Take 5 with MHP’s Angela McLaughlin & Erica Cormack

Take Five is MHP’s series that asks the same five questions of a variety of people intersecting with MHP, from staff to housing advocates! We are excited to welcome Community Giving Manager Angela McLaughlin, and Community Development Manager Erica Cormack.

Angela McLaughlin

Q1. What attracted you to working with MHP?

I was excited about working with MHP because it gives me the chance to work “upstream” in the fight against homelessness and housing instability. After working for a direct service organization and seeing how it affects families firsthand, I was looking for an opportunity to help hopefully prevent the experience from happening and connect with community members who feel passionately about this, as well. 

Q2. What do you see as a challenge in the field of housing right now? 

Apathy and a lot of misunderstanding/prejudice. 

Q3. What does “home” mean to you?

Home is where my husband and my dogs are with me – where we are comfortable and feel safe together in our own space. 

Q4. Is there a book by your bed, and what is it?

I actually have a small stack of books by my bed right now because I like to read a lot, and I tend to rotate.

  • “Into the Wild” by Jon Krakauer (rereading after reading the book Chris McCandless’ sister released)
  • “Our Little Secret” by Kevin Flynn and Rebecca Lavoie
  • “My Friend Leonard” by James Frey
  • “Healing Trauma” by Peter A. Levine
  • “My Grandmother’s Hands” by Resmaa Menakem
  • “The Great Gatsby” by F. Scott Fitzgerald (another reread because I enjoy it)
  • “Everyone in My Family Has Killed Somone” by Benjamin Stevenson

Erica Cormack

Q1. What attracted you to working with MHP?

I was attracted to MHP because of the focus of the work on native nations and rural communities. Additionally, I was really excited about this organizations commitment to racial equity.

Q2. What’s do you see as a challenge in the field of housing right now?

One of the most concerning issues related to housing in our country is the failure to provide adequate support to people with high mental health needs. This is having a devastating impact on individuals who are experiencing homelessness. During a recent trip to San Francisco, I witnessed the most extreme version of this issue. In my own community, I have observed how the lack of proper support systems is preventing homeless individuals from maintaining housing, even when housing is available. 

Q3. What does “home” mean to you?

I know it sounds cheesy but home for me is about the people I share it with. In the words of Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros “home is wherever I am with you”

Q4. Is there a book by your bed, and what is it? 

I am a big fan of audiobooks, the most recent one that I have started is called Hold on to Your Kids by Gabor Mate

Q5. Who is your superhero?

In real life or Marvel movies/ DC comics ? Ms. Marvel is probably my favorite. In real life I’m a big fan of Dolly Parton, I think she is incredibly underrated, I love how much silent philanthropic work she does and how incredibly humble she is, she’s also ridiculously talented which is an added bonus. Zora Neal Hurston is also a forever hero of mine.

Look out for more Take 5 profiles coming soon!