Amanda Caffall, J.D.
Executive Director & Staff Attorney
Raised in the foothills of Mt. St. Helens, Amanda grew to love nature and commuting by bicycle in the city. She graduated magna cum laude from Western Washington University and with honors from Lewis and Clark Law School, as a member of the Cornelius Honor Society and recipient of the Environmental Leadership Award. For more than twenty-five years, teams have relied on her to build energy out of ideas. In 2018, 2019, and 2020, she received awards for her work with The Commons Law Center, including the Oregon State Bar's Oregon New Lawyer's Division's Public Service Award, the Oregon State Bar President's Technology and Innovation Award, and Lewis & Clark Law School's Community Spirit Distinguished Honor.
She enjoys walking and hiking outside, tending houseplants, escaping wifi for extended periods, and raising a toddler.
Art Knauss, J.D.
Family Law Program Director
During law school, Art was drafted and served in Vietnam and had two children. His law practice has focused on family and criminal law, and he was a longtime defense attorney for Clackamas County Mental Health Court, which he helped create. His community service includes 14 years on the Clackamas County Bar Judicial Selection Committee, 6 years on the Oregon State Bar local ethics committee, President of Clackamas County Indigent Defense Corporation for 18 years, and President of the Board of Clackamas County Community Corrections for 10 years. For his contributions he received the Ralph Holman Lifetime Achievement Award from the Clackamas County Bar in 2016. Art has a political science degree from the University of Oregon and a law degree from Northwestern School of Law at Lewis & Clark College.
He and his wife, Lynne, live in Milwaukie and enjoy seeing their grandchildren every week.
Estates & Operations Director
Ekua graduated from Willamette University College of Law in 2015. During her time in
law school, Ekua was an active member of the Multicultural Law Student Association and the Women’s Law Caucus. She knew early on that she wanted to serve the community, and so spent a year working in the Willamette Clinical Law Program with a focus on estate planning. After graduating, Ekua worked a year and a half as a judicial clerk for the Hon. Cheryl Albrecht. Ekua joined The Commons because she has a
passion for helping build intergenerational wealth within the Black community. Ekua also currently serves as Secretary of the National Bar Association's Oregon Chapter.
In her free time, Ekua enjoys science fiction & fantasy, baking, and live music.
Elise has been interested in accessibility issues ever since she was young. By joining The Commons, she hopes to increase access to justice for Oregonians. She has attended Southern Oregon University, Lewis and Clark Law School, and St. Anne’s College, Oxford. During school, she worked at the ACLU of Oregon and the National Crime Victim Law Institute, and competed for Lewis and Clark at the regional Client Counseling Moot Court competition.
When she’s not in the office, she enjoys cooking, reading comics, and listening to podcasts.
Client Relations Manager
Esmeralda was raised in a small town just 45 minutes south of Portland. At a young age, she developed a passion for social justice and was heavily involved in immigration activism and promoting higher education. In college, she continued motivating her peers about available resources to succeed. At Oregon State University, she studied Political Science, with a concentration in law and politics. Her professional background is in customer service, including at Nordstrom, where she had a reputation for exceeding service standard goals and was promoted to lead service experience representative. In this position, she hopes to continue her advocacy for immigrants and all other underrepresented communities.
Esmeralda loves to watch a good comedy film, read a book, or go to a local park for a nice breath of fresh air in her free time.
Jennifer grew up in Southern California and Houston, but the mountains of the Pacific Northwest were calling. After graduating from St. Edward’s University in Austin, she joined the workforce for ten years (ask her about her stint with a wig designer to really get the conversation going). In Seattle, Jennifer volunteered with an anti-human trafficking organization where she developed a passion for the work and decided to improve her ability to advocate for others by attending law school at the University of Oregon. While in law school, she worked at organizations that assisted underserved populations, co-directed the Asian Pacific American Law Student Association, and served as a Frohnmayer Leadership Program Fellow.
Outside of the office, she enjoys creating recipes (and nurturing her sourdough starter), live music, morning yoga, and camping excursions.
Kristi Skalman is an advocate and voice for those who need it most and is keenly aware of the issues affecting low income and minority populations because of her upbringing and unique life experiences. She is on a mission to pave a pathway for others to seek justice and better themselves in a system stacked against them. Kristi has work experience in the restaurant industry, as a welder and metal fabricator, as a maiden at Renaissance Festivals, as a Promotional Model, and at a variety of office jobs. She manages to both be an effective advocate for her clients and cordial with opposing counsel and parties. In her free time, Kristi enjoys recording and producing music, caring for her three chihuahuas, spending time with her husband, gardening, creating art out of anything, and writing poetry and music.Kristi graduated in the top 25% of her class from Willamette University College of Law. She graduated cum laude from Portland State University with a Bachelor in History, and also has an Associates in Applied Science in Welding Technology.
Board of Directors
John E. Grant, J.D.
John is a lawyer, an ops guy, a consultant, a team-builder, and a hacker, though not necessarily in that order. By day he is a legal operations strategist and law firm process consultant. He served as co-chair of the Oregon State Bar's Innovations Committee and is a member of the Board of Governors.
Kimberly Pray, J.D., LL.M.
As board president, Kimberly has nearly two decades' experience in nonprofit leadership and organizational development. As one of the founding partners of Catalyst Law, LLC, a women-owned B-Corporation and initial investor in the Commons, she counsels change-makers how to leverage impact for their families, businesses, and communities in the areas of taxation, estate planning, and business law.
Jim has been practicing law since 1989 and loves to make the law a non-intimidating process for his clients. His firm is deeply committeed to everyone having access to legal help regardless of their financial means. He believes our society, and its laws, are only as good as a person's access to legal help. Jim also has a love of food and he and his wife, Jan, can often be found having dinner with their two daughters and their friends. He has a website, Tipping-the-Scales.com, where he helps attorneys find greater meaning by taking care of their teams, clients, and families.
Lewis Landerholm, J.D.
A decade in business management led Lewis to found his firm as a new lawyer in 2009. Recognizing too many people needed family law help, Lewis and his team launched a new project in 2014 to serve clients of lesser means, Affordable Family Law of Oregon. Lewis is a mentor to the kids sports teams he coaches and to his legal team.
Our advisory board is chaired by Kristen West McCall, partner at Pickett Dummigan McCall.
- Susan Gary, University of Oregon
- Ward Greene, Williams Kastner
- Kate Kilberg, Catalyst Law, LLC
- Neil Kimmelfield, Lane Powell, Shareholder
- Damien Munsinger, Klein Munsinger LLC
- Penny H. Serrurier, Stoel Rives, Managing Partner
- Michele E. Wasson, Stoel Rives, Associate
- Harry Wilson, Markowitz Herbold, Shareholder
- Josh Barrett, Create Legal
- Sean Blixseth, US Panasonic
- Susan B. Bock, Stoel Rives
- Tabitha Brincat, Brincat & New, PC
- Todd Cleek, Cleek Law Offices, LLC
- Brooks Cooper, Draneas Huglin Cooper, LLC
- Bryson Davis, Sussman Shank
- Jack Dekovich, McKinley Irvin
- Mary Dougherty, Brownstein Rask LLC
- James Dole, Watkinson Laird Rubenstein
- Jim Geringer, Klarquist
- Leigh Gill, Immix Law Group
- Alex Gund, Swider Haver
- Michael Hallas, Stumptown Law
- Victoria Hines, Goldberg Jones
- Ryan Howard, Ryan Howard Law
- Will Jones, Landerholm Law
- Lindsay Kearl, Legacy Preservation Law
- Kate Kilberg, Catalyst Law
- Rebecca Kueny, Kueny Law LLC
- Lewis Landerholm, Landerholm Law
- Henry LeSueur, The LeSueur Law Firm
- Jack Lundeen, Retired
- Bill Manne, Miller Nash Graham & Dunn
- Steven Mastanduno, Mastanduno Law Group
- Melissa May, Duffy Kekel LLP
- Anastasia Yu Meisner, Samuels Yoelin Kantor
- Fallon Niedrist, City of Portland
- Julie Nimnicht, Law Offices of Geoff Barnhart
- Jennifer Peckham, Elizabeth Christy Law Firm
- Kimberly Pray, Catalyst Law
- Joanna Posey, Posey Legal
- Valerie Sasaki, Samuels Yoelin Kantor
- Susan Lee Schwartz, Sharon Lee Schwartz LLC
- Ashley Sundar, Catalyst Law, LLC
- Vanessa Usui, Duffy Kekel LLP
- Terry Wright, Willamette University
- Arnold Wuhrman, The Wuhrman Law Group