Laurel comes to Upaya with a breadth of development experience and a passion for exploring innovative solutions to breaking the cycle of poverty.
Before joining Upaya, Laurel worked at the Initiative for Global Development (IGD) promoting business-driven economic growth in Africa. With IGD she conducted research and supported the Communications and Development teams. Prior to that position, she worked with marginalized communities in Central America and the Caribbean. Her focus on underserved populations extended home where she fundraised for the Mid-Valley Women's Crisis Service, tutored at-risk elementary school students and mentored teenage mothers. She also spent two years as a Legislative Aid to Oregon State Senator Ginny Burdick where she worked on Tuition Equity legislation.
Laurel holds a B.A. in Politics and History from Willamette University.