Lindsey Krinks, Co-Founder & Director of Advocacy
Lindsey Krinks serves as Co-founder and Director of Education at Open Table Nashville. For over a decade, she has worked on the underside of Nashville—the streets, encampments, jails, slums, and underpasses—while also working with faith leaders, community organizers, and public officials to make the city more hospitable and just. Lindsey was ordained in 2013 and serves as an interfaith street chaplain. She graduated from Vanderbilt Divinity School in 2013 with a Masters of Theological Studies degree and is on the board of the Nashville Coalition for the Homeless. Her book Praying With Our Feet: Pursuing Justice & Healing on the Streets came out in February of 2021 through Brazos Press and can be purchased anywhere books are sold. On any given day, Lindsey can be found in tent cities, washing feet on the streets, marching for change, or foraging for native herbs and plants. To learn more about Lindsey’s work and writing, visit her blog or her website.
Allie Wallace, Interim Executive Director
Allie joined Open Table Nashville’s staff in August of 2019 after volunteering with OTN since its founding in 2010. Previous to her work as OTN’s operations coordinator, Allie served as a pastor for five years at a local church in Goodlettsville and graduated with her Masters of Divinity from Lipscomb University in 2019. She has dedicated her academic career to the study of theology and is deeply interested in the intersections that exist between spirituality and justice. Allie is so excited to be a part of the staff at Open Table Nashville because she is passionate about journeying alongside the marginalized. If she isn’t hanging out with her twin sister or watching Netflix, you can find Allie reading on her back porch, inviting herself over to her friends’ houses, or eating a snack.
Lisa Avrit, Director Of Finance
Lisa Avrit began volunteering with Open Table Nashville in 2015. After serving on the board for a few years, the opportunity arose to join the staff as the Finance Coordinator and she jumped at the chance. In her spare time, Lisa enjoys spending time with her husband and two kids, hiking and playing outdoors.
Edward Kehoe, Outreach & Data Coordinator
Edward comes to Open Table Nashville from the community organizing family in Nashville, working with several local grassroots organizations and nonprofits. Edward moved to Nashville in early 2018 from Washington where he went to college at The Evergreen State, triple majoring in Communications, Acting, and Political Economics. His goal is to de-professionalize community organizing in order to bring politics back to the people. Because of this goal he can be found canvassing in your neighborhood sometime soon.
India Pungarcher, Advocacy & Outreach Specialist
India holds a bachelor of science degree in dietetics and global health from the University of Wisconsin – Madison. She is a Midwest transplant who came to Nashville to pursue her master of public health degree at Vanderbilt. She started as a volunteer and immediately fell in love with the Open Table Nashville way – building relationships and standing in solidarity with our friends. She wants to spend her career working with and advocating for people experiencing homelessness and affordable housing by merging efforts from local government, advocacy, and research sectors. She believes housing is a fundamental human right and supports housing first models.
When she is not doing nerdy things on her computer for school or work, you can find her at the dog park with her pug, trying a new coffee shop, going for a run, or planning her next escape into the wilderness for some hiking and camping. She is always in search of people, places, and experiences that allow her to experience grace deeply.
Olivia Nelshoppen, Communications Coordinator
Olivia originally moved to Nashville in her sophomore year of college and just recently graduated in May 2022 from Belmont University with degrees in Corporate Communication and Marketing. During her time at Belmont, Olivia found a deep passion for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion within her sorority leadership position. Olivia is beyond excited to continue her advocacy work while incorporating her love for communications and marketing at Open Table. During her free time, Olivia enjoys finding new coffee shops, reading, and having spontaneous adventures with friends.
Claire Hennigan, Street Outreach & Housing Navigator
Claire moved to Nashville from Greenville, South Carolina in 2017 to attend Belmont University for social work. As her freshman year eventually turned to her senior year, she grew to love the spirit of Nashville and found a home within it. She got her start interning at Planned Parenthood, which instilled a deep passion within her to advocate for the Nashville community. She’s excited to continue supporting Nashville at Open Table! When she’s not at work, she loves to play Stardew Valley and watch mindless TV.
Samantha Rae MacAlpine, Street Outreach & Housing Navigator
Samantha Rae is a graduate of the University of Southern Indiana with a Bachelor’s of Social Work and Ivy Tech Community College with an Associate’s in Human Services. She moved to Nashville from Indiana after graduating some five years ago, but the city had been a second home to her for at least that many more. SamRae has had something of an unconventional career. In addition to her 10+ years of experience in the social work field as an intern and professional, she has also occasionally ‘gone rogue’ as a member of organizing movements and community safety teams. She is a fierce advocate for the trans community, especially those far too many of her siblings who are out on the streets or under constant threat of losing their housing. She believes housing, healthcare, food, and water are fundamental human rights, and that there is no excuse in the modern world for anyone to kept from them. When not performing her duties with Open Table or marching around downtown yelling about stuff, SamRae enjoys a relatively quiet life with her two cats Catra and Glimmer. A devout Buddhist, she can often be found in local Sanghas and Dharma groups. She likes to spend her free time playing tabletop games, painting miniatures, hiking, making music, cooking, and befriending everyone’s pets.
Will Compton, Resource Specialist
Will discovered Open Table Nashville (OTN) shortly after moving from Kentucky in the Summer of 2019, and was immediately drawn to their fundamental value of solidarity with unhoused folks. Through his studies at Vanderbilt Divinity School (VDS), he became curious about non-institutional contexts for chaplaincy, such as social movements and the streets. As a complement to these newfound interests, he interned with the Village at Glencliff and OTN, doing community gardening with the former and outreach/advocacy with the latter. As of late, he has graduated from VDS with a Master of Divinity, was hired by OTN in May of 2022, and is in the process of becoming ordained. When he’s not working he enjoys hiking and kayaking, reading theology, writing poetry, and collaging.
Kelly Chieng, In-Kind Donations Coordinator
Kelly (she/her) was born in Toronto and raised in Middle Tennessee where she has been involved in community organizing efforts around displacement, eviction, and affordable housing in Nashville. She has volunteered and worked with multiple nonprofits throughout Nashville, including winter canvassing with Open Table Nashville! Kelly has a bachelor’s degree in International Relations and minors in economics and political + civic engagement. Kelly also has experience in real estate, interior design, and a general construction diploma. The thread that connects Kelly’s work, education, and advocacy is her passionate belief that everyone deserves a safe and dignified home. She looks forward to using her experience to add to the life-giving work of Open Table Nashville and to contribute to a Nashville for all.
Board of Directors
Robb Vecchio, Board Chair
Jacob Margason, Secretary