Oregon Student Voice is a nonprofit organization led by a team of high school students and a board of directors. Our board of directors is made up of a majority youth between the ages of 18 and 22 in order to ensure that students remain at the center of OSV’s decision making. Meet the Leadership Team here.
meet the board members
Abigail Alvarez is a junior at Santa Clara University studying political science and Spanish. Before becoming the Chair of the Board of Directors until 2021, Abby was one of the founding high school members of OSV and oversaw its transition to becoming an independent 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. At her school, Abby leads a labor rights group called Advocacy for Workers on Campus and serves as a Class Senator. She is the student representative on the university’s Task Force for the Prevention of Unlawful Harassment and Discrimination and she chairs the Committee for Social Change. Abby is passionate about public policy and social justice and has spent her last two summers in Washington DC and Sacramento doing immigration and criminal justice policy advocacy. After undergrad, she plans to go to law school and eventually run for office.
Dana Smiley graduated from Lincoln High School in Portland, Oregon. In high school, she served as OSV’s Policy Organizer and Co-Executive Director. Dana is now studying Philosophy, Politics, and Law at Emory University, where she is involved with the Ethics and Servant Leadership Forum and serves as an Analyst for Everview Consulting. Dana firmly believes in the power and potential of young people and is deeply committed to uplifting the communities she is a part of in whichever capacity is most needed.
Deja is currently an undergraduate student at Oregon State University pursuing a bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering. She is a part of OSU’s LSAMP and STEM Leaders program who work with historically underserved students as well as a student HR representative for Oregon Health and Science University. She also works as a fellow with Financial Beginnings Oregon to teach financial literacy to youth in the Portland-Metro area. Deja acted as the Amplify Director of Oregon Student Voice and is currently a member of their Board of Directors. Deja has worked closely with Oregon’s representatives to lobby for initiatives, draft policy briefs and letters of support, as well as testify at Oregon’s capitol building in Salem. From this, she has generated partnerships amongst herself and lawmakers in order to sustain a positive impact on the community and act as a voice for underrepresented groups.
Jared Cetz is a first-generation Maya & Mexican-American. Jared is an OSV alumnus and co-founder, and graduated from David Douglas High School in Portland, Oregon. He is currently a first-year at Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island and is thinking about majoring in Ethnic Studies. Jared strongly believes in prioritizing students’ lived experiences and in the intelligence and power of our youth.
Justin Thach graduated from West Salem High School in Salem, Oregon. His passions for racial, educational, and health equity work are rooted in the belief that an understanding of one’s own identity is at the core of political efficacy. He formerly served as OSV’s Communications Coordinator and now studies social policy and enterprise at Stanford University.
Samantha Holquist graduated from Bishop Verot High School in Fort Myers, Florida. Samantha currently works as a researcher at McREL International. For the past five years, she has supported students in becoming strong education advocates and leaders in Oregon, Kentucky, and across the United States. Samantha holds a Ph.D. in Organizational Leadership, Policy, and Development, focusing on student voices in K-12 education policy making. She currently lives in Honolulu, Hawai’i.