Juan Saldaña Since 2019
Advising Specialist, Chemeketa Community College
Juan Saldaña is the son of immigrant farmworkers from California. His early years were spent traveling between Migrant camps. After graduating high school in Porterville, CA, he came to Salem Oregon to join family. His involvement with the world of education and nonprofits began with his job as Fiscal Administrative Assistant at OCDC (Oregon Child Development Coalition). He began college at Chemeketa and graduated from Western Oregon University with his BS in Psychology and a Minor in Organizational Leadership. For the last four years, he has worked to mentor and connect youth with college resources at CCC through CAMP (College Assistance Migrant Program) and TRIO (federal student outreach and services), and with HECC’s Summer Bridge Program (Higher Education Coordinating Committee). His passion is helping students overcome barriers to their educational attainment. He currently mentors low-income, first generation college students, and students with disabilities. He is also a graduate of the first Cohort of People’s Rep, a project of Capaces Leadership Institute.
Chris Brantley since 2017
Board Secretary Treasurer
Retired Teacher and Administrator
Chris was a high school biology and computer programming teacher for thirteen years in Salem-Keizer before becoming a middle school administrator for seventeen years in Salem-Keizer and North Santiam School Districts. Since retirement he has served in many capacities, including Executive Secretary of OMLA; Technology Trainer for a COSA program (funded by Gates Foundation); adjunct instructor for PSU’s Administrative Licensure Program and Willamette University’s Masters of Arts in Teaching. He has been a Commissioner on the Oregon HECC and TSPC, and served two terms on the Salem-Keizer School Board; Currently, he is also a member of the Salem City Club Board and the Chemeketa Community College Budget Committee. Throughout his career, Chris been an advocate for students who do not adapt easily to “academia.” He believes in helping students learn through “real world” experiences to find success in our schools. He brings to SKCE the belief that strong, supportive families can be highly effective advocates in schools that adapt to students rather than expecting students to adapt to “the way it’s always been done.”
Carol Ann Crum since 2020
Relief Counselor at Looking Glass Community
Services, Station 7
Carol is a first-generation college graduate from the University of Oregon with her Bachelor of Science in Planning, Public Policy and Management with minors in nonprofit administration and global health. Over the last several years, she has been involved with fundraising for the UO College of Education, helping teens get their basic needs met at Looking Glass Community Services, promoting temporary and transitional housing programs with the City of Springfield, reviewing grants with United Way of Lane County, and running a sexual assault prevention shuttle on the UO campus. Currently, Carol is a legislative assistant in the Oregon Legislature. As an unhoused teen growing up in poverty, Carol credits the teachers and staff who believed in her for her successes in school. She believes education is a powerful tool to help people break the cycle of poverty and change the trajectory of their life, but it needs to be coupled with addressing systematic barriers. This is why she is a strong believer in the way SKCE works with families, schools, and the community to ensure the educational success of children.
Jonathan Castro Monroy since 2020
Managing Partner, Castro Monroy Group, LLC
Jonathan has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science from Oregon State University. He is currently the Managing Partner, providing financial planning and insurance, at the Castro Monroy Group. Before that, he was an agent at Mass Mutual. He is currently serving as a commissioner on the City of Salem Citizens Advisory Traffic Commission. Previously, Jonathan has been a member of the Oregon Community Foundation- Salem Latino Committee, and Chair of the City of Salem Human Rights and Advisory Commission. He has also previously served on other Boards, such as the Salem Chamber of Commerce Inspire Foundation and Salem Keizer Education Foundation. His service also includes the City of Salem Community Police Review Board, as Vice President of the City of Salem Parks and Recreation Advisory Board and as Treasurer of the National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors.
Alejandra Rodriguez Avelizapa since 2020
Owner, Red Apples Juicery
Alejandra recently joined the SKCE Board of Directors as the new Parent representative from our Parent Leadership Group. She is the parent of three children in the Salem Keizer School District and was the Secretary of the North Salem High School Latino Parent Club last year. She is also a member of the Latino Business Alliance and owned her own business, Red Apples Juicery, for six years. Alejandra did not have the opportunity to graduate from high school and her number one goal has been the educational success of her children. Her two younger children are 14 and 16 at North High, and her oldest, a North High Graduate, is a Sophomore at Chemeketa Community College. She is tri-lingual and already is in demand for her translating skills in English, Spanish and American Sign Language. Her goal is an ASL Degree from WOU. Alejandra has passed down her passion for learning and wants to bring that passion to SKCE as a board member.