

In his free time, Michael enjoys homelife with his pets and traveling to Florida and Latin American destinations, as well as teaching and speaking Spanish with friends.

Descripción en español

Miembro del equipo de ORPARC desde 2001, Michael trabaja con la tecnología de la oficina, diseña las publicaciones, coordina los entrenamientos [clases de capacitación], se encarga de los informes y las finanzas, y se encarga de la oficina y facilidades, un papel que ha llevado a cabo y maximizado durante muchos años con ORPARC. Las áreas de especialización y enfoque de él incluyen asuntos con la comunidad LGBT (lesbiana, gay, bisexual y transgénero), la diversidad cultural, y el Crédito Fiscal Federal de Adopción. Como Especialista Bilingüe en Apoyo Familiar a las familias adoptivas y familias de crianza hispanohablantes, él sigue desarrollando y presentando entrenamientos en español al público hispanohablante/latino por todo Oregón.

En su tiempo libre, Michael disfruta su vida cotidiana con sus mascotas, y viajando a varios destinos en la Florida y Latinoamérica, además de enseñar y hablar español con amigos.

Certified in Therapeutic Life Story Work (TLSWi)

Email: agould@nwresource.org

Phone: 503-241-0799 extension 19

Having joined ORPARC in 2014, Arah helps manage and coordinate ORPARC's private online support groups as well as the curating of the specialty library, in addition to supporting families. Arah has counseled in private practice since 2005, including previous work with a diverse population at the YWCA counseling center. Arah's experience and specialties include post-graduate training in humanistic/existential psychotherapy, mindfulness and psychotherapy, maternal mental health and perinatal mood disorders, and trauma therapy using various modalities. Arah has volunteered with the Returning Veterans Project and with Yoga Calm, a therapeutic movement program for children. Arah is licensed with the Oregon Board of Licensed Professional Counselors and Therapists, has completed Trust Based Relational Intervention 101 (TBRI®), and has earned PSU’s Post Graduate Certificate in Adoptive & Foster Family Therapy. She is currently completing the nationalTraining in Adoption Competency certification through C.A.S.E. She holds a B.A. in Cultural Anthropology from University of Oregon and M.A. in Counseling Psychology from Pacifica Graduate Institute.

Arah enjoys time with her husband and two older children, exploring the outdoors, playing silly games, and eating special meals together.

Certified in Therapeutic Life Story Work (TLSWi)

Email: adenninghille@nwresource.org

Phone: 503-241-0799 extension 18

Se habla español

Annie came to ORPARC in 2018 with a background in serving youth and families experiencing developmental disabilities and mental health challenges. Annie helps monitor ORPARC's online parent support group, and is skilled in working both in and out of home with families, schools, and community support teams to assess challenging behaviors and create positive behavior support plans. With a special interest in working with individuals with Autism, Annie also speaks Spanish and is passionate about supporting parents and families through all the stages of parenting. Annie is licensed with the Oregon Board of Licensed Professional Counselors and Therapists, has completed Trust Based Relational Intervention 101 (TBRI®), and has earned PSU’s Post Graduate Certificate in Adoptive & Foster Family Therapy. Annie is also currently completing the national Training in Adoption Competency certification through C.A.S.E. She earned her B.S. in Psychology from Gonzaga University and her M.S. in Marriage and Family Therapy from Seattle Pacific University.

Annie enjoys cooking, hiking, practicing yoga, and spending time with her husband, two sons, and their newly rescued dog, Stella.

Certified in Therapeutic Life Story Work (TLSWi)

Email: nrussell@nwresource.org

Phone: 503-241-0799 extension 15

With ORPARC since 2009, and having recently returned to the program after two years of service as a Resource Specialist and Family Education Coordinator with one of ORPARC's close training partners Swindell's Resource Center, Nicole has spent the majority of her professional career in a combination of post adoption services and/or family support work. Her past and current role at ORPARC includes facilitating Oregon’s annual Shoulder to Shoulder child welfare conference and coordinating the new Training in Adoption Competency program. She has earned PSU's Post Graduate Certificate in Adoptive & Foster Family Therapy, and is in the process of completing Trust Based Relational Intervention 101 (TBRI®). A recipient of NASW's 2009 Community Based Practice Award, Nicole has worked as a trainer for Cascadia Training, and for local childcare centers. Prior to ORPARC, she worked within a school-based mental health program in behavior-supported elementary school classrooms, conducted parenting classes and skills training, and was both a youth director and Head Start teacher. Nicole earned her B.A. in Social Work at Gordon College and her MSW at Portland State University.

Nicole has been touched by adoption personally, inspiring her work in the adoption field. Nicole savors her time with her husband, dog Buckley, and her two growing girls.

Certified in Therapeutic Life Story Work (TLSWi)

Email: rstein@nwresource.org

Phone: 503-241-0799

Rachel began at ORPARC in 2015 as an undergraduate student intern and transitioned to staff soon after. After 4 years she left ORPARC to finish her education and in 2020 she returned to the Oregon Adoption Resource Exchange (OARE) program to continue offering support. She identifies as a transracial adult adoptee which ignites her passion in providing mental health services to children and families who have also been touched by foster care and adoption. She is currently a LPC Registered Intern with the Oregon Board of Licensed Professional Counselors and Therapists. She earned her B.A. in Psychology from Lewis & Clark College and her M.A. in Professional Mental Health Counseling from Lewis & Clark Graduate School of Education and Counseling.

In her free time, Rachel enjoys spending time exploring the great outdoors, culinary creating in the kitchen, moving her body through yoga and rock climbing, and quality time with her partner, two cuddly & sassy kitties, and two beloved rescue dogs adopted from Korea.

Email: clund@nwresource.org

Phone: 503-241-0799

Chloe came to ORPARC in 2018 as an intern from Portland State University’s Child, Youth, and Family Studies program and joined the team as a part time Library Assistant in 2019. Having worked with families ranging from the prenatal stage to end of life, Chloe brings a life course perspective to her work and currently supports vulnerable elders and seniors through her role at another agency. She is particularly curious about parent development and education, with plans to become certified as a Family Life Educator through the National Council on Family Relations. Meanwhile, she continues to work on earning her undergraduate degree at PSU.

In her free time, Chloe enjoys writing, cross-stitching, and spending time with her family, partner, and cat.

Email: mbartel@nwresource.org

Maya first joined ORPARC in 2015 as an intern and later worked as staff. After leaving ORPARC to continue her education at Iowa State University, Maya is returning as a Program Research Assistant this spring (April - June 2021). She has personal experience with adoption and research interests in family life and wellbeing. She is currently in graduate school pursuing a Ph.D. in Human Development and Family Studies. After completing her education, she hopes to continue conducting research and seeks to work with families.

When not working, Maya enjoys reading, cooking, and hiking.

Lily is a Fall 2021 intern from George Washington University pursuing a double major in Human Services & Social Justice and Psychology. Through her studies and previous internship experiences, she has worked with various organizations to support gender equality, early childhood education, and impoverished communities in Puerto Rico and Vietnam. Lily is interested in nonprofit and social work, and as a transracial adoptee herself, she is eager to help support other adoptees, children in foster care, and their families.

In her free time, Lily enjoys horseback riding, baking, traveling, and going to the beach.

Se habla español

Jess is a bilingual intern completing her Child, Youth, and Families undergraduate practicum from Portland State University for the 2021 Fall term. She has taken extensive training and courses in early childhood education that helps support youth across Washington County. Through another agency, she is able to assist families with diverse backgrounds to access needed resources. After completing her education, Jess hopes to continue working with underrepresented populations to bring about structural change to community services.

In her free time, Jess enjoys reading, spending time with her family, and experiencing new things.

Jess es una pasante bilingüe que está completando sus estudios universitarios de Niños, Jóvenes y Familias en la Universidad Estatal de Portland para la temporada de otoño de 2021. Ha tomado varios cursos y amplia capacitación en educación infantil temprana que ayuda a apoyar a los jóvenes en el condado de Washington. A través de otra agencia, ella ayuda a familias de diversos orígenes a acceder a recursos necesarios. Después de completar su educación, Jess espera continuar trabajando con poblaciones subrepresentadas para lograr un cambio estructural en los servicios comunitarios.

En su tiempo libre, a Jess le gusta leer, pasar tiempo con su familia, y experimentar cosas nuevas.

Coming soon!

Macy is currently a 15 year old sophomore at Oregon Episcopal School. She has frequently volunteered in the ORPARC library, and helped out with office tasks. She has previously volunteered in her school library and is currently a member of her city's Youth Advisory Council. Macy is an avid musician, having played the flute and piano for 9 years, and she has participated in many local and national festivals/competitions. At school, she enjoys math and science and is looking to pursue a career in the medical field.

Macy's other hobbies include playing badminton, traveling, and spending time with family and friends.