Dallas Klein, Community Liaison

Dallas Klein joined the Free Minds team in 2020 after Dallas Head Shot
completing her MFA in Creative Writing with a focus in Poetry at Texas State University. She was born and raised in the greater Houston area and moved to central Texas in 2012. She has always been drawn to writing and educational support. Dallas’ love for these fields really bloomed while facilitating creative writing camps for adolescents through nonprofit creative writing centers. She believes education should always be accessible and fun. Throughout her years teaching and serving in academic support programs, she has seen many people intimidated by the classroom. She is honored to work for Free Minds because it is an organization that creates inclusive, inviting, and supportive spaces for all students. Dallas can be found curled up with a good book or a ball of yarn and some knitting needles, outside enjoying nature with her partner, Ethan, or out shopping for the next vintage find!


Amelia Pace-Borah, Academic Director

Amelia Pace-Borah began her work with Free Minds in 2012Amelia updated returning to her native Austin after earning her MA in Humanities from the University of Chicago and teaching writing to college freshmen. Amelia’s first encounter with a Free Minds-type classroom came when she volunteered for a similar program on Chicago’s north side. There she met a group of students who had braved the bitter cold and multiple train lines to spend their evening unpacking Wordsworth’s, “My Heart Leaps up When I Behold.” She was hooked. Amelia is proud to work on behalf of Free Minds, where she gets to experience the transformative power of the humanities every day. Her other true loves include her daughters, Mirabai and Naomi, partner Andy, a daily walk, and a good cup of coffee.


Irene Salas, Program Specialist

irene staff pic.png

Irene Salas is a 2014 Free Minds alumni and a 2018 Austin Community College graduate. Born right here in Austin, Texas but raised in the panhandle, she returned to the city when she was a senior in high school, working for many years with Travis County before returning to school. Beginning college courses late in life gave her much appreciation for the power of believing in oneself. Since then, higher education has become her number one goal, and there is no better company to share that goal with than Free Minds students. Irene believes Free Minds changes individual worlds, and she’s ecstatic to be part of a team that helps students believe in their own world-changing abilities. While she’s always working on homework, she also enjoys dinners made at home by her chef-like husband Benny, as well as reading, and trying to keep up with her teenage son, Thadeus.