Amber believes this work is part of her calling and responsibility both as a social worker and an educational leader. She is passionate about fostering equity and eliminating barriers so that all students can show up to the classroom ready and able to learn in a safe and supportive environment. Amber has a heart for teenagers and the incredible joy, resilience and hope they embody. While an Oregon native, Amber spent the majority of her school-age years in Chicago Public Schools. After college, Amber spent three years working at Erie Neighborhood House in Chicago, working with Latinx youth and families. There she absorbed humility, love and passion from that community and strengthened her Spanish language skills and cultural sensitivity. Amber advocated for undocumented workers’ rights and provided case management and mentoring to youth.
Following graduate school, she worked as a homeless family advocate, a middle school mentor coordinator and then spent 13 years managing community-based services in two different public high schools in Portland, Oregon. She offers a rich foundation of social work and mental health expertise, community partnership, supervision and coaching of staff, respected leadership, advocacy for historically underserved populations, and program management.
Amber holds three professional licenses in the state of Oregon: Clinical Social Worker (LCSW), School Social Worker (LSSW) and Principal. She holds a bachelor’s degree in social work (BSW) from Calvin College, and a master’s degree in social work (MSW) from Portland State University. With a passion for social justice and mentoring, she is also a Field Instructor for Portland State University, supervising graduate level social work interns for 12 years.