Directors

Joe Baessler, Interim Executive Director (he/him/his)
(971) 271-7835
[email protected]

Joe Baessler joined the Oregon AFSCME staff in 2006. A native of the Midwest, prior to joining AFSCME Baessler worked on the staffs of Gov. Ted Kulongoski, U.S. Rep. Earl Blumenauer, and Multnomah County Commissioner Lisa Naito, among others. He is also a co-founder of the Oregon Bus Project. Baessler graduated from Michigan State University in 1997 and has a law degree from Case Western Reserve in Cleveland. Baessler and his wife, Sarah, have three young children.

Corey Hope Nicholson, ASSociate Director (she/her/hers)
(971) 271-7825
[email protected]

Corey Hope Nicholson has been with Oregon AFSCME since 2015 after almost a decade working for 1199 SEIU MA running campaigns to organize over 5,000 new workers. Prior to that, she was the Program Director of the North Shore Labor Council, AFL-CIO. She also served as the board co-chair of the New England Jewish Labor Committee, on the board of the Women’s Institute for Leadership Development, and as a regular trainer and mentor to young organizers with the Jewish Organizing Initiative Network. A native of Denver, Nicholson lives in Portland with her husband, Zev Nicholson and their two young children Rebel & General.

David Kreisman, PUBLIC AFFAIRS MANAGER (he/him/his)
(971) 271-7818
[email protected]

Prior to joining Oregon AFSCME, David spent six years with AFSCME International where he oversaw strategic communications on internal/external organizing campaigns, legislative/policy fights, and political campaigns. Originally from the Midwest, David managed political and progressive advocacy campaigns in Wisconsin for a decade before joining the labor movement. David graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and lives in NE Portland with his dog Dexter.

Andy Chavira, member engagement DIRECTOR (HE/HIM/HIS)
[email protected]
DAVE CUTLER, FISCAL DIRECTOR (HE/HIM/HIS)
[email protected]

Dave Cutler has managed financial operations, along with IT, HR, facilities and fundraising, for labor unions and social justice nonprofits for over 30 years. Before coming to AFSCME in 2020, he spent 10 years at SEIU and also worked in antipoverty advocacy, progressive philanthropy, and environmental justice, including a term as Executive Director at the NYC Environmental Justice Alliance. He has served on the City of Portland Socially Responsible Investments Committee and on the boards of organizations including Basic Rights Oregon and Portland Jobs with Justice.

Kathy formella, Human Resources Director (she/her/hers)
[email protected]

Kathy Formella joined Oregon AFSCME staff in 2017 as a Council Representative and Organizer. Prior to coming on staff, she was an active member leader in Local 1790 and served on the Council Executive Committee. After getting her degree from Willamette University in Sociology, she went to work for Basic Rights Oregon doing political and community organizing focusing on statewide and rural outreach.  

Lamar Wise, Political Director (he/him/his)
[email protected]