Happening Hours

Thoughtfully Engaging, Together & Virtually

Wednesday Happening Hours

By Bobby Cochran and Emily Irish


Video ConferenceSometimes it’s nice to just grab a beverage, discuss a good idea, and simply connect.

As the world gets ready to celebrate this 50th Anniversary of Earth Day on April 22nd, our communities are facing a historic challenge to recover from the impacts of COVID-19. Activists came together as an environmental community in 1970, but what can we do today for a more equitable future? 

We want to provide a chance to thoughtfully come together and reconnect. For the next month+, Willamette Partnership and our partners will be hosting a series of “Wednesday Happening Hours.” Join us and your peers for a virtual happy hour to discuss how our communities are reacting during this crisis and how it can become an opportunity to create a more equitable future. 

We will continue to announce new Happening Hour webinars as they are scheduled. Join us for one or all of them and continue to check back here for updates on new topics we will be discussing with the health and conservation communities.

Happening Hour Update

The Happening Hours started as a space to connect, where colleagues could come together to share their thoughts on the current challenges we’re facing, but they have become more than that. The question that keeps resurfacing for us is, are there other conversations around equitable recovery happening around the state, and if so, where, who’s at the table, and how can we link these conversations together?

To help answer these questions, we’re asking you to share what you know about our state’s equitable recovery plans. Fill out the Google Form to tell us about the conversations you’ve heard or been a part of, what gaps you may have seen, what you’d like included in those conversations, and if there is an opportunity to connect.

Do you know about other Equitable Recovery conversations around Oregon?


Happening Hour Webinars

Equitable Recovery in the Federal Stimulus

Our third Happening Hour shifted focus to Equitable Recovery and the Federal Stimulus. We discussed lessons learned from the 2008 Recession’s recovery. What was successful, what actions didn’t have an equitable perspective, and how can we ensure that we include equity as we begin reopening communities?

Wednesday, May 20, 2020 4:00 – 5:00 pm PST 

Don’t Rebuild the Systems that Broke – How to shape federal actions and prepare Oregon communities for equitable recovery

A discussion around the next steps in how federal action can support our communities as we rebuild systems and how we can prepare communities for equitable change, together.

Wednesday, May 6, 2020 4:00 – 5:00 pm PST 

Featured Speakers

Jill Fuglister, Healthy Environment Portfolio Director, Meyer Memorial Trust

Sam Baraso, Program Manager, Portland Clean Energy Fund

What can the conservation community do to support equitable recovery?

We want to thank everyone who participated in our first Happening Hour! Read about the discussions had and our featured speakers, here.

Wednesday, April 22, 2020 4:00 – 5:00 pm PST 

Featured Speakers

Tina Tamai, Coordinator, Hawaii Good Food Alliance

Paulina López, Executive Director, Duwamish River Cleanup Coalition

Nils Christoffersen, Executive Director, Wallowa Resources

Thank you to our Annual Sponsors!


Columbia Bank logo
econorthwest logo, oregon's bounty
Port of Portland Logo
Sitka logo
tualatin soil and water conservation disctrib
Wildwood Mahonia John Miller logo
wolf water resources logo oregon's bounty fundraiser 2018

Have a topic you’d like to discuss?

Reach out to Emily Irish to help organize a Happening Hour with Willamette Partnership, irish@willamettepartnership.org.

Bobby Cochran led Willamette Partnership's work around building community resilience and innovation. He is passionate about supporting community leaders to move resources from dumb stuff to better stuff - especially when that means clean water, better health, and economic inclusion. Bobby is now with the Rural Community Assistance Partnership. He received a Ph.D./M.A. in Urban Studies/Conflict Resolution from Portland State University.


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