Meet Our MURPs!

What's a MURP? Well, it's actually a person. A Masters of Urban and Regional Planning candidate at Portland State University. To give a little background, 1000 Friends works with MURPs as part of the Hub and Spoke Internship Program. 1000 Friends is the “hub” that coordinates the MURPs or “spokes.” The hub also collaborates with partner organizations, which are nonprofits representing low-income communities and communities of color. Partners leverage the hub, spokes, and the resources of PSU to build community capacity and develop self-determined policy priorities and agendas. 

Allow us to introduce Shane, Lorrie, and Christine:

"My name is Shane Valle. I am a recent transplant from Seattle in my first year at Portland State University in the Master of Urban and Regional Planning Program.

"My interest in Planning and Land Use comes from my work and studies in Transportation Engineering and Planning at the University of Washington. Specifically I am interested in the ways that land use and transportation impact one another and ways in which planning for one can consciously compliment the other.

"Through 1000 Friends of Oregon, I am supporting OPAL Environmental Justice Oregon in their ongoing campaign to improve the quality of public transit for all users, especially those who are transit dependent. Thus far, my contribution has consisted of analyzing and packaging TriMet ridership and demographic data to help inform and direct the advocacy efforts of OPAL’s Bus Riders Unite. In the future, I aim to be directly involved in the on-the-ground advocacy efforts to improve transportation options for all in the Portland metro area. 

"I am eager to learn from Oregon state’s rich history of thoughtful planning as well as the never-ending work to harmonize transportation and land use decisions, outlined in planning Goal 12. It’s my hope my work with OPAL Environmental Justice Oregon will help policy makers more deeply consider socioeconomic and geographic equity concerns that impact the mobility and access of many people who depend on public transit every day. This in turn can generate more meaningful conversations about transportation, land use, and equity in other related arenas."

 

Lorrie is a second-year MURP and self-professed transportation enthusiast. Here's a little bit about Lorrie and the work she's doing with 1000 Friends.

Her passions:

"My interests are social justice, equity, empowerment, public transit, especially Bus Rapid Transit, and public space where magic happens." 

Her work:

"I'm working at OPAL [Organizing People, Activating Leaders] Environmental Justice Oregon in their Research and Advisory Committee on the equity analysis of e-fares and racial profiling."

What she loves about Oregon's cool communities:

"As a transportation enthusiast, I love that Oregon identified a long time ago that land-use and transportation are explicitly tied together, which other states are only learning now. Furthermore, this recognizes our choices impact the earth around us. I hope to continue this idea that each decision we make, affect those we cannot always see or hear. I would like to provide those with the least, a presence and a voice in these decisions."

 

Christine is a second-year MURP. Her focus is community development and land use specializations. Here’s a little bit about Christine and the work she’s doing with 1000 Friends of Oregon.


Her passions:

“I did not take a traditional path to planning school. I focused much of my earlier work around social justice and health equity. This work forced me to reflect on root causes of community problems, such as poverty, social isolation, crime, and resource scarcity. Over time, I began to understand that the disparities I observed in the communities I came from and worked in were also intimately tied to place. Today, my interests lie in the intersections of land use and inequitable development patterns. I hope to utilize my planning education in the work of uplifting and empowering underrepresented and underserved communities in advocating for more equitable and sustainable places.”

Her work:

“In collaboration with the Oregon Community Alliance of Tenants, we are developing a policy memo that will highlight the needs of renters in the Portland metro region, analyze how the Portland Comprehensive Plan and its proposed land use policies may contribute to displacement, and provide policy recommendations for ensuring fair protections for renters in Portland. We hope to gather community-wide support for the document and submit it as written testimony to the City in its on-going update process for the Portland Comprehensive Plan.”

What she loves about Oregon's cool communities:

“I love Oregon’s Land Use ethic because it provides a holistic framework for evaluating land use decisions. I hope that my work with Oregon Community Alliance of Tenants will contribute to the continuing discourse around fair and equitable housing provision in the state.”