Impact NW’s Leader Named to Governor’s Downtown Task Force

September 27th, 2023

Impact NW’s Executive Director has been appointed by Oregon Gov. Tina Kotek to serve on a task force that will recommend how to revitalize downtown Portland. Andy Nelson will serve on the task force’s housing and homelessness committee.
The task force, composed of a coalition of leaders from business, government, and nonprofits, aims to ignite renewal in the heart of Portland. It plans to recommend immediate solutions to a number of challenges in addition to housing and homelessness. Other nonprofits on the task force include the Urban League of Oregon, Northwest Pilot Project, Blanchet House and Central City Concern.
“I think it’s critical that we bring sustainable, humane and cost-effective solutions to the table,” says Nelson, who has a 25-year affiliation with Impact NW and has served as Executive Director since 2019. “We have to balance the needs of the business and retail community with the very real needs of people who are on the streets. I hope to offer evidence- and practice-based solutions that accelerate what we all want – a vibrant downtown that works for everyone.”
Since its inception in 1966, Impact NW has always taken on the most pressing challenges in the greater Portland area. Today, it’s among the region’s largest and most comprehensive nonprofit organizations dedicated to preventing homelessness. It serves 30,000 people each year and has increased its impact by 83% since the pandemic.
Impact NW has been a vocal advocate for housing and social justice, addressing the needs of vulnerable and underserved populations of both Oregon and Washington. The organization has been instrumental in policy dialogues, contributing testimonies for legislative bills such as Senate Bill 606 and House Bill 2001, addressing Oregon’s urgent housing needs and advocating to modernize grant funding and contracting.
Impact NW is intensifying its advocacy efforts and invites community members to join its Advocacy Group, providing a platform for civil engagement, knowledge sharing, and collective action to prevent homelessness in the Portland area.
To learn more about Impact NW’s Advocacy efforts, click here.