Commissioner Christensen was born and raised in Taiwan until 1983, when she came to the U.S to pursue a college education. She earned a Bachelor’s Degree from Walla Walla University and a Master’s Degree in Social Work from Portland State University. Beginning as a worker in social services that lasted twenty years, she spent an additional ten years providing mental health services to individuals from various walks of life and challenges. Her career started with the Department of Social and Health Services in 2008 as a social worker, later becoming a vocational rehabilitation counselor at the Division of Vocational Rehabilitation. As an individual with a disability, she is very passionate about helping others with disabilities achieve meaningful employment to enhance the quality of their lives.
Commissioner Christensen worked as a contracted Asian Pacific Island Special Population Consultant for community mental health services in Vancouver, WA from 2011 to 2018. She helped clinicians incorporate cultural and ethnic aspects for developing treatment plans while using culturally sensitive approaches to form working relationships with the Asian and Pacific Islander community in the mental health setting. Her interests include geriatric mental health, or the mental health of those with disabilities, and the mental health of second-language speakers. She is devoted to working toward a diverse, inclusive and equitable workplace and community.
Currently, Commissioner Christensen resides in Vancouver, WA with her husband, Steven. She identifies as Amerasian. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her friends and family, travelling, gardening, movies, and reading. She still returns to her home country of Taiwan to celebrate Chinese New Year annually.