News From The Community

Pay it Forward

On Wednesday, March 24, Americans acknowledged Equal Pay Day, a day which shine’s a light on the continued gap in salaries between men and women. Just as a start, let’s take note of the actual data. In the United States, white women on average make only 82 cents for every dollar made by an average...

Representative Khanh Pham

When I was a young child, growing up in the safe suburbs of Oklahoma and Southern California, I was perplexed at how my parents seemed to see dangers everywhere. It wasn’t until I was much older that I learned about their own childhoods, growing up amidst the turbulence of war in Vietnam, and how those...

Robin Ye

The American chapter of my family began a quarter century ago. My father moved to Huntsville, Alabama in the early 1990’s to pursue a master’s degree in the United States. My mother would raise two kids in America and work as a successful career software engineer — eleven years of that career at Intel. My...

Kaberi Banerjee Murthy

Like too many in America, despite being born here, I have often felt like the Other. Though I grew up in a racially diverse town, I was brown in a world that only seemed to recognize Black and white. I learned the carols for Christmas, then the dreidel song for Hanukkah, and as time went...

Niyati Desai

As I reflect on the recent increase in violence against Asian Americans, I am confronted with my own journey of belonging in the United States. As a first generation Indian American, I routinely navigate a complicated terrain of interpersonal questions and assumptions about identity, family, community, and a vision of ‘the American Dream.’ The sacrifices...

Commissioner Susheela Jayapal

On March 21, 1910 — more than a century ago — a mob of two hundred white residents of St Johns, then an independent town just north of Portland, attacked a small community of Indian immigrants who had arrived at the tail end of the nineteenth century to work at the local lumber mills. The...

Commissioner Lori Stegmann

As a woman, I am constantly reminded of what it is like to feel unsafe. I often plan to do my errands during daylight hours, am mindful of the lighting in parking lots, and never put myself in a position where I could be surprised. To a degree, there are factors that I can control,...

Lauren Waude

A few weeks ago, I called my mom, as I often do, on my way to the Japanese market to ask what she wanted me to pick up for her. The market has been a vital source of connection to our culture and community, often the only place we can find the foods that are...

Suk Rhee

In 2020, the local government I work for adopted anti-racism and equity as core values (alongside transparency, communication, collaboration and fiscal responsibility). This was, in part, in response to the pandemics of racism and COVID-19. We have heard similar words before, including the 14th amendment, Civil Rights Act, and Voting Rights Act. Yet none would...

Mari Watanabe

White nationalism and anti-Asian hate have been a part of America since the Chinese immigrants arrived in the 1800s. It is nothing new. The pandemic exacerbated hate against Asians and Pacific Islanders (API). We know from history that in times of crisis, people project blame onto a group or race. In the case of this...