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OR Black History in Portland

Walidah will run an interactive program on Oregon Black history as the keynote for the Oregon Nurses' Association's annual conference Sept. 20th 9 am- 12 pm. The keynote is open to all, and free to ONA members.

2017 ONA Annual Bargaining Unit Leadership Conference

9/19/2017 to 9/20/2017

When:Sept. 19-20, 2017

Where:921 SW 6th Ave
Portland, Oregon  97204
United States

Cara Olexa (Sign in to view e-mail address)


Event Details

Save the Date: ONA Annual Bargaining Unit Leadership Conference
Sept. 19-20, 2017
Portland, OR
Upgrade your nurse leadership skills at ONA’s Bargaining Unit Leadership Conference Sept. 19-20 at the Portland Hilton and Executive Towers in downtown Portland.

Day 2, Wednesday, Sept. 20 Time

9:00 a.m. - noon

Keynote: Why Aren't there More Black People in Oregon Walidah Imarisha

Why Aren’t There More Black People In Oregon? A Hidden History Have you ever wondered why the Black population in Oregon is so small? Oregon has a history not only of Black exclusion and discrimination, but also of a vibrant Black culture that helped sustain many communities throughout the state—a history that is not taught in schools. Author and educator Walidah Imarisha will lead participants through a timeline of Black history in Oregon that speaks to the history of race, identity, and power in this state and the nation. Participants will discuss how history, politics, and culture have shaped—and will continue to shape — the landscape not only for Black Oregonians but all Oregonians. Watch an excerpt from Walidah’s program here.

About Walidah Imarisha: A historian at heart, reporter by (w)right, rebel by reason, Walidah Imarisha is an educator, writer, public scholar and spoken word artist.

She edited two anthologies, Octavia's Brood: Science Fiction Stories From Social Justice Movements and Another World is Possible. Imarisha’s nonfiction book Angels with Dirty Faces: Three Stories of Crime, Prison, and Redemption won a 2017 Oregon Book Award. She is also the author of the poetry collectionScars/Stars. She is currently working on an Oregon Black history book, forthcoming from AK Press.

Imarisha has taught in Stanford University’s Program of Writing and Rhetoric, Portland State University's Black Studies Department, Oregon State University's Women Gender Sexuality Studies Department, and Southern New Hampshire University's English Department.

For six years, she presented statewide as a public scholar with Oregon Humanities' Conversation Project on topics such as Oregon Black history, alternatives to incarceration, and the history of hip hop.

She has toured the country several times performing, lecturing and challenging, and has shared the stage with folks as different as Angela Davis, Cornel West, Amiri Baraka, Nikki Giovanni, Kenny Muhammad of the Roots, Chuck D, Michael Franti and Spearhead, Robin D.G. Kelley, Umar bin Hassan from The Last Poets, Boots Riley, Saul Williams, Ani DiFranco, John Irving, dead prez, Rebecca Solnit, and Yuri Kochiyama.

Who Can Attend The Bargaining Unit Leadership Conference is open for ONA Professional Union Members and Student Affiliates. If you want to attend but are unsure about your membership status, please contact us to determine eligibility. Registration This leadership event is FREE for ONA members and student affiliates. Due to the nature of the schedule, members must attend both days of the event. Conference registration deadline is Wednesday, Sept. 13. The registration cancellation deadline is Wednesday, Sept. 13. Register using the "register" button at the top of the page

If you would like to attend the "Why Aren’t There More Black People In Oregon? A Hidden History" session but cannot attend the rest of the conference, you can register for that solo session and lunch on Wednesday here (login required)

Nursing Contact Hours Attendees will be able to earn continuing nursing education contact hours at the conference. Information about which courses and sessions qualify for CE and the number of CE hours offered will be posted before the start of the conference. Oregon Nurses Association is accredited as a provider of continuing nursing education by the American Nurses Credentialing Center’s Commission on Accreditation. Travel and Lodging ONA members who live 100 miles or more away from the conference may be eligible to be reimbursed up to $180 for lodging. The ONA reserved block of rooms at the Portland Hilton are now filled, so attendees will be responsible for making their own hotel reservations and paying for their lodging, and those who qualify will be reimbursed after the conference. If you have questions about hotels or about reimbursement eligibility, please contact Cara Olexa at

Parking For attendees staying at the Hilton, parking will be included in the fee for their room. For those not staying at the hotel, parking vouchers for the Hilton parking lot (921 SW 6th Ave) will be provided upon arrival at the conference. Questions?

If you have questions about eligibility or the process, please contact Cara Olexa at

Earlier Event: December 4
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Later Event: September 25
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