Emily McLain and Oregon Student Foundation
Emily, a native of Forest Grove, first got involved with the Oregon Student Association in 2006 when, as a junior at the University of Oregon, she sat on their student board of directors. She served as the state affairs director of the Associated Students of the University of Oregon and cut her political teeth by running a 2006 midterm vote campaign with OSA. When she became student body president at the U of O as a senior, Emily transitioned to leading the OSA board as its chair.
She started working as OSA staff right after she graduated in 2008, first serving as the communications director, then the legislative director. She assumed her current position as executive director in the summer of 2010.
Quite obviously, Emily is more than committed to the work that OSA does in Oregon. "I'm so proud of OSA as being such a consistent and quality advocate for students and a place where students and young people are really in charge." She points to the sheer numbers to show OSA's impact in the state: they've registered over 110,000 people to vote in just the last ten years.
As OSA continues to work to keep tuition affordable and put student priorities at the forefront of legislators' minds, Emily is excited to work with other Oregon Voice table members to enhance OSA's expertise and capacity through trainings and collaborative learning. OSA staff have so far participated in four trainings and are valuable members of the CAP (Collaborative Action Planning) program.
"With other Oregon Voice members, we're building our collective voice by being strategic, by crossing urban/rural divides, and by crossing issue divides," she says. "We're really creating a core of organizations in Oregon that are fighting for equity."
OSA, with Emily at the healm, has big plans for voter registration and GOTV work in 2012, which will be followed by continued work on behalf of students at the legislature in 2013, including a campaign for tuition equity along with other OV table members. Thanks, Emily, for all of your hard work and leadership!