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Volunteer Opportunities Now Open!

Volunteer opportunities now open. Closes Friday, September 5, 2014 at 5:00pm PST or until full.

If you are interested in volunteering at this year’s conference, please complete the Volunteer Registration Form.

Please note that you will not be registered as a volunteer until you submit the form. Volunteer positions are limited and filled on a first-come, first-served basis.  If all positions are filled, there is a waiting list available. If you have any questions regarding volunteering at the conference, please contact Nina Jones at Trimet at or (503) 962-2337.

Conference Schedule

6:30 am – 1:00 pm  Pre-Conference (Registration)
8:00 am – 8:30 am  Welcome and Opening Announcements 
8:45 am – 10:15 am  Workshop Period 1
8:45 am – 11:45 am  Executive Session (By Invitation Only)
10:30 am – 12:00 pm  Workshop Period 2
12:00 pm – 1:45 pm  Lunch Service with Award and Keynote Speaker 
2:00 pm – 4:00 pm  Workshop Period 3

Volunteer Assignments

General Assistance: Provide a wide range of volunteer assistance before, during, and after the conference, including filling in for missing volunteers. Can volunteer for AM, PM, or both.

Meet and Greet: Greet conference goers as they enter the Oregon Convention Center, assist with directing individuals to registration tables, meeting rooms, restrooms, etc. M&G volunteers must be available for entire “Pre Conference preparation” period from 6:30am 8:45am.

Registration: Arrive early (6:30am) to set up the registration tables and organize conference packets and bags. As conference goers arrive, the Registration volunteers sign people in and hand them their folders. Registration volunteers must be available for entire “Pre Conference preparation” period.

Workshop Room Monitor: Arrive 15 minutes prior to the workshop to help with set-up, let participants into the room, and prevent the room from filling above capacity. Additionally, Room Monitors may be asked to introduce the presenters using the provided biographical information. New to the conference this year is the participants’ ability to register for their workshops and Room Monitors will be checking names at the door.  Can volunteer for AM, PM, or both.

Room Technician: Ensures that rooms are equipped according to the preferences of the presenters (with pens, paper, flip charts, etc.). These volunteers will be responsible for transitions between sessions according to the supply list provided to them. Can volunteer for AM, PM, or both.

Lunch Volunteer: Will be ushering conference-goers into the Portland Ballroom, with the goal of filling up the front tables before the back.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: When will I be notified that I am a volunteer?

A: You will receive an email confirmation when you have completed the online volunteer registration form. You will be notified by our Volunteer Coordinator once you are assigned as a volunteer.

Q: Do I have to register for the general conference if I am a volunteer?

A: No. Once you are a confirmed volunteer, you do not have to register for the general conference (opening Monday, September 15, 2014). If you are on the wait list, at this time it would be best to register for the general conference if you wish to attend.

Q: During my volunteer off hours at the conference, may I attend workshops?

A: Volunteers have a complimentary pass to the conference luncheon and keynote address, as well as access to the full day of activities at the conference when you are off duty. Although volunteers do not register for workshops, they are allowed if room permits.


2014 Robert Phillips – Regional Diversity Award: Now Accepting Nominations!

This award is named after Robert Phillips; an individual who promoted and expanded the focus of this conference to include multiple jurisdictions. The award honors employees, work groups, teams or departments that demonstrate a respect for, and commitment to, diversity that goes beyond their day-to-day job performance. In keeping with the spirit and commitment of Robert Phillips we are seeking nominations where extraordinary contributions have been made regarding inclusion, diversity, equity, and equal opportunity.

We are asking you to assist us in identifying and nominating individuals and/or work groups who have supported, promoted and implemented efforts to bring diversity, equity and/or inclusion to your government organization. Award recipients must be current, regular employees in good standing of one of the partnering municipalities/agencies. (See list below).

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 nomination form at: and submit your nominations no later than end of business August 29, 2014 to be eligible. We appreciate your assistance in identifying this year’s recipient of the Robert Phillips – Regional Diversity Award.

Download this year’s Robert Phillips Award Letter.

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.

Partnering Agencies:  Multnomah County, City of Portland, Clackamas County, City of Hillsboro, Portland Development Commission, Washington County, Metro, Clark County, Portland Public Schools, Home Forward, Department of Environmental Quality, Port of Portland, the Oregon Lottery®, City of Beaverton, Oregon Health Authority, TriMet, Tualatin Valley Fire & Rescue and Bonneville Power Administration.


Past Recipients


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



Save the Date! Tuesday, October 14, 2014


Registration Will Open Fall of 2014


Keeping the Commitment By Forming Strong, Mutually Beneficial Partnerships. Discover New Partners during “Collabro-dating”!

Workshop Description Keeping the Commitment By Forming Strong, Mutually Beneficial Partnerships. Discover New Partners during “Collabro-dating”! - Multnomah County Citizen Involvement Committee (CIC) The Multnomah County Citizen Involvement Committee (CIC) will host a panel presentation and interactive discussion focused on strategies for creating mutually beneficial partnerships with other organizations when conducting outreach. Similar to personal relationships, organizations that create mutually beneficial partnerships are more likely to develop sustainable, long-term relationships that maximize the outreach assets and resources each partner can deliver to the other(s). The panelists will be leaders from Central City Concern and the Portland Community Gardens Program—community organizations that have experience forming mutually beneficial partnerships. Within the context of partnerships, they will present information focused on the benefits of mutually beneficial outreach partnerships and how to go about forming them. The information will include their experiences, best practices, lessons learned and related tools. Panelists will then answer questions from the attendees. Attendees will also participate in “Collabro-dating”—a fun and engaging exercise designed to identify and get new partnerships off to a running start. About the Presenter(s) The Citizen Involvement Committee (CIC) of Multnomah County, Oregon was created by a vote of the people in 1984. The passage of the Charter Review Committee’s recommendation amended the county charter to establish the Office of Citizen Involvement as an independent agency charged with providing staff support for the CIC.  Its mission is to involve, inform, and integrate the people of Multnomah County into policy and decision-making within county government. The CIC does not involve itself in the merits of issues, but rather with the merit of the processes that shape the issues.  We inform citizens, connect them with decisionmakers, and help them contribute to final outcomes.  The CIC works to improve connections between citizens and government, and to increase citizen participation. The CIC and its Office were recognized with a 2011 Achievement Award for the CIC Diversity Outreach Training Program by the National Association of Counties (NACo) for implementing an innovative county government program to better serve area residents. The CIC is composed of fifteen citizen volunteers.  Twelve are nominated by neighborhood associations and community groups; three represent other non-profit civic boards and commissions at-large. Handout(s) What is Diversity


Uncle Tom, Banana, Oreo, Coconut, Apple…People of Color, We Need to Talk

Workshop Description

Uncle Tom, Banana, Oreo, Coconut, Apple…People of Color, We Need to Talk - Macarre Traynham and Marshall Haskins, Portland Public Schools

Uncle Tom, banana, Oreo, coconut and apple are derogatory terms used to describe people of color perceived as “acting white.” Whiteness is not just exclusive to white people. Whiteness plays a role with all ethnicities because of how minorities negotiate and navigate dominant culture in order to achieve success and acceptance. The way in which minorities consciously or unconsciously internalize dominant cultural norms can influence how people of a similar race can see them as a sellout. Participants of color will learn how to identify how the presence and role of whiteness shows up in people of color and how denial can impact their work for racial equity. Participants of color will be able to identify how whiteness shows up in their actions, thoughts and beliefs; participants will learn how through identifying their own whiteness they are better able to interrupt systemic racism; and participants will learn how to effectively plan and explore whiteness through the use of the Courageous Conversations about Race protocol and Critical Race Theory. All conference participants are welcome to attend.

About the Presenter(s)

Macarre Traynham is the Principal at Metropolitan Learning Center (MLC) in Portland, Oregon. She has been an administrator with Portland Public Schools since 2004 working as the Vice Principal at Benson High School, Jefferson High School and most recently Lincoln High School.  She graduated from Norfolk State University with a Bachelor of Science in Mathematics and taught high school mathematics in Southern California prior to relocating to Portland, Oregon.  She has a Master’s degree in Educational Administration from California State University, San Bernardino, a Continuing Educators License from Portland State University and she has just begun working on her Doctorate in Education at Lewis and Clark College focusing on how dominant culture’s values and beliefs shows up in people of color.

Macarre’s work in education has afforded her the opportunity to work with young minds to help them become caring, responsible and productive members of society.  Her joy comes from watching students take pride in their learning and finding their intrinsic motivation to keep trying even when the work gets difficult.  Her focus at MLC is to continue to increase the achievement of all students while using racial equity to address diversity, opportunity gaps for students of color and culturally relevant teaching practices.

Marshall Haskins is the District Athletic Director for Portland Public Schools. He has served PPS as a teacher, athletic coach, school athletic director, and Vice Principal since 2002. He also served as Self Enhancement Inc.’s Vice President for Operations for over 10 years prior to coming to PPS. Marshall graduated from the Warner Pacific with a Bachelor of Science in Accounting, earned his Master of Public Administration from Portland State University and received both his Initial and Continuing Administrative license from University of Portland.


How to Create a Culture of Solidarity within Targeted Populations

Workshop Description

How to Create a Culture of Solidarity within Targeted Populations - John Wolfe, Kenya Budd and Michael Hulshof-Schmidt, EqualityWorks, NW

Using Anti-Oppressive Practice theory a safe environment will be provided for people to look at their own identities and how those identities can create an awareness of people who are targeted or marginalized.  Ways to become allies and to stand in solidarity will be explored. Racism, Micro-aggressions, homophobia, ageism, misogyny, and power and privilege, including a timeline of key issues in the history of equity and oppression will be addressed. By the end of this session, participants will understand promising and emerging practices related to collaborating for equity, specifically in the areas of solidarity, outreach, and being credible allies. This includes identifying and interrupting microaggressions and other oppressions, understanding identity, and working together as a community.

About the Presenter(s)

EqualityWorks, NW supports organizations of all sizes in achieving their missions in an equitable, inclusive, and effective manner through transformational conversations and a social justice lens.

Michael Hulshof-Schmidt has been a progressive educator for over two decades. He has lived in ten states in almost every region of the country, giving him a deeper understanding of varying cultural norms and differing views of diversity. Michael has worked in a wide variety of environments including private and public K-12 education, colleges, non-profit organizations, and educational consortia. In all of these environments, Michael has been a champion of social justice and has had some formal responsibility for the evolution and caretaking of institutional cultures. Michael teaches Social Justice at the Portland State University School of Social Work.

Michael’s formal education includes a Masters in Social Work from Portland State University, a degree in English from Oglethorpe University and graduate work in Feminist Studies at DePaul. He has formal training in research practices, diversity work, mediation, and education. He has learned and implemented best practices for team building and diversity training, providing consulting to businesses both large and small.

Michael applies a combination of Anti-Oppressive Practice, Eco-Feminist, and Psychodynamic theories as well as Critical Race Theory (CRT) to inform his operational framework. His company – EqualityWorks, NW – integrates the voices of Dr. Howard Zinn, Dr. Beverly Tatum, Dr. Peggy McIntosh, Dr. Marian Wright Edelman, and his mentor, Dr. Ann Curry-Stevens.  Michael’s mission is to create and sustain conversations around race, gender, privilege, and LGBT issues: to speak one’s truth respectfully and with honor.

Kenya Budd is a professional Trainer, Facilitator and Mediator in private practice, she has been mediating since 2004 and training individuals on diversity in the workplace since 2003. The framework for Kenya’s diversity work is grounded in workplace cultural competency, conflict resolution and equity for people with disabilities. As an architect of change, she has been instrumental in policy changes that provide for the inclusion of service animals in training in clinical settings, the addition of ADA modifications to Woodland, WA’s Historic Society’s building requirements, and was lead consultant on issues of inclusion for people with disabilities and people of Color; special commission to leaders in the LDS Church. Kenya has focused her diversity work on creating safe and respectful conversation communities where race, ability, gender, and privilege can be explored in a paradigm that promotes key concepts found in Cognitive Behavioral Theory, Motivational Interviewing Techniques and Transformative Facilitation models.

Kenya received a Bachelors of Arts in Communication and Deaf Education from the University of Maryland, And a Masters Degree in Public Health from Colorado College. She was trained and certified as a mediator at the University of Washington, legal education program and Vancouver Community Mediation Dispute Resolution Center. Kenya has received a wide variety of Diversity training including Building Partnerships Across Differences (BPAD), ADA and Civil rights training-BOLI.

John Wolfe is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker who has a private practice in Portland Oregon.  In addition to his clinical work with individuals, couples and sexual minorities John teaches Social Justice as well as Anti-Oppression Practice and Intercultural Competency at Portland State University School of Social Work.

John brings over thirty years of social work experience including positions of Program Manager, Social Worker, Child Protective Services Worker, Statewide Manager, and Family Therapist.  Additionally, he has experience lobbying for at-risk-girls issues at the Oregon Legislature.

John currently provides training in AOP as well as Case Management and Social Justice.  He has worked with IRCO, Impact Northwest, Catholic Family Services, Portland Police Department, State of Oregon Department of Human Services, Sisters of the Road Cafe, and Multnomah County as well as other organizations and programs.

John is a published author and poet.  His belief in moving humanity to greater inclusion, acceptance and tolerance of difference is critical to doing ‘the work’ as a change agent.






Korean vs USA – Two Opposite Cultures

Workshop Description

Korean vs USA – Two Opposite Cultures - Bobby Lee, Governor’s Office

This workshop looks at how to recognize ways to improve cross cultural communications as the community is getting more and more diverse. It will explain the physical location, North Korea vs. South Korea, climate, diet, populations mix, cultural, demographic and historic difference between Koreans and Americans. It will help public agencies better understand and appreciate an emerging population, thus keeping the promise of celebrating diversity in our region.

About the Presenter(s)

In late 2011, Governor John Kitzhaber appointed Bobby Lee to his administration to manage the Regional Solutions Center in the Portland Metropolitan region, a State agency team that works with local and federal governments in solving complex regional community development problems. Prior to the appointment he served as Strategic Planning Manager for Hynix Semiconductor, world’s second largest semiconductor manufacturer, for six years. He was responsible for corporate affairs including environmental services, strategic planning, government affairs, power negotiation, and semiconductor market analysis, while also serving as the company’s spokesperson. In 2007, he participated in international trade mission to Asia with Governor Ted Kulongoski. For five years he served as Director of Organizational Affairs for Worksystems Inc., workforce development non-profit agency for city of Portland, and Multnomah and Washington counties. His background also includes serving on the Eugene City Council, Oregon State Board of Higher Education, US President Bill Clinton campaign staff, McKenzie Watershed Council, Asian Council, Oregon Workforce Partnership Board of Directors, and Eugene Area Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors. He was elected as ASUO President for University of Oregon student body where he received his undergraduate and graduate degree in public administration.



It’s About You – Gaining, Understanding and Using the Personal Perspective in Diversity and Inclusion Work

Workshop Description

It’s About You – Gaining, Understanding and Using the Personal Perspective in Diversity and Inclusion Work  - Kathleen Saadat and Joseph M. Quinones

Knowing yourself is a key element to effective work in the field of diversity and inclusion. Our understanding of the world is grounded in our individual, family and community experiences. Our “identity” is grounded in these experiences. The combination of our experience, education, training, along with the emotional impact of each, is the foundation of our Personal Perspective. Our Personal Perspective is the filter through which we engage with the world, including our work.

We, individually and collectively, are the links between the past, present and future. How we approach diversity work and the level of our commitment is based on our Personal Perspective.  Our perspective can change over time given new information, experiences and changes in political climate.  Knowing ourselves helps us understand and meet the challenges of Diversity work which can be emotionally demanding, as well as gratifying. Self-knowledge and self-understanding can aid us in maintaining our equilibrium and purpose.

This workshop will provide participants with the opportunity to explore and gain an understanding of the effect of Personal Perspective on diversity and inclusion work. It will also provide information and techniques that will assist participants in sustaining their work.

About the Presenter(s)

Coming soon.


Bridges and Barriers

Diversity Bingo


Catching Yourself in a “What I Thought I Saw” Moment – Moving Beyond (Mis)Perceptions

Workshop Description

Catching Yourself in a “What I Thought I Saw” Moment – Moving Beyond (Mis)Perceptions - What I Thought I Saw, Peta Owens-Liston

Stereotyping rules how we perceive each other. What stories and opportunities are we missing out on because of our reflex to judge based on our first impression or that first mental paragraph of who we think somebody is? During this interactive presentation, accompanied by a traveling exhibit, we become more self-aware of our own judgments and all the “what I thought I saw” moments surrounding us. We explore the complicated nature of our visual intelligence and how our impulse to stereotype influences the way we perceive the world around us because we see the world through a highly personal and imperfect visual lens.

About the Presenter(s)

Peta Owens-Liston is the author of the book and traveling exhibit, “what I thought I saw” – a “movement” to raise self-awareness about the stories we miss when we judge or stereotype. With the exhibit, she has presented at schools, universities, at conferences and in corporate environments. A seasoned freelance writer, Peta’s styles range from corporate to creative, journalistic to first-person narrative. She has worked for Time magazine and National Geographic.