Community Advisory Council

Community Advisory Council

Care for the community, by the community

Comprised of members of the Health Share community, Health Share's Community Advisory Council helps us innovate and collaborate to respond to consumer and community health needs, while supporting our mission to achieve ongoing transformation, health equity, and the best possible health for each individual. The Council is chartered by the Health Share of Oregon Board of Directors.

The Council’s contributions include overseeing the development of our Community Health Needs Assessment and Community Health Improvement Plan, and serving as a liaison between the community and Health Share leadership. 

The Council holds quarterly public meetings, including two joint, public meetings with the Board of Directors. Check back soon for more information.

Join Health Share's Community Advisory Council!

How to Join

What's the commitment?

  • Attend one monthly, two-hour meeting
  • Agree to be on the Council for 3 years

Council member supports

  • Stipend
  • Transportation
  • Interpretation

What will you do?


For questions or help filling out the application, contact Maria Tafolla.

CAC Recruitment Flyer


Health Share is committed to providing reasonable accommodation for any disability that would otherwise prevent Council members from actively participating in this process. 

Please email or call 503-416-3668 for an accommodations request.

Thank you for your interest in helping Health Share improve the health of our community. We need people like you who are willing to use their voice to make a difference.

Our 2018 Council members:

LaKeesha Dumas

Lakeesha is one of the Office of Consumer Engagement coordinators for Multnomah County’s Mental Health and Addiction Services Division. She comes with a wealth of knowledge and lived life experience; she is in recovery from substance use disorder and mental health. LaKeesha is certified by the state as a Community Health Worker and a Peer Support Specialist through the Oregon Health Authority. She started working with systems when she was part of the Warriors of Wellness (WOW) Project through Health Share, Kaiser Permanente, ORCHWA, and five community based organizations focused on well child checks and mental health. 

Through her advocacy for culturally specific mental health services for those on the Oregon Health Plan, she was the recipient of the Oregon Public Health Association’s 2014 Emerging Leader Award. After that, she worked with Care Oregon for multiple years, providing peer support services to their members contracted through the Urban League of Portland and the African American Health Coalition. Born and raised in Portland, she has seen the gentrification, gang violence, drug epidemic, and trauma faced by her community. Since being in recovery, she has worked tirelessly for her community to give them hope and get them the appropriate resources to become healthier, overcome barriers, and recover.

Candice Jimenez

Candice Jimenez is a citizen of the Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs. She began her career in public health when she joined the Northwest Portland Area Indian Health Board and worked on the Native CARS (Children Always Ride Safe) and TOTS (Toddler Obesity and Tooth Decay Study) to Tweens studies. She has experience in qualitative data analysis, tribal community data collection, qualitative data coding and reporting, and coordinating communications between tribes and project investigators. Mrs. Jimenez has also been active in policy development for the Oregon Health Authority, an advisory council member for FamilyCare and OSU College of Public and Human Sciences, as well as a volunteer/internship at several health care, public health, and natural resources organizations.

Mrs. Jimenez has a passion for serving the surrounding tribal communities present in the Portland metro area, as well as advocating for culturally appropriate healthcare for all populations. Candice and her husband live in Portland with their son and daughter. They enjoy hiking, mountain biking, camping, traveling, and exploring the food culture throughout the city.

Maria Hermsen

Maria was born and raised in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, until she moved to Portland when she was 18 to attend Reed College. She has worked for nonprofit organizations for the last five years and is currently working as a program manager for Youth M.O.V.E. Oregon in Clackamas County, providing drop in peer support for system wary young people ages 14-25. Maria is passionate about empowering youth to create change in the systems they are involved with and advocating for and amplifying youth voice within those systems. She is excited to serve on Health Share's Community Advisory Council to represent the communities she is a part of and collaborate with a diverse group of people for a common goal.

Erin Jolly

Erin Jolly, MPH, is a senior program coordinator in the Health Equity, Planning and Policy Program at Washington County Public Health. She coordinates community health improvement planning, performance management, quality improvement, accreditation, and the school based health center program. She earned her bachelor's degree from Mills College in Oakland, California, and her Masters of Public Health from Portland State University. 

Erin participated in the 2014 National Leadership Academy for the Public's Health and the 2016 Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Quality Improvement Leaders Academy Program. She is the Washington County representative on the Council and hopes to provide connection between Washington County Health and Human Services, the Washington County Community Health Improvement Plan, and the Council.

Abigail J. Lawrence

Abigail was born on the South Side of Chicago to parents who worked for the civil rights movement. Her father worked side by side with Martin Luther King Jr. and Jesse Jackson—protesting, boycotting, and marching for equal rights. After moving to South Carolina, Abigail’s mother started the first abused women’s shelter and often would take her on adventures of running into a dwelling to grab what they could and get back into the car with a "friend" that would be staying with them for a while. It was not until later that Abigail realized they were getting these women out of horrific domestic situations. Fighting for the equity of all is in her blood. 

A recent health scare brought Abigail to work with the incredible people at North by Northeast, a clinic that specializes in African American health issues with a focus on high blood pressure and diabetes. She was offered an opportunity to volunteer for North by Northeast’s Patient Wellness Council and jumped at the chance to spread the word of how important preventative health checks are to the community. Abigail is now in her third year on the Council and looks forward to bringing to fruition the ideas we share for a healthier community. She is excited to have the opportunity to work with the Council to learn and share ideas for a more informed and healthier Oregon.

West Livaudius  

West is the founder and director of the Oregon Spinal Cord Injury Connection, a grassroots, community based health initiative supporting and reaching out to people with spinal cord injuries. He currently works at the OHSU Office of Disability and Health. (Full biography coming soon!)

Philip Mason

Philip Mason, MPH, has worked for the accredited Clackamas County Public Health Division for five years. As operations manager, his role is to provide leadership for Clackamas County’s Center for Public Health Advancement. The Center provides health data information, policy development and recommendations, research, emergency preparedness and medical services and public health communications to partners so they can access the tools they need to improve the health priorities within their community. 

Philip is responsible for coordinating the organization’s performance management system, quality improvement activities, and health equity initiatives. He received his MPH from Portland State University and a bachelor’s degree from Oregon State University in Health Management and Policy. Philip previously worked at Multnomah County Health Department’s Emergency Preparedness and Response Program and Oregon Health and Science University’s Center for Policy and Research in Emergency Medicine.

Mayra Merino Rendon  

Mayra is a governance member of Clackamas County’s Early Learning Hub and an active member of its Parent Advisory Committee. Most recently, she worked as an Oregon Health Plan assister with Northwest Family Services reaching out to the Latino/a community in Clackamas County. (Full biography coming soon!)

Ben Solheim

Born in South Korea and adopted at the age of 12, Ben has spent the past 20 years devoting his life to helping others and working with diverse groups of individuals. Ben’s experience includes working extensively with at risk youth, sexually exploited youth, homeless youth, families, couples, and individuals suffering from severe and persistent mental illness. Ben is a father and a partner, which provides a well rounded perspective on life through his experiences, vocation and various roles he plays on daily basis. Currently he works for a non-profit mental health organization, implementing and developing innovative treatment programs that promote independence and autonomy for severe and persistently mentally ill individuals. 

Ben’s position requires him to work with Washington, Multnomah, and Clackamas counties, which provides exposure to various levels and systems of care. Ben believes his first hand knowledge of the current state of mental health care is valuable to the Council. He hopes to bring this experience and knowledge to the table to improve care for all. Ben is also a licensed professional counselor in the state of Oregon, having received a M. Ed. in mental health counseling from Seattle University in 2008.

Oliviah Walker

Oliviah Walker is a member of the Meskwaki Nation and has worked on behalf of communities of color and indigenous communities through nonprofit and local government work in Iowa, Minnesota, and Oregon. Currently, she works as a senior policy analyst and community engagement liaison with the Multnomah County Public Health Department, where she is focused on improving health equity through systems change and community driven policy. 

Her previous and current volunteer experiences include mentoring youth, organizing youth workers, serving as a board member for courageous heARTS and Native Youth Alliance of Minnesota, and serving on various advisory committees including her current commitments to Health Share and Metro's Committee on Racial Equity. She also completed the Oregon LEAD leadership cohort through the Coalition of Communities of Color and serves on the steering committee. She enjoys spending time with her husband and two young children, and in her tribal and urban native communities, as well as hiking new trails in the Pacific Northwest.

Recent CAC meetings