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The City of Portland, Oregon

Portland, Oregon

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September 2021

DEEP rainbow logoDiverse and Empowered Employees of Portland (DEEP) is dedicated to enhancing a work environment that is inclusive and supportive of the City of Portland’s diverse workforce that is committed to quality public service.

We would like to welcome our newest DEEP Executive Committee members: K Bullock Clayton (Parks), Jarrell Hosley (BES), and Zuleyma Carballo Figueroa (PBOT/Streetcar). Click here to see the full list of members and find out who in your bureau is on the committee. These members are here for you – connect with them on questions about affinity groups, upcoming trainings, events, what DEEP is up to, and how you can participate.

Recently, DEEP has created sub-committees to focus our work. The sub-committees are open to participation from other employees. Please contact the leaders of each group if you are interested or have questions. Below are the sub-committees and what they are working on:

  1. DEEP’s Purpose - Create a shared understanding of why DEEP Executive Committee exists and have a work plan that focuses the 2021-2022 work for DEEP: Led by Penelope Luedtke and Carol Stahlke, the committee is currently working on DEEP’s Charter and Bylaws.

  2. Communications - Improve cross-bureau, Affinity Group, and DEEP Executive Committee collaboration and connection. Increase transparency and best practices through forms of communication: Led by Miranda Wood, communications have been increased between DEEP Executive Committee members and Affinity Group Leaders. DEEP’s Operations Manual has been updated with communication protocols, and more Affinity Group Leadership Council meetings are being held (every two months). Direct contact for this group is

  3. Recruitment/Retention - Explore strategies and support efforts to bolster recruitment and retention of Black, Indigenous, and People of Color employees: Led by Ana Brophy, the group meets regularly and is working on a gap analysis.

  4. Events - Plan internal city cultural events and work with Affinity Groups to support efforts: Led by Arsenica Perez, the group is updating the events and cultural celebrations webpages and forms. Direct contact for this group is

  5. Leadership Development Program - Re-establish Leadership Development Program for Affinity Groups, with a focus on Black, Indigenous and People of Color employees, and potentially creating future leadership for other affinity groups: Led by Debbie Caselton, the group represented by all the affinity groups are working on a work plan/statement of work and communicating with Procurement on next steps to try and initiate the program in early 2022.

DEEP oversees ten (10) Affinity Groups. The groups always welcome new members. You can go to to be included in any of the groups. Below is more information about each of the affinity groups and some of their activities:

City African American Network (CAAN):

Last year at the beginning of the pandemic, CAAN surveyed Black employees to gauge how well they were being supported as most of us transitioned into working from home. The survey results were a clear indicator that Black employees were unsupported, lacked access to promotional opportunities, and wanted Black leadership in the City of Portland. The survey served as a jumping point for CAAN. We stopped just being a lunch time affinity group and began writing letters to Directors / Commissioners, asking for accountability and wrote a Workforce Report that has gotten Citywide attention. Now that it has been over a year, CAAN is preparing to work with City Council to address the Workforce Report. We hope to share the experiences and feedback of Black employees working for the City and make meaningful change to support us. We also know that during this time of crisis; our work environment in addition to people’s fear, anxiety, trauma responses, and feelings of being overwhelmed can be at an all-time high resulting in negative impacts on mental wellbeing.

While CAAN cannot speak directly with all managers, we hope to use the survey results to present to our policy makers and City Council, so that our voices are heard.


This survey as individuals is confidential and responses are anonymous. Please feel free to email if you want to share more or need additional support. CAAN will be giving away (2) $50 Digital Gift Cards in a drawing to survey participants.

Filipino American City Employees (FACE):

FACE is led by Shaina Hobbs. They are currently seeking additional leadership help and are in the planning phases for a proclamation and events to take place in October for Filipino American History Month. Stay tuned for more information. If you are interested in leadership opportunities, please reach out to Shaina! FACE's webpage is

Hapa, Asian, and Pacific Islander (HAPI):

HAPI is seeking more leadership help. Please reach out to Gina Dake, Ning Jiang, Jeff Selby, or Van Le if you are interested. Go to for more information. 

Latinx PDX:

Latinx Heritage Month is September 15 to October 15. Please join us for the 2021 Latinx Heritage Month Proclamation Council Presentation on Wednesday, September 22 at 10 am.  The program will be in English and Spanish and available through the City of Portland video page.

Leina Gonzalez Baird and Erich J Pacheco are the new interim co-leaders of Latinx PDX. Their goal is to reengage with members and collaborate to develop some concrete actions to advance the mission of Latinx PDX and encourage others to join to expand membership to more Latinx City employees. Their vision is to create a space where culture can be shared, have a sense of belonging, and advocate for Latinx needs as City employees and community members. Please reach out to to participate and if you have questions.

LGBTQ & Friends Affinity Group:

This group is working on many different activities, including policy updates, upcoming events for Queer History Month (October), and working to educate City employees on Trans, Non-Binary and Gender Nonconforming issues. Contact for more information about the group or go the webpage for many great resources at

Multicultural Community & Friends (MCF) Affinity Group:

This group is in the early stages of forming.  They are a group of 1) City multicultural employees 2) who want to have exploratory and encouraging conversations about our city core values by 3) sharing how we experience those values in our life and work. We expect to find commonalities in our personal journeys - both gaps and opportunities - which will increase our capacity as empathetic employees.

For more information about this group go to Leaders will soon have a distribution list to reach them, but for now you can contact Van Le, Kevin Suell, and Marie Del Toro directly.

PDX City Parents:

You may have noticed that the name has changed with the group previously known as PDX City Mamas! Their mission is to create a supportive environment to exchange information, ideas, and challenges to City of Portland Working Parents. Our group will partner with the City to advocate on behalf of working parents, and develop ways to attract, support and retain working parents.

Join PDX City Parents for the first presentation in a series on ADHD. Monday, September 20 at 12:30 PM. Speaker is Bridget O’Boyle-Jordan, MSN, CPNP. Contact Tim Heron or Eileen Kelly for a TEAMS invite.

For more information about this group go to Leaders can be reached at

Slavic Empowerment Team (SET):

This group meets monthly and is led by Svetlana Hedin and Irene Konev. For more information go to

Veterans Empowerment Team (VET):

VET has scheduled meetings every other Friday to provide a supportive space for City employees that may need a space with fellow veterans. This is only for Veterans who are City of Portland employees. Allies and external guests will be invited upon review. Please contact with questions.

Women’s Empowerment (WE):

WE has a mission is to empower and inspire all women within the City of Portland workforce in a supportive, non-judgmental way. Our vision is to create equity in the City of Portland, leading with the elimination of disparities affecting those who identify as women in the City workforce.

For more information about this group and to participate, go to or contact the leaders at