Representative Akasha Lawrence Spence is the Founder & Principal Designer of Fifth Element—a conscientious real estate development firm fortifying small businesses through commercial property ownership. She believes that when communities have ownership and control of their resources, they are more resilient, self-sufficient and dynamic.
Representative Lawrence Spence is also the Founder of Melanated, a womxn of color organization focused on financial empowerment, entrepreneurship, civic engagement, and community stewardship. Representative Lawrence Spence's work serves as an incubator for economic growth and the creation of generational wealth in frontline communities. She serves on the Associate Board of Business for a Better Portland, where she uses her advocacy background to serve underrepresented communities and small business stakeholders who come together to work for progressive change in public policy.
The work Representative Lawrence Spence is actively engaged in, in the legislature is congruent to the goals and mission of the work she has committed to before her appointment. She continues to strive to create a new level of transparency, engagement, and accountability in the public sphere, centering the voices of the underrepresented and marginalized, a platform she championed during her tenure on The City of Portland's Planning and Sustainability Commission.
"There is no greater purpose in life than to live in service to others," and that is the ethos Representative Lawrence Spence has built her life's work on.