Meet Our People
Chris is on a mission to make the world better for people affected by homelessness and poverty. Since graduating from the State University of New York at Oneonta in 2007, Chris has worked many different jobs in the field of homeless services and activism, but also as a musician, writer, and even paralegal. He started The Other Ones Foundation in the summer of 2017 to bring his innovative ideas for addressing homelessness to life.
Chief Operating officer
Joe is a passionate and dedicated leader to our neighbors experiencing homelessness. After leaving a career in public safety, Joe has turned his efforts to fighting homelessness in Austin and advocating for the people he serves.
Chief strategy officer
As the Chief Strategy Officer, Elizabeth Baker serves to develop, implement and monitor strategic plans to drive TOOF's mission. Elizabeth comes to TOOF with 11 years of experience in homeless, housing, substance use and mental health services. As a Licensed Clinical Social Worker, she brings skills in social interventions and systemic change to elevate TOOF's operations and collaborative involvement in the continuum of homeless and housing care in Austin.
Chief Financial Officer
Kris Wade is a Quickbooks nerd with a passion for community involvement. From volunteer income tax assistance to his 15 years as a professional musician, he is always thankful to contribute to organizations who value their products, processes, and most importantly, their people.
OUTREACH & DIVERSION
David has been involved in community-based mental health service development and delivery since 1976.
He has provided these services to very diverse population groups.
For 5 years he worked with truant, paint-sniffing youth and their families providing individual, group and family therapy wherever the individuals felt most comfortable. Many times there were more individuals who used drugs as a coping mechanism in the family which required teaching different skills to the entire family.
He assisted with the implementation of the State Case Management roll-out in Houston serving recidivists of the State Mental Health Hospitals to try and help them integrate back into the community system of care.
He has worked with youth returning from TDC who could not return home and helped them and their new foster families learn how to co-exist, deal with issues as
they came up and develop a plan for the youth to remain in the community.
In 1992 he returned to Austin and ATCMHMR, and worked as a family worker with the federally funded Family Preservation Program. He provided family therapy at
their home as a way to help them develop family-specific tools to keep them
together and provide for them a way to live more harmoniously.
In 1994 he began working specifically with individuals who are homeless with the
PATH/ACCESS Program. He has worked and grown the Program to include a
Safe Haven Program and to ensure that the agency play an integral part in the
Continuum of Care in the Austin Travis County Community.
In 2021 he joined The Other Ones Foundation to continue to do the work he has dedicated his life to. Outreach and engagement of disenfranchised individuals are his love and expertise. His programs have helped many individuals feel re-connected to a system that gives them hope that things can get better.
He is involved in many community processes to better the situation for individuals who are homeless in Austin Travis County.
SAFETY & SECURITY
Duane is responsible for Safety and Security, as well as hiring, training, and scheduling for all security personnel.
Duane has many years of extensive experience in the areas of healthcare safety and security, casino and hotel security, as well as retail and transportation security. Duane holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree from Rowan University in Glassboro, New Jersey and an Associate Degree in Criminal Justice from Camden County College in Blackwood, New Jersey.
RELATIONSHIPS & GIVING
Rev. Jared Slack comes to The Other Ones Foundation after 17 years of service in the local church. Most recently he was the Pastor for Missional and Spiritual Formation at The First Baptist Church of Austin where his wife still works and he remains a very content parishioner.
Jared brings with him a gift for effective communication and a passion for offering others the opportunity to participate in the vision and mission of The Other Ones Foundation.
Phil Leal, LCSW
Phil graduated from Texas State University with a Master’s in Social Work. Phil is a native Austinite with years dedicated to social services in Austin and also a founding member of The Other Ones Foundation. Throughout his Social Work career, Phil has served populations in a hospital setting, hospice, within the Money Management Program with Family Eldercare, and served some of the most vulnerable of Austin’s homeless population with the Homelessness Outreach Street Team (HOST).
DIRECTOR OF QUALITY & DATA
Gwen has 15+ years of experience contributing to the continuous improvement of human service programs. She has worked for Any Baby Can, Foundation Communities, and the Texas Department of Housing & Community Affairs to analyze and report data on program outcomes for grants and contracts, and manage and improve processes. She collaborates with direct service providers to ensure completeness of documentation, quality of data, and compliance with regulations.
DIRECTOR OF FACILITIES & FLEET
I am a Houston native that that finally got to make Austin my home. I have been in Utility Construction and Repair for the past 12 years and 2020 gave me the push to chase my dreams. I am now a sociology major and look forward to this next stage of life.
I have been married to my beautiful wife for 16 years and have 5 incredible kids. I love traveling with my family, photography, nature, motorcycles, and jeeps.
WORKFORCE FIRST PROGRAM manager
Over the last twenty years, Iris has focused her Social Worker Career on delivering quality services to the community working with the Federal and Local Government And Non- Profit organizations within the United States, The caribbean and Europe. She worked in different disciplines including Life Coaching, Program Development. Outreach, Management, Event Planning and as a Behavioral health Specialist she has been able to assist numerous individuals and families in their successful long- term stabilization. Her experience includes developing and implementing life- enrichment care plans, training, recruitment, job placement, Social work and as a Court System Specialist with the Juvenile System and the Adult Correctional system for 12 years she was successfully recognized for transforming lives.
Iris enjoys outdoor activities, music concerts, cooking, skydiving, Rock climbing, loves traveling and learning new languages is one of her favorite hobbies, Her happy places are the Ocean and the sky. Flying airplanes is her passion. Enjoying life to the fullest and helping others is her motivation to succeed.
Max has honed his communication and media knowledge in the music industry, and is excited about bringing those skills to the table at TOOF. Distilling complex topics and cultivating community support are at the core of the communications work Max does for TOOF.
Max has always had a heart for service, volunteering from a young age and always working to help his community when possible. He is enjoying the ride of finding his role in the world of social service at The Other Ones Foundation.
Our Board of Directors
Texas Homeless Network
Currently the Assistant Director of Planning at the Texas Homeless Network, but coming from a decade long career in direct service, Jim understands the pressures on the ground when working to end homelessness. Please consider him your ally in the fight to end homelessness.
Melanie currently serves as treasurer for The Others Ones Foundation Inc. She has a background in finance, and she has worked as a financial consultant and bank manager. Prior to that she did Festival and event production. Volunteering and serving her community has been a priority of hers for the past 20 years. In her free time she enjoys her family, dogs and garden.
Board of Directors
Round Rock Parks and Recreation
Rachel Morris is passionate about building resilience through meaningful and sustainable community spaces. As a landscape architect and project manager for the City of Round Rock’s Parks and Recreation Department, Rachel understands how to engage a wide variety of stakeholders and work collaboratively to design solutions that serve individuals, communities, and the environment. Rachel holds a Bachelor Degree in Landscape Architecture from Texas A&M University, with a minor in Urban and Regional Planning.
Board of Directors
Blue Sky Partners
Matt is a native Texan with fifteen years of experience in the nonprofit community and another ten in consulting and start-ups. Matt started his campaign working in political and civic campaigns across the country working at every level of government.
After a half decade on the road, Matt moved back to his native state and because working for non-profits and local candidates in San Antonio. In 2009, Matt was recruited and hired by Representative Pete Gallego to lead his natural resources legislation and run his communication. After successfully working in research, communication, policy, and campaign management, Matt, with two others, opened his first consulting agency in 2010 and successfully launched GNI Consulting.
Matt spent 7 years as a non-profit Executive Director and launched Progress Texas, the Texas affiliate of ProgressNow and served as the ED of the Austin Young Chamber of Commerce. Most recently, he was the Regional General Manager for WeWork in Central Texas and launched Blue Sky Partners.
Matt brings a rich and diverse background of working closely with Boards of Directors and nonprofit staff to meet community need with mission alignment and approaches organizational growth with an entrepreneurial mindset. He has served as the Vice-Chair on the Skillpoint Alliance Board and has been a 10-year volunteer at the Annette Strauss Institute. He has an undergraduate degree from Trinity University in San Antonio and a Master of Science Technology and Commercialization from the University of Texas.
Board of Directors
Lefkowitz & Haire PLLC
Amy Lefkowitz grew up in Lubbock, TX. Her father, Mark Paden, is a career musician and still lives and plays music in Lubbock. Amy and her husband Michael, also a musician, have lived in Austin for the past 16 years. Prior to pursuing academia, Amy worked for many years in the restaurant and entertainment businesses. In addition to growing up in Lubbock, Amy has also called Nashville, Scottsdale, and Los Angeles home.
Amy graduated Summa Cum Laude from Huston-Tillotson College (now University) in 2004 with a Bachelor of Arts in Biology. She worked in the field of pharmaceutical research for five years before starting law school in 2009. Amy graduated with her law degree from St. Mary’s University in San Antonio in 2011 and was licensed to practice law in May of 2012.
Board of Directors
Brandon Shopp is the Vice President of Product at SolarWinds. He served as our Director of Product Management since November 2011, assuming the title and responsibilities of Senior Director of Product Management in July 2013. Prior to SolarWinds, Shopp was the Vice President of Product Management at AlienVault, from August 2016 until February 2018 and the Senior Director of Products at Embarcadero Technologies, from July 2015 until August 2016. He has a proven success record in product delivery and revenue growth, with a wide variety of software product, business model, M&A, and go-to-market strategies experience. Shopp holds a B.B.A. from Texas A&M University.
Board of Directors
Rhie Azzam Morris
Rhie is an educator and leader in racial equity work, an organizer, and a thought partner and strategist in addressing and working towards a better world for all. She evolved into a tireless anti-racist activist and community organizer as a teen and has carried that work with her in all
aspects of her life for over 20 years.
Rhie discovered a need to make the world around her a more just and equitable place during her life as a homeless youth. Having worked with LifeWorks in Austin as the Coordinator of the Austin Youth Collective, Rhie worked on an initiative with community partners and the City of Austin to bring an end to youth homelessness.
Rhie has developed and led trainings on the impact of trauma on youth experiencing
homelessness and how providers can build authentic relationships, presented nationally on creating equity in the homeless response system by opening pathways to collaboration with young people experiencing homelessness, and has worked with Dell Medical School to create an educational tool for their Understanding Homelessness course.
Rhie served as co-chair the Austin/Travis County Continuum of Care’s Equity Task Force, as well as served as a core team member for Austin’s HUD Race Equity Demonstration Project (now the HUD CE Race Equity Initiative) team. Through her work with the Austin team, Rhie was invited to serve as a Subject Matter Expert in the intersections of race and lived expertise and is now supporting other communities in the round 1 cohort.
Rhie now works as a Technical Assistance provider working in homelessness nationally as a coach and technical assistance provider on the Youth Homelessness Demonstration Program and the Coordinated Entry Race Equity Initiative.
Board of Directors
Karen Dorrier, LCSW-S graduated with a Master’s Degree in Social Work from the University of Houston in 2000. Karen has over 23 years’ experience working as a service provider within our Public Mental Health System, 17 of these years have been with Integral Care. Karen has had a long history working within Integral Care’s Crisis Services Division starting with the program development and management of the Mobile Crisis Outreach Team (MCOT) in 2007 followed by the management of Psychiatric Emergency Services (PES) and the Hotline. Prior to returning to Integral Care in 2015, Karen was the Director of Crisis Services at Bluebonnet Trails Community Health Center where she was responsible for the planning, development and supervision of Crisis Services in an eight county region along with the program development, management and implementation of a 48-hour Extended Observation Unit.
Throughout her career in Crisis Services, Karen recognized the impact of homelessness on a person’s mental and physical health. In 2015 Karen returned to Integral Care to work in the Housing and Homeless Services Division to address these issues and the “crisis” of homelessness; initially working on the PATH team and now in the development and management of the Homeless Outreach Street Team (HOST), an innovative partnership between the City of Austin and Integral Care. Karen is a fierce advocate in the fight to end homelessness and has used her experience and understanding of the systemic issues that cause and perpetuate homelessness to further ignite her passion and advance her work in the Social Work field.