Leadership & Board

AYCO has been utilizing grass-roots, strengths-based approaches to engage community members from underrepresented, culturally specific populations since 2009. While AYCO does benefit from the involvement of several interns from Portland State University and staff members who aren’t from the African immigrant and refugee population, most of AYCO’s volunteer and staff are from the very population we serve. AYCO staff and volunteers have experienced first-hand the challenge of family members adjusting differently to their new lives in the U.S. Our constituents are welcomed into a culturally and linguistically familiar environment at AYCO, where dedicated and knowledgeable volunteers and staff address the many gaps and challenges to family adaptation, that too often leave new immigrants feeling overwhelmed and marginalized.

AYCO Leadership

Jamal Dar

Jamal Dar Founder & Executive Director

Askina Sharif

Askina Sharif Program Director

Kelley Pellerin

Kelley Pellerin Staff & Programs Manager

Abdirahman Abdirahman

Abdirahman Abdirahman Program & Partnership Development Manager

Angelica Liliana

Angelica Liliana Development Manager

AYCO Board of Directors

Ziadoon Alsammarraie

Ziadoon Alsammarraie Board Chair

Raife Neuman

Raife Neuman Legal Counsel

Sunshine Dixon

Sunshine Dixon Board Member

Mahad Ahmed

Mahad Ahmed Board Member

Matthew Goldman

Matthew Goldman Board Member