Diversity Pledge report shows progress, concerns

Comment

Diversity Pledge report shows progress, concerns

Prosper Portland has released a new report from DHM Research that shows progress in diverse hiring in Portland, but there's still areas of concern. Based on an online survey as part of TechTown Diversity Pledge, the data was compared to results from 2016 and shows an increase in the representation of women and people of color among new hires and higher-up positions, but their representation among leadership and management roles is stagnate. 

See the data and learn more at the TechTown PDX website

 

Comment

Greater Portland Inc president and CEO to appear on Brookings Institution panel in Washington D.C.

Comment

Greater Portland Inc president and CEO to appear on Brookings Institution panel in Washington D.C.

Janet LaBar will discuss how regions can use market prioritization to influence growth through action and investments

Janet.jpg

The Brookings Institution has invited Greater Portland Inc (GPI) President and CEO Janet LaBar to appear before a symposium of economic development professionals and share the Portland metro’s experience in identifying an approach to prioritizing countries for trade and foreign direct investment (FDI). LaBar will appear on a panel at the Global Cities Initiative Cohort Working Session on July 11-12 in Washington, D.C. 

Central to its core competencies in marketing and business development, GPI markets the region as a top location for global investment and trade. In 2012, the Portland metro was among a handful of regions across the country selected to participate in the Global Cities Initiative (GCI), a joint project of Brookings Institution and JPMorgan Chase. Greater Portland’s dynamic clusters of economic activity, diverse place-based and higher education assets, global brands, existing international ties and booming productivity made it a natural GCI choice. Three years later, through another GCI cohort, the Portland metro developed a regional strategy, known as Greater Portland Global, to increase both trade and FDI activity. Today, GPI and its partners have prioritized three markets for FDI: Japan, Germany and Canada. 

Moderating the panel will be Joseph Parilla, fellow at the Brookings Metropolitan Policy Program. Appearing alongside LaBar are Katy Sinnott, vice president of international business development at Wisconsin Economic Development Corp, and Steve Weitzner, founder and principal at Silverlode Consulting

LaBar led the planning process for Greater Portland 2020—the region’s five-year comprehensive economic development strategy under which Greater Portland Global nests. Focused on three core strategies of People, Business and Place, the plan is rooted in guiding principles of equity and advancement, and has a goal of shared economic prosperity for all across the region.

Comment

Greater Portland Inc recruits local economic development professional to lead Greater Portland 2020

Comment

Greater Portland Inc recruits local economic development professional to lead Greater Portland 2020

Lloyd Purdy previously served as economic development manager for the City of Tigard

Greater Portland Inc (GPI), the region’s economic development organization, has recruited local economic development professional Lloyd Purdy as vice president of regional competitiveness to lead an action oriented, region-wide strategy focused on shared economic prosperity for all residents. 

At Greater Portland Inc Purdy will lead the implementation of Greater Portland 2020, the five-year comprehensive economic development strategy that aligns business, education and civic leaders around regional economic priorities. This framework focuses on three core strategies: 1.) People: Recruit, develop and advance the region’s talent, 2.) Business: Grow business and pioneer innovation, and 3.) Place: Improve infrastructure to meet the needs of people, business, and innovation. 

“Lloyd brings strategic thinking, tenacity in forging partnerships, and a commitment to community,” said Janet LaBar, GPI president and CEO. “He’s up for the task of putting Greater Portland on a path to economic prosperity, and he has an earnest drive to collaborate with and lead our partners through this transformation.” 

Key Greater Portland 2020 initiatives include Diversity in Leadership, created to increase the diversity of talent represented in leadership roles at firms around the region; Greater Portland Global, designed to increase trade and attract foreign investment; and supporting regional initiatives from partners such as Metro and its Economic Value Atlas, and the Columbia-Willamette Workforce Collaborative and Technology Association of Oregon and their Tech Talent Strategy. 

“Our region draws strength from its diversity and identity,” said Purdy. “Through partnership building we will continue to innovate, create a culture of equity, and prosper.” 

Purdy was previously the economic development manager for the City of Tigard. There he created and led an economic development program that included securing more than $8 million in federal, state, and developer funding for key infrastructure projects. He was also the founding director of Oregon City’s downtown development program, and is credited with spurring a renaissance in that historic district.

Comment

​Local job-placement organizations provide career kickstart for students

Comment

​Local job-placement organizations provide career kickstart for students

Greater Portland 2020 and Greater Portland Ambassadors host panel discussion on how to prepare the next generation of employees and leaders as part of the Diversity in Leadership Best Practices series.

While many mid-career employees can look back fondly at their first jobs as teenagers, young people today are entering the workforce with a steep learning curve. Only one in four can find a summer job, said Reece Lord of WorkSystems, who is part of the SummerWorks team that pairs 16-24 year olds with office internships. “Without that first job, how do you get that second?”

Reece Lord, center, of the WorkSystems SummerWorks program

Reece Lord, center, of the WorkSystems SummerWorks program

Fostering this talent pipeline was the topic of discussion today at the second Diversity in Leadership Best Practices event, hosted by Greater Portland 2020 and Greater Portland Ambassadors. The series showcases and celebrates programs of organizations and businesses that are striving to increase diversity raises awareness of these initiatives among the region’s public and private sector communities. Space for the second event in the series was provided by WorkSystems in Portland.

Lord was just one of three panelists at the event, which also included Ben Sand, the CEO of the Portland Leadership Foundation and the Emerging Leaders Internship; and Hans Erickson, the work-based learning coordinator at Partners in Careers. The discussion was led by Janet LaBar, President and CEO of Greater Portland Inc.

Ben Sand, of Portland Leadership Foundation

Ben Sand, of Portland Leadership Foundation

While the population of the Greater Portland region continues to diversify, that diversity isn’t well reflected in management, leadership and C-suite roles at major public and private institutions, said Sand.

“Many of our best and brightest don’t believe that they are welcome,” said Sand. His organization recruits students from the region and as far away as the University of Oregon in Eugene for local internships. They pre-screen applicants and handle administrative talks like payroll, while the participating companies commit to interviewing at least three candidates for an open position. The process is competitive and the executives who worked with the interns in 2016 were very impressed, he said.

Sand introduces Ruben Estrada, one of the Emerging Leaders Intership students.

Sand introduces Ruben Estrada, one of the Emerging Leaders Intership students.

“It’s not that the talent isn’t in our region, it’s that there’s a lack of connection between the folks in the private sector and certain folks in other sectors,” he said. The Emerging Leaders Internship had 607 applications for 86 spots, and it hopes to place 120 interns in the summer of 2017. The majority of its students are women and/or minorities.

If students don’t yet have relevant skills to find their first job, an organization like Partners in Careers can help. Working with 100 students in Vancouver, Washington, it organizes mock interviews, resume workshops, and helps out-of-school students earn their GED. Many students have to balance their time with stresses in their personal life like poverty, homelessness, or language barriers.

Hans Erickson, left, of Partners in Careers.

Hans Erickson, left, of Partners in Careers.

“Especially at first jobs which aren’t always the most fun,” said Hans Erickson, a former participant and now a learning coordinator, “It’s hard to have a good attitude when there are a lot of things going on in your life.”

Organizations like these provide the essential skills needed to create a powerful talent pipeline in the Greater Portland Region, a key step toward the Greater Portland 2020 initiative’s goal of creating economic prosperity for all the citizens of the region.

If you’d like to learn more about Greater Portland Inc, click here.

To learn more about the Greater Portland Ambassadors program, click here.

Comment

Join us for our next Diversity in Leadership event

Comment

Join us for our next Diversity in Leadership event

Diversity in Leadership

Greater Portland Ambassadors invite you to our next Greater Portland 2020 Diversity in Leadership event. Learn about leadership and skills development programs that prepare the next generation to enter the workforce. 

Speakers include representatives from Emerging Leaders InternshipSummerWorks and Partners in Careers.

A light breakfast will be provided.

Tuesday, June 27, 8-9:30 a.m. 

Worksystems, Inc., in the Columbia Room

1618 SW 1st Ave., Portland OR 97201

 

 

Comment