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Board of Directors

Solid Ground Board of Directors, 2015

Board President Cristin Aragon 
Vice President  Justin Hellier
 Alain J. Dias

Secretary  Sean Green

John Babauta | Jon Clarke | D'Adre Cunningham 
Heidi Eisenstein | Ajay Kamath | Anne Kysar 
Lauren E. McGowan | Andrew Miller | Janel Ostrem 
Greg Proulx | Shannon Rae | Christopher M. Villiers 
Wendy Werblin | Sherry Williams

Board Member Bios

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Cristin Aragon

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 Cristin Kent, Solid Ground Board
Cristin Aragon
 is an attorney at Yarmuth Wilsdon PLLC. Her practice focuses on civil litigation in a variety of legal areas, including employment, contract and business disputes. Before joining Yarmuth, Cristin was an attorney in the labor and employment group at K&L Gates LLP. Cristin has devoted much of her practice to pro bono work, including providing advice to nonprofit organizations, representing an individual seeking asylum, and representing individuals seeking redress for discriminatory treatment. Cristin earned a BA in Political Science from Western Washington University and a JD from Seattle University School of Law.

John Babauta

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 John Babauta, Solid Ground Board

John Babauta joined our Board in 2013 and works as a financial professional at the West Seattle location of HomeStreet Bank. He currently holds FINRA series 6 and 63 registrations in addition to life/health insurance licenses in Washington. During his career at HomeStreet, he has held various positions from supervisory roles to investment services and retirement needs analysis. He is passionate about serving his community with an emphasis on low- to moderate-income families and their needs. Outside of volunteering his time to local organizations, John enjoys the outdoors of the Pacific Northwest with his family and friends.

Jon Clarke

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Jon Clarke, Solid Ground Board


Jon Clarke is a Senior Loan Officer with the Enterprise Community Loan Fund, which provides financing for affordable housing and community facilities. Jon previously served as a Senior Program Officer with Impact Capital and as a housing developer for Beacon Development Group, where he managed the development of multiple affordable housing projects for nonprofit and Housing Authority clients throughout Washington State. He also worked as an analyst for the Tax Credit Division of the Washington State Housing Finance Commission. Jon has a BA in Economics from Holy Cross and an MS in Urban Planning from the University of Wisconsin.

D'Adre Cunningham

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D'Adre Cunningham, Solid Ground Board


Ms. D'Adre Cunningham is the Dependency Supervisor at the King County Department of Public Defense – The Defender Association Division. A Cincinnati native, she spent her formative years in Atlanta, Georgia. She is an alumna of Emory University and the University of Washington School of Law and has been a public defender in Seattle since 2001. Her legal experience includes working as a Legal Clerk at the Federal Public Defenders in the Western District of Washington, defending indigent adults in Seattle Municipal and King County Superior Court criminal proceedings, defending  children in juvenile offender proceedings, representing parents and children in child abuse and neglect cases, and advocating for systemic reforms at The Racial Disparity Project.

Alain Dias

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 Alain Dias, Solid Ground Board

Alain Dias is CEO of Dragontail Capital Limited, a private investment firm focused on technology, media/entertainment and digital marketing. The firm specializes in majority buyouts and accretive buildups of software and services companies. Prior, Alain was Managing Partner and COO at Ascentium Corporation with responsibilities for sales and marketing, business operations and corporate development. A widely read authority on the subject of business transformation and coauthor of the seminal industry text “Technology Strategy: Pure & Simple,” Alain has assisted companies and government agencies worldwide in reinventing themselves through technology. Before Ascentium, Alain was a senior director at Interlink Group, where he managed the firm’s strategic consulting group focusing on emerging market trends and strategic technology opportunities for Fortune 500 clients. Alain is a graduate of Georgetown University's School of Foreign Service and the Institut d'Études Politiques de Paris.

Heidi Eisenstein

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 Heidi Eisenstein, Solid Ground Board

Heidi Eisenstein

is a Senior Partner Marketing Manager with Adobe where she is responsible for developing the go-to-market strategies for global alliance partners. Prior to joining Adobe, Heidi spent six years with Microsoft across multiple marketing functions. Heidi also brings with her nearly a decade of service in the nonprofit sector covering a range of issues from education, to refugee justice, to food security. She holds a BA in Economics from the University of California, Santa Cruz and an MBA from the Foster School of Business at the University of Washington. She lives in Sammamish with her husband and two kids.

Sean Green

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Sean Green, Solid Ground Board 

Sean Green is a Civil Engineer and data scientist interested in learning how citizens can work together with government to make inclusive cities that provide opportunities for all, including the poorest among us. Prior to working on urban development as a Program Officer for Special Initiatives at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, he worked as a post-doctoral researcher at the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluations at the University of Washington. Originally from Charleston, SC, he worked for many years in the IT industry as an e-Commerce developer and consultant before attending graduate school where his research focused on effective policies for addressing water and sanitation problems in developing countries. He currently works as a Research Data Analyst in the Office of Policy and Innovation for the City of Seattle.

Justin Hellier

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 Justin Hellier, Solid Ground Board

Justin Hellier is a Strategic Advisor at Seattle Parks and Recreation, focused on budget and performance management. In his first job out of college, he served as a Solid Ground MLK VISTA, providing technical assistance to community groups leading park improvement projects in the Rainier Valley, South Beacon Hill, the Central District and Yesler Terrace. In the years since, he has researched the cleanup of the Duwamish River as an intern in Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn’s office, evaluated the EPA’s community involvement planning as a National Network for Environmental Management Studies Fellow in Washington, DC, managed an AmeriCorps program at EarthCorps, and taught courses on sustainability at the University of Washington’s Program on the Environment. He holds Masters’ degrees from the UW’s Evans School of Public Affairs and School of Environmental and Forest Sciences, and is excited to put his skills and passion to work on the Solid Ground Board.

Ajay Kamath

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 Ajay Kamath, Solid Ground Board

Ajay Kamath is the Director of Program Management for Citigroup's Mortgage division where he is responsible for developing and executing programs for customers in financial distress. He is responsible for effective program adoption across Citi's owned and serviced mortgage portfolios. At Citi, Ajay has managed a variety of responsibilities including leading the Pricing and Profitability functions, and heading multiple Sales and Operations teams. Prior to Citi, Ajay was a business consultant with Price Waterhouse Coopers LLP where he led consulting assignments in the rollout of financial systems for large companies. He moved to the United States in 1998 after having worked in several IT consulting organizations in India. Ajay is a graduate of the University of Mumbai and is an Associate Chartered and Cost Accountant from the Indian Institutes of Chartered and Cost Accountants. He moved to Seattle with his wife Rohini in 2010, and they enjoy the beautiful northwest outdoors with their three children and two dogs!

Anne Kysar

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 Anne Kysar, Solid Ground Board

Anne Kysar is an attorney practicing exclusively in the area of Social Security Disability Insurance and Supplemental Security Income Benefits at Schroeter, Goldmark & Bender since 2003. Anne has represented disabled workers at all stages of the Social Security Administration appeal process. Anne frequently trains other lawyers how to practice disability law. Prior to joining Schroeter, Goldmark & Bender, Anne was a public defender and provided civil legal services to indigent youth. Anne received her law degree from New York University School of Law in 1997. Anne has received numerous awards for her community service work including the Harry S. Truman Public Service award and a New York University School of Law Community Service award. Anne was also a Root-Tilden-Snow Public Service Scholar at NYU Law School.

Lauren McGowan

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 Lauren McGowan, Solid Ground Board
Lauren McGowan is a dynamic Seattleite committed to ending hunger, homelessness and the cycle of poverty. She is the Director of Family Stability at United Way of King County in Seattle, WA. She began her career at United Way as an AmeriCorps VISTA in 2004 and was later hired to manage the Earned Income Tax Credit Campaign. Lauren leads an extraordinary team and works with hundreds of community partners, elected officials, funders, business leaders, and volunteers to develop strategies that end homelessness and meet the basic needs of the most vulnerable members of our community. Lauren joined our Board in 2006 and was Board President for three years. Lauren is also on the board of The Prosperity Agenda. She participated in the 2010 Nonprofit Executive Leadership Institute and was a 2009 Institute for a Democratic Future Fellow. Prior to joining United Way, Lauren worked in Boston on advocacy efforts with the Immigrant and Refugee Community and statewide political campaigns.

Andrew Miller

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Andrew Miller, Solid Ground Board
Andrew Miller is a Staff Software Engineer and manager at the Fremont office of Google. There, he and his team work on continually improving Google Maps and the infrastructure that supports it. He moved to Seattle from NYC in 2009 and discovered Solid Ground through colleagues at work. Believing it is important to invest in one's own community, Andrew became a donor and a volunteer. He is excited to deepen his connection to Solid Ground through serving on the board, and he brings with him a culture of fast, data-based decision making and a passion for the important work carried out by the organization.  He holds a PhD in Computer Science from Columbia University and a BA from Hamilton College. He lives in Northeast Seattle with his wife and two young kids.

Janel Ostrem

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 Janel Ostrem, Solid Ground Board

Janel Ostrem earned a Bachelor of Arts in Behavioral Sciences & Law and Women's Studies from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2001. She received her Juris Doctor from the University of Washington School of Law in 2006. Both before and during law school, Janel worked for several different nonprofit legal organizations in Seattle including the Unemployment Law Project, the King County Bar Association and the Innocence Project Northwest. While in law school, she also served as Co-President of the Public Interest Law Association. Janel currently represents individuals in family law matters as an attorney at Seattle Divorce Services in Ballard.

Greg Proulx

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Greg Proulx, Solid Ground Board 

Greg Proulx is a Partner with Bridge Partners Consulting, a regional business strategy and operations consulting firm, serving clients in the Puget Sound, San Francisco Bay Area and Chicago. In his current role, Greg provides Fortune 500 clients with business strategy and execution services and performs business development work for the firm as well. He has broad and deep expertise in enterprise sales and marketing with cross disciplinary experience in partner and channel development, business strategy and planning, and field operations. Prior to joining Bridge Partners, Greg spent 11 years at Microsoft Corporation in multiple sales and operations roles, including General Manager of the US Enterprise Partner business. He also spent 14 years at Oracle Corporation in a variety of sales, technical and product marketing roles, and three years at Hewlett-Packard Company in field readiness and enablement roles. He holds a BS degree in Computer Engineering from UCLA. 

Shannon Rae

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Shannon Rae, Solid Ground Board

Shannon Rae is the Community Advocacy Program Manager at New Beginnings in Seattle, leading a team of advocates providing direct service to domestic violence survivors as well as advocates working in prevention and community education. She came to the agency first as the Mental Health Therapist, developing the program from its inception, followed by 4 1/2 years as the Emergency Shelter Program Manager. Shannon has also served as an adjunct professor at Antioch University, teaching Ethics and Abusive Relationships courses to graduate students in the Mental Health and Counseling program. Prior to these positions, she was in private practice providing therapy to couples and individuals. Dedicated to social justice, ending oppression, and helping to create a world that works for all, she actively sought a position on the Solid Ground Board of Directors to put her passion into action on a broader scope. She holds a Master’s degree in Counseling Psychology from California State University, Northridge, and received her Marriage and Family Therapy license in 1996. She currently resides on the East Side with her wife Amy, her teenage son, and their menagerie of pets..

Chris Villiers

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Chris Villiers, Solid Ground Board

Chris Villiers is a Director of Communications with The Boeing Company. He leads a team that develops communications strategies promoting the customer service, pilot training, parts, modification and aftermarket support Boeing provides airlines and leasing companies around the world. During the past 24 years, he has served in a wide range of media relations, employee communications and executive communications positions at Boeing, Safeco Insurance and Rainier National Bank/Security Pacific Bank. A former newspaper reporter, Chris is a graduate of the University of Washington, where he studied journalism and creative writing. Chris lives in Bothell with his wife and daughter.

Wendy Werblin

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Wendy Werblin, Solid Ground Board

Wendy Werblin is a Senior Manager with North Highland, a global management consulting firm that delivers unique value, relevant big ideas and strategic business capabilities to clients around the world. In her current role, Wendy serves as a leader, catalyst and coach, leading teams at Fortune 500 companies, major nonprofits and municipalities to drive and implement major business initiatives and significant organizational change. She has broad and deep experience in marketing, product management and communications and spent nearly ten years with Philips Healthcare developing markets and products and driving demand for Philips’ market-leading HeartStart defibrillators. Prior to Philips, Wendy spent time with a Silicon Valley healthcare technology startup and as a healthcare consultant. She holds an MBA from the Fuqua School at Duke University and a BS from Cornell University.

Sherry Williams

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Sherry Williams, Solid Ground Board

Sherry Williams
was born and raised in the Central District of Seattle and has enjoyed working in the nonprofit field for more than 20 years. In 1996, Sherry joined the Technology Access Foundation (TAF) and currently serves as their Deputy Director. TAF is an organization focused on preparing students of color for success in college and life through the power of a Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) education. Sherry is passionate about injustice towards people and is interested in providing opportunities that present an equal playing field for all. In Sherry’s spare time, she truly enjoys spending time with friends, family (especially her grandson), church activities, traveling and reading. Sherry is thrilled to be participating on the Solid Ground Board.

Contact Us

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206.694.6704 (TTY: 7.1.1)



Board of Directors c/o Solid Ground
1501 North 45th Street
Seattle, WA 98103-6708













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