Verde Administration- Staff


Tony DeFalco

Executive Director

As Executive Director, Tony is leading the movement to rewrite the environmental agenda in Portland to build wealth with low-income communities of color. His expertise in community economic development, environmental protection and sustainability spans 20 years of working locally and nationally in environmental advocacy, coalition building and policy advocacy. Prior to stepping into the ED role, Tony worked at Verde as the Deputy Director as well as Living Cully Coordinator. His current focus includes redevelopment of a landfill into a park in a low-income neighborhood in Portland and strengthening communities of color and low income communities in deriving economic benefit from environmental investments.

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MAricela Ortega

Office Manager


Leah Altman

Oglala Lakota, Persian, and second-generation immigrant

Development Director

As the Development Director, Leah oversees Verde’s fundraising activities, with a focus on grant writing and grants management. Leah’s background is in grant writing, grants management, communications, and book and magazine writing, editing, and reviewing. She has a master’s degree in writing, with a focus on editing, and has worked for Portland-area nonprofit organizations focused on youth, community development, and the environment for the past nine years. Leah is an alumna of the Coalition of Communities of Color’s Bridges Leadership program and has lived in Portland most of her life. She is an avid reader of creative thrillers with female protagonists, plays pool competitively, and enjoys dancing in the kitchen with her daughter while making bacon; Leah has also been known to enjoy a good moonlight river swim.


Stacie Walen

Finance Director

Stacie Walen joined Verde in January 2015 after more than 10 years with Clackamas County Children’s Commission Head Start. Prior to nonprofit accounting, Stacie had 10 years’ experience in construction accounting. At Verde, Stacie manages the day-to-day financial operations, including general ledger and grant reconciliation, payroll, accounts payable and receivable.


Alan Hipólito

Director of Special Projects

Alan Hipólito has worked at Verde since 2005. He was born in New Orleans, Louisiana, USA. His father is from Tamazunchale, San Luis Potosi, Mexico, and his mother is from New Orleans.

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Jess Faunt

Communications and Development Assistant

As the Communications and Development Assistant, Jess tells Verde’s story through written and visual media with community members, peer organizations and funders. Jess is motivated to do this work because Verde actively contributes to a new environmental narrative that centers on the needs and visions of low-income communities of color. Jess came to Verde in 2017 as a Confluence AmeriCorps Member. She brings experience in media analysis with a racial and gender justice lens.