Nykke Straws

Director of People and Culture

Nykke Straws, is a dedicated, mission-driven, and certified human resources management professional with the proven ability to quickly build trust with key stakeholders, interpret business goals, and align to HR objectives that improve performance, support continuous improvement, and drive positive workforce collaboration. She is a dedicated nonprofit-human resources leader whose service-based leadership mindset supports youth, employees, leaders, and the organization as a whole throughout the employee lifecycle. Nykke previously served as the human resource manager for the Native American Youth and Family Center (NAYA).

A native to the Pacific Northwest, aside from fours year as a child living in Utah, Nykke is originally from the Tri-Cities in Eastern Washington and has called Vancouver, Washington home since the early 90's. Her career in non-profit work began 25 years ago as a work study student to finance her way through college, at the YWCA of Clark County SafeChoice Domestic Violence Shelter. She has training in healing-centered care, suicide prevention, youth mentorship, DEI and HR, and received her certification from Portland State University in 2019.

Nykke has always been an advocate, mentor, friend of all children. As a bi-racial child survivor of domestic violence, Nykke faced many difficulties growing up and wishes she had had a friend to confide in and help her and her family. As the eldest child she always has felt a sense to protect and provide guidance to her younger siblings. She is at her best helping others and working for an organization whose mission is to serve children. So, when Nykke thinks about why Friends of the Children – Portland, she states, "because that is who I am and have always been, a friend!"

When Nykke is not working she enjoys road trips, reading, nature, going to the movies, listening to music, and spending time with her fur baby, Bella. Together, they enjoy walks along the Vancouver waterfront and the Farmers Market, and of course the dog park. Nykke also enjoys spending time with family and friends and has nieces and nephews that bring her joy to be around.