Des Spicer-Orak is a queer mixed Palauan poet, born and raised in Portland Oregon. A BSW graduate, author, activist, and organizer Des has come to understand herself and her culture through her relationship to the land and ocean. Their strong passion for learning and teaching involve them in many positions centered around building community resilience and healing. Des believes in the power of knowledge, and its ability to transform our impact on both each other and the Earth. In her work, Des intentionally amplifies the voices of her people and their struggles. Without recognition and action several smaller Pasifika communities will continue to suffer silently in the development of climate crises.
Outside of APANO, Des can be found organizing with Pacific Climate Warriors PDX, a local Pasifika youth climate chapter, attending and performing at local open mic events, or exploring hikes and trails with their dog Bella.