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2017 Robert Phillips Regional Diversity Award – Now Accepting Nominations

Robert Phillips’ name graces this award due to his tireless advocacy of inclusion, diversity, equity, and equal opportunity. Phillips expanded the focus of this conference to include multiple jurisdictions and agencies, growing it into one of the most important diversity events for public employees in the region.

In keeping with the spirit and commitment of Robert Phillips we are seeking nominations where extraordinary contributions have been made in relation to inclusion, diversity, equity, and equal opportunity. This award will honor an employee, work groups, teams or departments that have demonstrated exemplary respect and commitment to inclusion, diversity and equity that went beyond the requirements of day-to-day job performance.

Help us identify and nominate individuals and/or work groups who have raised the bar in supporting, promoting and implementing efforts to bring diversity, equity and inclusion to your government organization. Award recipients must be current, regular employees in good standing of one of the partnering municipalities/agencies.

The Selection Committee is comprised of at least three members of the Northwest Public Employees Diversity Conference Planning Committee and who represent various municipalities. The winner will be notified in advance and will be presented with the award at the conference.

Please fill out the online nomination form and submit your nominations no later than end of business Friday, September 8, 2017 to be eligible. We appreciate your assistance in identifying this year’s recipient of the Robert Phillips Regional Diversity Award.

Preview the questions.


Reason for the Award

This award is named in recognition of Robert Phillips, Multnomah County Affirmative Action Officer, who has worked in the area of equal employment opportunity for over 25 years and has a long history of involvement in the civil rights field. As Director of Multnomah County’s Affirmative Action Office, Robert was responsible for the development of policy initiatives, plans and programs that promoted respectful work environments for diverse employees and assisted the organization in meeting its equal employment opportunity and affirmative action obligations. Additionally, Robert served as a commissioner for the Port of Portland’s Civil Service Commission where he has served for 10 years. His community service includes appointments to the Nike Corporation’s Minority Affairs Advisory Board; Gubernatorial appointments to the State Commission on Black Affairs and the State Board to Register Clinical Social Workers; and service on the Oregon State Bar Affirmative Action Committee.

In 1996, the diversity program he managed for the City of Portland was recognized as a best practice model by People Management Resources, a division of Watson Wyatt Worldwide. Robert was also responsible for initiating the first national conference on performance measures for diversity programs, sponsored by the National Quality Institute. In addition, Robert was a recipient of the 2009 Arthur Flemming Award by the Multnomah County Managers of Color, the Oregon assembly for Black Affairs Political Development Award, the Northwest Conference of Black Elected Officials Leadership Award and the 2009 Northwest Public Employees Diversity Conference Robert Phillips Regional Diversity Award. He was the first public sector African American graduate of the Center of Creative Leadership’s African American Leadership Program.

The Multnomah County Board of Commissioners proclaimed February 28, 2012, as Robert Phillips Appreciation Day in Multnomah County, Oregon. In retirement from Multnomah County, Robert has an encore career during which he will serve as a member of the NW Renal Patients Advisory Board; the Oregon Assembly for Black Affairs Political Convention Planning Committee and the Port of Portland Fire Department Civil Service Board.

This award was created to honor his many contributions in the field of equity for all.


Past Recipients








2016 – Kory Murphy: 2016 Award Insert



Procurement Services





2015 – City of Portland, Procurement Services: 2015 Award Insert












2014 – Victoria Cross: 2014 Award Insert



Carole Smith







2013 – Carole Smith: 2013 Award Insert










2012 – Loretta Young: 2012 Award Insert











2011 – Donny Adair: 2011 Award Insert











2010 – Vera Pool: 2010 Award Insert











2009 – Robert Phillips: 2009 Award Insert