In December 2021, I accepted the challenge from Mayor Wheeler of serving as Interim Director for The Office of Equity and Human Rights. The opportunity to support and lead this team of passionate professionals is a truly humbling honor and thanks to our past directors, Dante J. James and Dr. Markisha Webster, we are able to continue forward with a strong foundation for the Office of Equity.
My overall goals for the transition are simple:
- Support and coach the Office of Equity team so we can continue to institutionalize equity in City government on behalf of systemically excluded and institutionally oppressed Portlanders.
- Continue to seek meaningful engagement with community to inform our work.
- Assist Mayor Wheeler with hiring our next visionary director.
- Set up the new director for success by handing off a highly motivated, more efficient, and more effective bureau.
Although there is always much more to accomplish, the Office of Equity experienced some accelerated movement in our work over the past two years, thanks to our growing capacity; community demand for City accountability around racial, disability, and LGBTQIA+ equity; and lessons learned from our major roles in the City’s COVID-19 response. We will continue the momentum, build on our successes with urgency, and continue to listen and learn from community.
Please feel free to contact me if you have questions, comments, or feedback.