Who We Are



Evan A Thomas, PhD, PE, MPH, Associate Professor of Mechanical Engineering and Public Health at Portland State University, GlobalPDX Director

Evan works at the interface of engineering, environmental health and social business, with professional experience working in government, industry, non-profits and academia. Evan holds a Ph.D. in Aerospace Engineering Sciences from the University of Colorado at Boulder, is a registered Professional Engineer (P.E.) in Environmental Engineering in the State of Texas, and holds a Masters in Public Health from the Oregon Health and Science University. Evan is also a social business entrepreneur engaged in global health programs. Evan was a founding volunteer with Engineers Without Borders-USA in 2002, which led to co-founding Manna Energy Limited in 2007. Manna was acquired by DelAgua Health in 2013. In 2012, Evan co-founded SWEETSense Inc. Previously, Evan worked as a civil servant at the NASA-Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas for six years. At NASA, Evan was a principal investigator and project manager in the Life Support and Habitability Systems Branch working on flight hardware for the Space Shuttle, the Space Station, and concepts for Moon and Mars spacecraft.





Marissa Streyle, Coordinator at GlobalPDX

Contact: [email protected]

Marissa has fifteen years of development experience, most recently serving as the Director for Networking and Partnership Development at The Water Institute at The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Her global work in NGOs, government, academia and private foundations influence her approach to international development and her interest in building a network of Oregon’s globally focused organizations and individuals.  Marissa did her undergraduate studies in political science at Texas A&M University and her masters work at the University of Maryland in Public Administration with a concentration on international development. Marissa grew up in St. Louis, and has lived in Texas, Washington, DC and North Carolina before making her way to Portland with her family.






Emily Bedell, Communications at GlobalPDX

Contact: [email protected]

Emily recently graduated with her MS in Mechanical Engineering at Portland State University. Her research involved studying environmental impact assessments using unmanned aerial vehicles for biomass inventory. She worked with The Freshwater Trust, a local Portland conservation nonprofit, to develop a method to study the impact of their riparian restoration efforts in Oregon using a UAV. Moving forward she would like to apply this research to international development projects in order to study their impact on the environment. Emily also has experience in solar hot water manufacturing and processes, power plant engineering, and sustainable HVAC design.






Steering Committee


David Bangsberg, MD, MPH, Founding Dean of the OHSU-PSU School of Public Health

David is a former Professor at Harvard Medical School and Harvard School of Public Health. His work was described by President Bill Clinton as the “nail in the coffin” on the debate as to whether HIV-infected people in sub- Saharan Africa would adhere to antiretroviral medications and neutralized the major criticism to providing multinational funding for global HIV treatment. As Director of Massachusetts General Hospital Global Health, he brought together the expertise of Harvard and MIT to improve physical, mental, social and economic health to the poorest regions of the world in several signature areas, including: HIV care, disaster response, cancer care, and medical technology innovation. He received the Clifford Barger Mentoring Award, given annually to 5 of the 12,000 Harvard Medical School Faculty. He has raised over $70 million dollars to advance public health, was the second highest NIH HIV/AIDS RO-1 funded investigator worldwide in 2008, and has helped over 25 junior investigators secure NIH funding. He is a member of the Association of American Physicians.




Erin Flynn, Associate Vice President for Strategic Partnerships at Portland State University

Erin Flynn is Associate Vice President for Strategic Partnerships at Portland State University. In this role she leads university wide economic development and community engagement initiatives to advance strategic, regional priorities related to economic development, innovation and entrepreneurship, community health and urban sustainability.

On behalf of four regional anchor institutions — PSU, Oregon Health and Sciences University (OHSU), Portland Community College (PCC) and Oregon Museum of Science and Industry (OMSI) — Erin is advancing Portland’s “Innovation Quadrant.” The IQ is envisioned as the geographic nerve center of a flourishing ecosystem that attracts talent, entrepreneurs and investment and propels Portland to global prominence in the cross-collaboration of health, science, and product design.

Erin is actively engaged in state and regional economic and community development. She is Chair of Oregon Innovation Council, the state of Oregon’s innovation and entrepreneurship investment platform, and an Executive Committee member of Greater Portland Inc., the metro region’s public-private partnership for economic development. Prior to joining PSU in 2011, Erin served as Urban Development Director for the City of Portland/Portland Development Commission (2007-2011).

Erin holds a Ph.D. in Political Science from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a BA in Politics from the University of California, Santa Cruz.



Andrea Johnson, Executive Director at Green Empowerment

She combines her experience in international community development, environmental conservation, organizational management and clean energy to advance Green Empowerment’s mission and impact. Andrea got her start in international work in Ecuador, where she served as a Peace Corps Volunteer and trainer. She extended her stay to work with the Ceiba Foundation, Conservation International and the

Ministry of Environment to implement SocioBosque – a REDD+ program that offers payments to landowners to guarantee its conservation over 20 years. After almost four years living in bamboo hut in coastal Ecuador, Andrea landed in Portland where she worked for the Citizens’ Utility Board of Oregon. She later worked as a Program Manager at CLEAResult Consulting where she managed a large-scale residential energy efficiency program. Andrea joined Green Empowerment in early 2016 and she loves that it allows her to continue to live in the great city of Portland while following her passion for community empowerment internationally.




Megan McMorran, Director of Community Engagement and the Mercy Corps Action Center

At the Mercy Corps Action Center the agency engages the public through a variety of programs exploring global issues, including lectures, seminars, exhibits, volunteer program and a robust global education youth program. Entering her eighth year at Mercy Corps, she has a background in journalism and nonprofit administration.



Beth Outterson, Knowledge Management Senior Advisor at Medical Teams International

Beth guides the development of an agency KM strategy. She also builds staff competency in community health by developing online resources, and training field-based Capacity Building champions. Before she became a Portland transplant, Beth worked in Washington, DC as an Adolescent Reproductive Health Advisor at Save the Children, as Health and HIV/AIDS Specialist at the US Peace Corps, and as a health educator with migrant farmworkers. Beth has an MA and MPH from Tulane University, and was a Peace Corps Volunteer in DRC.