Lia Nagase is the Director as well as an instructor.  After taking her first IMPACT class in California, Lia knew she had found a calling.  She immediately took every advanced class the organization offered, began fundraising and volunteering, and eventually worked in their office. Growing up in Oakland, California brought about passion and dedication to justice and equity. Lia moved to Portland in 2006 with the intention of bringing IMPACT to the greater Portland community and cofounded Prepare Portland. She cares deeply about safety, inclusion, community, and education, so running Prepare Portland and teaching classes has been incredibly rewarding. 

Lia graduated from the University of California at Santa Cruz with a degree in Language Studies and a minor in Education. She loves music (including singing), her family (including a Mexican Hairless dog and three children who teach and challenge her to be a better peacemaker regularly), and building community and friendships.  The Portland area is now her beloved community.