Our Staff

Lisa Hershey | Executive Director

 

Lisa Hershey has served as Executive Director of Housing California, based in Sacramento, since November 2016. She has an extensive background in leading multi-sector initiatives around statewide policy change. In her previous role as Associate Director, she supervised Housing California staff, managed operations and cultivated non-traditional partnerships with multi-sector coalitions, networks and agencies, bringing the housing sector into greater conversations around climate change, equity, health and resident organizing.

 

Lisa started at Housing California as the Sustainable Communities Coordinator and held the position from May 2014 – December 2015. Before joining Housing California, Lisa served as the Public Health Institute (PHI) program director for California Convergence, a network of resident leaders and partners creating healthy, safe, and equitable communities where every person can participate and thrive. During her 21 years in state and local public sector roles, Lisa managed department-wide equity and place-based initiatives. She also served as an advisor to the director and deputy director on Policy and Programs in the California Department Public Health (CDPH) to inform SB 375 and AB 32 initial implementation and development of the Strategic Growth Council. She represented CDPH as a liaison for the department’s executive team with other state departments, agencies, and diverse external partners.

 

Lisa received a B.A. in Psychology from San Diego State University and a Master’s in Public Health from Loma Linda University School of Public Health., She is also a yoga teacher and certified peace ambassador. Lisa loves to run, practice yoga, and hang out with her family.

 

Email: lhershey@housingca.org

Direct dial: 916.287.9885

Jack Avery | Policy Associate

Jack Avery joined Housing CA in February 2020 as a Policy Associate. He has a background in public policy advocacy, nonprofit programs, and direct services. Prior to his time at Housing CA, Jack held multiple roles at United Way Bay Area, a nonprofit dedicated to fighting poverty throughout eight counties of the Bay Area. He served as the Public Policy Analyst, leading local, state and federal advocacy efforts on multiple issue areas, including affordable housing, food insecurity, public benefits, and the minimum wage. Jack also had experience as a Program Specialist, developing and leading an educational and outreach campaign for CalSavers, a new, state-sponsored retirement savings program, for over 7.5 million Californians who lack access to retirement savings at work. Before working at United Way Bay Area, Jack co-founded and led the Spark Initiative, a youth-led program providing peer mentorship and case management for youth experiencing homelessness, foster care, and justice systems involvement. The Spark Initiative is a program of VOICES Youth Center, which has pioneered lived-experience-leadership for over 15 years. 

Jack Avery grew up in San Francisco, California and attended City College of San Francisco, before transferring to, and graduating from, University of California, Los Angeles, with a BA in Political Science. 

 

Email: javery@housingca.org

Direct dial: 916.287.9883

Donna Bisbiglia | Events Manager

 

Donna Bisbiglia joined Housing California in August 2017 as Events Manager.  In this role, she is responsible for the organization of the Housing California Annual Conference. She brings her extensive background in event management for corporate and non-profit organizations to the team.

Donna has created and managed public festivals, corporate conferences, and nonprofit organization conferences and fundraisers for more than a decade. She began her career as a media producer/director for commercial spot work and corporate marketing.

A Bay Area native, Donna attended San Francisco State University where she received a B.A. in Broadcast Communication Arts with a concentration in Video Production.

 

Email: dbisbiglia@housingca.org

Direct dial: 916.287.9890

Christopher Martin | Policy Director

 

Christopher Martin joined Housing California in August 2017 as a legislative advocate with a focus on California homelessness policy. Chris now leads Housing California’s policy team as the Policy Director. Prior to joining Housing California, Chris worked as Executive Director for Friends of the Shawnee National Forest in Southern Illinois advocating for public lands and sustainability.
 
Christopher has worked in the State Capitols of Illinois and Michigan, and the U.S. Capitol in Washington D.C. While in D.C., Chris worked for then-Rep. Tammy Duckworth to secure funding for homeless veteran care for various non-governmental organizations in Illinois and around the country.  After working for the Congressperson, Chris started with JDRF Advocacy as a Grassroots Coordinator to advocate for federal Type 1 diabetes research funding and support for programs assisting those affected by the disease, with which he lives. While in this position he supported and managed volunteers along the west coast including in California. Christopher now serves on the Board for the JDRF Northern California Inland Chapter as their Advocacy Team Chair (ATC).
 
Christopher has led many bills and budget requests since joining Housing California. He led on bills to create a supportive housing program for Medi-Cal beneficiaries (AB 74, Chiu 2017), prohibit discrimination against voucher holders (SB 329, Mitchell 2019) as well as the Homeless Youth Act of 2018 (SB 918, Wiener 2018). Chris also has led advocacy for investment out of the budget to address homelessness including historic investments like the ones in 2019 and 2020 of nearly $1B. He also sat on the Executive Steering Committee at the Board of State and Community Corrections (BSCC) for the Adult Reentry Program, which appropriated $50m in funds to community-based organizations (CBOs) to support formerly incarcerated Californians in transitioning back to community. 
 
Christopher received a B.A. in both Political Science and Criminal Justice from Michigan State University.

 

Email: cmartin@housingca.org

Direct dial: 916.287.9886

Iris Murillo | Communications Manager

Iris Murillo joined the Housing California team in February 2020. She has over 14 years of marketing, sales and public relations experience. In the last six years, she has served as Director of Marketing for Christian Church Homes (CCH), a faith-based non-profit housing developer and property management organization.  Iris has extensive experience developing and executing comprehensive communication plans targeting and engaging specific groups central to the mission of the organization. In her role she has also created and executed an art program and a digital learning program serving low-income seniors residing in affordable housing and enabled residents to visit the State Capitol where they met with legislators and promoted affordable housing bills. Over the last two years, she has also collaborated with communication directors from numerous housing organizations.

 

She previously served as a Library Commissioner for the City of Hayward where she worked to pass a ballot measure funding the development of a new city library which opened in late 2019. Iris holds a Bachelors Degree in Computer Information Systems from Cal Poly Pomona and a Masters Degree in Business Administration from Cal State East Bay.

Email: imurillo@housingca.org

Direct dial: 916.287.9831

Khrystyna Platte | Events Associate

 

Khrystyna Platte joined the Housing California team as Administrative Assistant in September 2019. Prior to that, Khrystyna has worked in the non-profit sector since 2013 coordinating local, statewide and national events. These events include conferences, workshops, and elected official dinners geared toward providing technical assistance, trainings, and information to local government officials and staff.

Prior to entering the non-profit sector, Khrystyna earned her Bachelors of Arts degree in Economics from Sacramento State University.

 

Email: kplatte@housingca.org

Direct dial: 916.287.9889

Jazmin Posas | Program Associate

 

Jazmin Posas joined Housing California in January 2018. Prior to Housing California, she worked as a Program Coordinator for Student Action with Farmworkers, as a Program Associate at CaliforniaVolunteers, and as an application counselor for the Marketplace Exchange.

As a Program Associate for CaliforniaVolunteers, Jazmin oversaw a portfolio of AmeriCorps grants and worked with programs across the state to provide technical assistance on AmeriCorps grant compliance and policies. At Student Action with Farmworkers (based in Durham, North Carolina), she coordinated an internship and a fellowship program, organizing and training students from across the country to engage in the farmworker justice movement of the southeast. She conducted community outreach to raise awareness of issues related to farmworkers and garner support for organizational programs. While in North Carolina, she worked in Raleigh and surrounding rural communities providing education on access and utilization of the Affordable Care Act to residents of low-income communities and H2A visa recipients.  

 

Upon returning to California, Jazmin got involved with campaigns such as Make it Fair (now the California Schools and Local Communities Funding Act), and organized residents to become civically engaged in local government.

 

Jazmin graduated from California State University of Sacramento with a B.A. in History and received a certificate in Nonprofit Management from Duke University’s Continuing Education program. She is currently a fellow in the Women’s Policy Institute, creating policy to advance gender and economic justice through the Economic Justice team.

 

Email: jposas@housingca.org

Direct dial: 916.287.9881

Jacqueline Ramirez | Policy Associate

Jacqueline Ramirez joined the Housing California team in February 2020 as a Policy Associate. As the first person in her family with the opportunity to pursue higher education, she is committed to creating collaboration around social issues. Before working in Housing California, Jacqueline researched social equity and policy around homelessness, housing, economic development, and health issues in the Southern California region.

 
A Los Angeles native, Jacqueline attended the University of California, Los Angeles, where she received a B.A. in Anthropology and minored in Global Studies. She also attended the University of Southern California, earning a Master of Public Administration, and Master of Social Work focused on Social Change and Innovation. Jaqueline is currently a fellow in the American Institute for Contemporary German Studies, fostering German and American relations as well as creating a better understanding of the challenges faced in the global landscape.  

 

Email: jramirez@housingca.org

Direct dial: 916.287.9830

Tori Truscheit | Organizing Director 

 

Tori Truscheit joined Housing California in July 2019 as the Statewide Organizer. She now serves as Housing California’s Organizing Director. Most recently, she was Solidarity Manager at Sacred Heart Community Service in San Jose, where she organized food bank volunteers to support housing and immigration justice. She was the lead organizer and a founding member of the San Jose chapter of Showing Up for Racial Justice, where she won a 2019 campaign to make sanctuary protections for Santa Clara County immigrants the strongest in the country.

 

In the South Bay, she organized homeowners and renters for tenants’ rights and low-income gardeners for increased access to organic food. Previously, in New York City, she organized teachers around state evaluations after time as a public middle school teacher and education policy researcher.

 

Tori received a B.A. in English from Yale University and a Master’s in teaching from Pace University. She is also a freelance journalist, reporting on LGBT issues for outlets like Buzzfeed.

Email: ttruscheit@housingca.org 

Direct dial: 916.304.3747

Luke Villalobos | Legislative Advocate - Land Use & Finance

 

Luke Villalobos joined Housing California in December of 2019 as a legislative advocate focusing on land use and finance for affordable housing.  Prior to joining Housing California, Luke worked in the Office of the Mayor in Riverside, CA, where he led the Mayor’s Love Your Neighbor Initiative, an initiative to end chronic homelessness in the city of Riverside.  This work included community organizing with the faith community and non-profits to build creative partnerships toward developing more affordable housing on underutilized faith land.  In addition to housing, Luke was instrumental in creating a social work internship with three local universities designed to address the capacity needs within community-based organizations in their response to homelessness.

Before working in politics, Luke was as an educator in the District of Columbia Pubic Schools (DCPS), where he taught English Literature to recent arrivals and long-time residents in the Columbia Heights neighborhood of Washington, D.C. While teaching in DCPS, Luke was inspired to work towards addressing the affordable housing crisis when he saw the impact of evictions and housing insecurity on his students’ success in the classroom.  

 

Luke earned his degree in English from California State University, Fullerton, and his Master’s in Teaching from the University of Southern California.

 

Email: lvillalobos@housingca.org

Direct dial: 916.287.9887

Jenny Welch | Operations Director

 

Jenny Welch has served as Operations Director for Housing California since July 2020. In this role she is responsible for ensuring that the day-to-day operations of Housing California run smoothly and are administered effectively, including overseeing the organization’s administrative & office functions, overseeing the organization’s membership growth, coordinating fund development efforts and providing overall organizational support, including board relations, in close partnership with the Executive Director. She previously served as Housing California’s Operations Manager from July 2017 – July 2020.


Before joining Housing California, Jenny served as a Project Manager at the Local Government Commission where she supported local policymakers and stakeholders in their efforts to build more livable communities in California. Through this experience she gained extensive experience in facilitating meetings, events and collaborative groups with diverse stakeholders; organizing and conducting events; and managing and implementing complex projects. She also worked at the U.S. EPA’s Office of Sustainable Communities and the State of California’s Strategic Growth Council.


Jenny obtained a B.A. in Political Science and Urban Studies and Planning from the University of California, San Diego.

 

Email: jwelch@housingca.org

Direct dial: 916.287.9882

David Zisser | Associate Director

David Zisser joined Housing California as Associate Director in August 2018.  Most recently, David worked for four years at Public Advocates as a Senior Staff Attorney on the Metropolitan Equity Team.  He co-convened the Bay Area’s only regional equity coalition (called the 6 Wins for Social Equity) and led Public Advocates’ housing justice advocacy in Oakland.  David partnered with dozens of grassroots and policy organizations in local, regional, and statewide coalitions to advance affordable housing funding and policies, supportive housing development, fair housing, tenant protections, community benefits, and equitable transit and climate investments.  

 

Previously, David worked for four years at the national Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law in Washington, DC, as Counsel in the Fair Housing and Community Development Project.  David spearheaded the Lawyers’ Committee’s Gulf Coast work, leading campaigns for affordable housing, fair housing, disability rights, tenants’ rights, and environmental justice, primarily in New Orleans, LA, and Gulfport, MS.  He also coordinated transactional legal assistance to dozens of affordable housing developers, community land trusts, and other community development organizations.

 

From 2007 to 2009, David was a Housing Fellow at New York City’s Department of Housing Preservation and Development, where he worked on the Housing Choice Voucher and Low Income Housing Tax Credit programs.

 

David received a law degree from UC Hastings and a Master's in City Planning, with a focus on housing and community development, from UC Berkeley in 2007.  He received his Bachelor’s degree in Sociology from UCLA in 2003. Outside of work, David spends most of his time exploring the outdoors with his wife and daughters and visiting family in the Bay Area and Oregon.

Email: dzisser@housingca.org

Direct dial: 916.287.9884

Vision

A California in which no one is homeless and everyone can afford a safe, stable place to call home in a healthy and vibrant community.

Reach Us

Housing California

1107 9th Street, Suite 560

Sacramento, CA 95814

p. 916.447.0503

f. 916.447.1900

staff@housingca.org

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© 2020  by Housing California