Our Staff

RACHAEL HOLLAND

rachaelRachael, affectionately known as “The Fearless Leader” to her staff, worked as a barista, wedding photographer, nanny, corporate manager, trainer, and numerous other people-oriented positions before discovering her passion in life when she began working with adults with developmental disabilities. Her desire to help people in need, and the community at large, led her to establish Pacific Opportunities in 2009. Since then, her once one-woman show now staffs several employees and has assisted hundreds of adults with employment barriers in the Portland Metro area.

Contrary to popular belief, Rachael does not work twenty-four hours per day. In fact, she’s been known to watch documentaries, paddle board in Maui, sing, or make improvements to her 1939 Tudor home while accompanied by beautiful twin girls. She is, however, always looking to lend a hand, listen, or otherwise help anyone who may be in need.

KIMM STEWART

kimmIn her role as Operations Manager, Kimm is known for instilling confidence in her clients while helping them place structure and accountability into their work and/or job search. She has an innate gift for helping clients discover the tools they need to be successful before and during their quest for employment.

Kimm left her sweet home of Alabama to obtain a degree in journalism from Boston University. After spending a decade in the dry Arizona desert as a technical copy editor for environmental consulting firms and a few small magazines, she relocated to the rainy Pacific Northwest, a climate better suited to her temperament. On the rare day when she hasn’t a million things to do, you can find her on the couch sipping tea, eating cookies, and cuddling cats while crocheting.

Janet_308x255JANET HERNANDEZ

After receiving her degree in culinary arts, Janet spent over 10 years working in and managing restaurants. Her passion for helping her employees succeed in their positions, and a past working relationship with Rachael Holland, led her to Pacific Opportunities to do just that. As a job developer, she utilizes the people skills she’s honed over her career to help each and every client discover their own passion and pursue it in their job search.

Her love of travel guided Janet cross country from her home of New York to Oregon. She loved it so much she stayed! The travel bug is still alive and well, however, and she never turns down an opportunity to discover some place new. When in town, Janet enjoys home improvement projects and entertaining for family and friends, putting her culinary arts degree to good use.

SHALEN PARKERShalen bio photo

Shalen has worked in human resources for two of Portland’s most iconic employers: Powell’s Books and McMenamins. He brings a wealth of recruiting, restaurant, and retail knowledge to the team. His management and operations experience in various business environments give him unique insight regarding employers’ needs. As a job developer, his inclusive and supportive nature provides constructive job opportunities and a strong foundation for client development and growth during employment.

A native of the Pacific Northwest, Shalen dutifully fills up the seasons with outdoor activities such as bicycling, hiking, and snowboarding. In between excursions, he can be found playing guitar, reading, or watching an English soccer match. He also has developed a mildly concerning obsession with table shuffleboard.

jessicaJESSICA BREECE

While volunteering overseas, Jessica discovered a passion for helping those with disabilities — so much so, that upon her return to Oregon she decided to make it a career. In her role as a Discovery Specialist and Job Coach, Jessica utilizes those skills and tools she has developed in her 8 years of work to bring out the best in clients and watch them grow in ways they never imagined.

In her down time, Jessica often finds herself in search of a new consignment shop, curling up with a good book in the winter, or going for hikes in the Columbia Gorge with her wife and friends.

KELLY RALPH

KellyAfter a 20-year career in mortgage banking, Kelly decided that a return to school was in order and received her master’s in Adult Education. A strong sense of justice and an urge to help others led her to Pacific Opportunities. In her role as a client portfolio and preparation specialist, Kelly utilizes a positive attitude, creative thinking, and advanced skills of organization to ensure each client has a great resume as well as the interviewing skills they need to get the job they desire.

Kelly loves spending her off time seeing live music, especially blues, taking photographs, or hiking one of Portland’s many beautiful trails. If time allows, you can be sure she’ll be camping near the Gorge or the Oregon Coast.

REBECCA ERKSA

RebeccaA social butterfly from a young age, Rebecca has always loved being around people and helping them to discover new strengths about themselves. She has worked with people of all ages and with all types of disabilities and is currently pursuing a degree in counseling. As Pacific Opportunities’ community-based work assessment supervisor, Rebecca teaches clients new skills in a real employment setting and provides invaluable feedback to help clients improve their employability.

Before coming to Pacific Opportunities, Rebecca spent several years living and working in the Caribbean and traveling abroad. She is a mother of two amazing young daughters and an adorable pug. She loves to hang out with her family most of all and just plain likes to have fun!

ANDREA ESPINOSA

Andrea
After spending 2016 in Buffalo, New York, working at an international preparatory school, Andrea found herself ready to return home to the Pacific Northwest and settle back into life surrounded by Douglas fir trees. She is passionate about education and working with vulnerable populations, which is why she loves working at Pacific Opportunities as a job developer assistant and employment specialist. Since obtaining her Social Science degree from Portland State, Andrea has worked at a few non-profits in Portland and New York and has also been a respite care provider and educational assistant for Portland Public Schools. In her free time, Andrea loves to hang around outside, travel, listen to music, attend shows, and volunteer at local Saturday Markets. She also loves to drink kombucha and pet animals!