Dancers | 2014

April 1, 2014 · by admin · 2014 Gala, Featured, Stars

2014 DancersPCRI’s 2014 Dancing with the Stars Gala featured five prominent Portland community members (clockwise from top right): Ashley Korslien, Charles McGee, Jennifer Williamson, Ifanyi Bell, and Kelly Russell, each trained by and dancing with professionals from Fred Astaire Dance Studio.  Read more about the 2014 Gala here, including the featured dance by Multnomah County Commissioner Loretta Smith and Metro Councilor Sam Chase.

Ifanyi Bell—Producer, Oregon Public Broadcasting

Ifanyi Bell is an Emmy Nominated producer for Oregon Public Broadcasting and has been creating digital content there since 2011.  A native of Northeast Portland, and a graduate of Lincoln High School, Ifanyi left the Pacific Northwest on his way to a now 10 year career in public media.

Ifanyi’s work covering music, fine arts, books, food and everything in between set the standard for content created for OPB’s Arts and Life web site and pushed the envelope in regards to what is creatively possible at OPB. He has leveraged his community roots and connections to help foster and support community among artists of all types.

In his spare time, Ifanyi is an avid fair-weather cyclist and all around athlete. When he is not on his bike, on the court, or on the field, he enjoys writing and photography.  Covering arts and culture in Portland has given Ifanyi the opportunity to see the way the city and the neighborhoods have evolved and changed over the years, and enjoyed supporting PCRI in its efforts to ensure a positive and equitable community for all Portlanders.

Ashley Korslien—Reporter, KGW Newschannel 8

Ashley Korslien, reporter for KGW Newschannel 8, grew up in beautiful Big Sky Country and is a proud University of Montana Grizzly! Ashley lives and breathes the news, but is most passionate about the people in her community. While working in Montana, Ashley founded a non-profit that helps military veterans and their families in times of need. She is happy to report that several years later, “Angels in Camo” is still going strong! In 2011, the Montana National Guard awarded Ashley the highest honor a civilian can receive. Ashley was given the Distinguished Patriot Medal for her dedication to Montana’s military families.

Ashley’s love for journalism led her to establish a scholarship her senior year of college. The “Professional Promise Award” goes to one broadcast journalism student at the University of Montana every year. Ashley hopes her scholarship will inspire others to give back.

When Ashley isn’t working, you can find her cheering on her Montana Grizzlies, reading, skydiving and trying to teach her two furry children new tricks.

Charles McGee—President and CEO, Black Parent Initiative

Charles McGee, President and CEO of The Black Parent Initiative (BPI), has a unique passion: To create the ultimate community. Named among the most influential African Americans in Oregon and honored as one of Portland Business Journal’s 40 Under 40 in 2012, Charles has a lot to say about leadership, education and public service.

Continuing on the path of his passion, Charles and his close friend Johnell Bell co-founded the Black Parent Initiative in May 2006 as a community-based, culturally specific, family organization. BPI is committed to addressing significant life changes faced by low- to moderate-income Black families in the Portland area by facilitating parent training, informational meetings and support groups to assist parents in providing safety, security and participating in the growth and development of their children.

Charles McGee is the last of five children who all live in inner North/Northeast Portland.

Kelly Russell—Professional Benefit Auctioneer

For PCRI’s Dancing with the Stars gala, Kelly Russell, professional benefit auctioneer, was excited to step in front of the lights in a different role, dancer!

As an accomplished benefit auctioneer, Kelly is an energetic performer who insists every guest have a great time supporting their favorite organizations. A firm believer in FUN, she enjoyed the opportunity to have fun while supporting the families who benefit from PCRI’s housing and services.

With her recent engagement to marry fresh on her mind at the time of the gala, she aimed for her dance steps to dazzle the dance floor at the gala as well as light up her reception along with that infectious smile! LET’S DANCE!

Jennifer Williamson—Oregon State Representative

A 4th generation Oregonian, State Representative Jennifer Williamson knows Oregon is a very special place. Born and raised on a farm in Washington County, Jennifer was taught very early the value of both hard work and education.

Representing Southwest Portland’s District 36 in the Oregon House since 2012, Jennifer first entered the world of politics by accident. While attending the University of Oregon, proposed cuts in financial aid Pell grants and work-study programs threatened to end her academic career before it had really started. Unwilling to let go of her dream of a college education, she became an education activist. This path led her to Washington D.C. to work for Senator Mark O. Hatfield to ensure all Oregonians have access to higher education. She went on to receive her law degree, cum laude, from Willamette University.

Jennifer practiced law in Portland at the law firm Davis Wright Tremaine. She worked at Portland State University as the Assistant Vice President for Communications and Public Affairs. And she served on Superintendent Susan Castillo’s executive team at the Oregon Department of Education.

Jennifer is married to Paul Loving, a business attorney. They live in NW Portland with their dog Hamilton. Jennifer’s stepdaughter is a student at the University of Oregon.

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