Must Reads

OCF Releases the 2017 Tracking Oregon’s Progress Report Not Everything is Equal: Creating Opportunity for All Oregon Children

The Oregon Community Foundation (OCF) has just released the 2017 Tracking Oregon’s Progress (TOP) report focused on Oregon’s opportunity gap. The report, titled “Toward a Thriving Future: Closing the Opportunity Gap for Oregon’s Kids,” addresses the widening opportunity gap Oregon children face. The circumstances of one’s birth and longstanding patterns of discrimination determine the opportunities that are available and the life paths that are achievable.

Key findings from the report include:

  • Child poverty is on the rise, with long-term negative consequences. 47 percent of Oregon children are being raised in low-income families.
  • Opportunity partly depends on where a child is raised. In 23 of Oregon’s 36 counties, less than half of the children born into low-income families will reach the middle class or beyond as adults.
  • Family structure and circumstances impact children’s future success. Low-income children are more likely to move out of poverty if they are born to married parents, but one-third of Oregon children live with just one parent, and single-parent families are on the rise in rural Oregon.
  • Educational disparities begin early and persist. The gap in social and cognitive development between low-income children and their higher-income peers begins in infancy.

However, there is much to be done to improve prospects for Oregon’s children. Highlights include:

  • Encourage economically and racially integrated communities by supporting collaborative affordable housing solutions. Increasing the availability of affordable housing in opportunity-rich neighborhoods gives low-income families better access to jobs, high-quality schools and safe communities.
  • Strengthen families and foster better child-parent relationships by increasing access to parenting education. Healthy relationships with parents promote brain development.
  • Increase the availability of family-wage jobs by supporting small businesses, entrepreneurs and rural job creation.
  • Ensure that more children are ready for kindergarten by increasing access to high-quality, affordable early childhood education. Early environments that foster learning, whether in the home or in child care and preschool settings, are critical for future academic success.

OCF is committed to addressing the opportunity gap through partnerships, grantmaking and leadership.

To read the full TOP Report, please visit oregoncf.org/top-indicators.

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About The Oregon Community Foundation

The mission of The Oregon Community Foundation is to improve lives for all Oregonians through the power of philanthropy. OCF works with individuals, families, businesses and organizations to create charitable funds to support the community causes they care about. Through these funds OCF awarded more than $108 million in grants and scholarships in 2016. For more information about OCF, please visit: www.oregoncf.org

Arnerich Massena Forecasts Investment Trends of 2018

Portland-based investment firm Arnerich Massena, an independent investment advisory firm specializing in private wealth management, endowment & foundation, retirement plan consulting services, and impact investing strategies, takes a look into 2018 to prognosticate some of the cultural changes that may affect the investment environment next year.
 
The firm’s forecasts are not investment recommendations, but provide a flavor of what investors might expect to see in the New Year. Co-CIO Bryan Shipley, CFA, CAIA, remarks, “in 2018, we are facing the frontier of exciting changes, which could be called disruptive or innovative, depending on your perspective. We want to provide investors with some context for what the environment may look like as we move into 2018.”
 
1.    Disruptive Technology
Imagine a world where nobody drives their own car or visits a grocery store, or where you print everything you need at home, from shoes to furniture. This world is closer than you may think, with the advent of new technologies like self-driving cars, drone delivery services, 3-D printing, and artificial intelligence. Industries like robotics, machine learning, and healthcare are positioned for radical advancement, while we’ll continue to see shopping malls close and car dealerships shrink. As we dive deeper into a world based on technology, data security will be a crucial topic in 2018.
 
One of the most disruptive technologies — with vast potential for multiple uses — is blockchain technology, which has given rise to cryptocurrencies. In addition to being an interesting foray for speculative investors, cryptocurrencies also represent another nail in the coffin for cash. Whether bitcoin or dollars, the digitization of money will continue in 2018.
 
2.    Private Markets Go Mainstream
Today, there are half as many U.S.-listed public stocks as there were 20 years ago. The Wilshire 5000 Index no longer has 5,000 companies because there are not enough publicly traded companies! There is a consolidation at the upper end — where behemoths like Google, Amazon, and AT&T almost monopolize whole industries. At the smaller end of the spectrum, companies are waiting longer to go public, some until they can no longer even be classified as small cap stocks. Becoming or remaining a private company allows for greater flexibility to innovate and take risks. In this environment, investors are beginning to realize the importance of private equity alternative investments. With a possible return of public market volatility in 2018, we believe this trend will continue and investors will be looking to private markets to round out their portfolios.
 
3.    The Sharing and On-Demand Economy
Uber is now the largest taxi company in the world, yet they don’t own any cars! Similarly, Airbnb is the largest hotel company in the world, yet it owns no property. Some of the disruptive (or creative) technology listed above is making possible a new kind of marketplace, called by some the “sharing economy” based on sharing cars, bicycles, and homes, or dubbed the “on-demand economy” because ownership is no longer necessary; one can simply order what one needs when one needs it. As it becomes easier to connect people and things, this trend will continue to expand, making possible both micro-businesses and the companies that organize these marketplaces.
 
4.    The Rise of Millennials and Values-Based Investing
Millennials are taking over! Not really taking over, but the economic engine is beginning to look to millennials for the next few decades of growth, which means shifting to the values that millennials bring to the table. New millennial leadership roles in companies could change business models considerably. This is a generation that is used to having all knowledge at their fingertips, and are thus more connected with the process of how their products are made and how their services are delivered. They don’t just want good products and services; they are looking for their purchases to align with their values. Similarly, millennial investors will be seeking investments that support their principles and ideals. Look for the development of new ways to track an investment’s impact and positive influence on the world, which will become more important as the next generation moves into the economic driver’s seat.  
 
5.    Stepping out onto the Frontier
Often, an emerging markets rally is followed by a boom in frontier markets, as investors look a little further out for return. In addition to this boost, frontier markets have other winds behind them as well. As emerging markets further stabilize and become competitive technologically, much of the manufacturing work is moving to frontier markets. With large populations of working-age adults and significant room for economic development, frontier markets offer attractive demographics, cheap valuation, and fast growth potential.
 
“Civilization is on the verge of major changes,” says Tony Arnerich, co-CIO. “Soon, we can look forward to life-lengthening healthcare technologies, 3-D printed homes, appliances that communicate with one another, and self-driving vehicles, to name a few. Not all of that will fully manifest in 2018, of course, but we are seeing the beginning of how some of these technologies will change the way we live our lives, and the way we invest our assets.” As this revolution unfolds, Arnerich Massena is looking forward to the opportunities the future is bringing and incorporating them into a thoughtful and disciplined investment strategy.
 


 
About Arnerich Massena: Founded in 1991, Arnerich Massena is a Portland-based independent investment advisory firm servicing corporate pension and profit sharing plans, private clients, endowments, foundations, charitable organizations, and trusts and estates. The firm provides traditional portfolio management and investing for clients, and is also widely known for successfully investing in high-impact areas like water resources, sustainable agriculture, fishing, healthcare, and clean energy technology. Arnerich Massena strives to be a business that exemplifies both corporate citizenship and professional service, and has received awards for its innovations in corporate philanthropy.  More information is available at www.arnerichmassena.com.

Arnerich Massena Publishes New White Paper: Retirement Plan Best Practices: Investment Menu Construction

Portland-based investment firm Arnerich Massena, an independent investment advisory firm specializing in retirement plan consulting services, endowment & foundation, private wealth management, and impact investing strategies, has published its latest white paper, Retirement Plan Best Practices: Investment Menu Construction. The white paper is the third in a five-part series outlining retirement plan best practices; the series began with plan governance and plan design and will also cover plan monitoring and participant education. Investment Menu Construction examines how to build a retirement plan investment menu that will result in improved long-term participant outcomes.
 
“The move from defined benefit plans to defined contribution plans shifted the investment decision-making process to participants in a way they hadn’t been confronted with in the defined benefit era,” the paper notes. “As an industry we are getting better at understanding how to really help participants invest successfully, much of which comes from our increased knowledge of the science of behavioral economics.” The paper discusses how findings from behavioral economists can help guide the construction of an investment menu. By understanding how participants make decisions, we can design a menu that will make that process easier.
 
“Plan sponsors are challenged to build an investment menu lineup that meets a number of different criteria,” says Terri Schwartz, managing director of institutional services and business development. “They need to provide enough diversification but keep the menu simple to use, offer options that are appropriate for a variety of ages and life stages, and manage investment expenses, to name just a few. We want to help sponsors navigate this territory to ultimately help their participants to a secure retirement.”
 
Contributors to the paper include Ryan Cunningham, CAIA; Corrie Oliva, CFA; Jillian Perkins; Terri Schwartz; and Chris Van Dyke, CFA, CAIA.
 
A downloadable version of Retirement Plan Best Practices: Investment Menu Construction  is available at http://arnerichmassena.com/pdf/white-papers/Menu_construction_final.pdf.
 
 
About Arnerich Massena
Founded in 1991, Arnerich Massena is a Portland-based independent investment advisory firm servicing corporate pension and profit sharing plans, private clients, endowments, foundations, charitable organizations, and trusts and estates. The firm provides traditional portfolio management and investing for clients, and is also widely known for successfully investing in high-impact areas like water resources, sustainable agriculture, fishing, healthcare, and clean energy technology. Arnerich Massena strives to be a business that exemplifies both corporate citizenship and professional service, and has received awards for its innovations in corporate philanthropy.  More information is available at www.arnerichmassena.com

Sussman Shank LLP Awarded Gold Certification for Sustainability at Work Program

Thanks to the leadership efforts of Sussman Shank LLP's Sustainability Committee, the firm is proud to announce it has achieved Sustainability at Work's Gold Certification for the next three years, through 2020.  The certification recognizes the firm's commitment to helping make Portland one of the cleanest, most sustainable cities in the country.

Sustainability at Work was formed in 2007 as part of a City of Portland initiative to help businesses improve their environmental practices.  This program has been informed by national and local research, input from Portland businesses, and by the expertise of local partners to provide participants the tools needed to succeed in their sustainability efforts in the workplace.

Sustainability at Work offers three levels of certification to recognize businesses' positive impacts on the environment and community: Gold, Silver, and Certified. In order to receive Gold Certification within its office environment, Sussman Shank completed many actions to maintain daily sustainability.

Some of Sussman Shank's sustainability initiatives include:
    •    Caterers who follow sustainable practices – reusable dishware, buffet style serving, minimal packaging, etc.

    •    A system in place to gather employee feedback, comments, and suggestions related to sustainability actions at work.  This includes our annual State of Sustainability meeting, blurbs in our Daily Buzz, and a Sustainability Committee available at all times.

    •    Alternative transportation for work-related trips whenever possible (walk, bike, transit, carshare, carpool, and/or electric vehicles).

    •    Bicycle tire repair kit, air pump, and a spare lock are available for employees and visitors.

    •    Occupancy sensors for lighting are used throughout the office.   

    •    Yearly participation in the Bike More Challenge.

    •    Two-week pedometer challenge each year to encourage employees to walk more.

    •    Recycling and compost receptacles are provided in eating areas.

Sussman Shank's Sustainability Committee chair, Steven Mayock, shares, "The Sustainability Committee is constantly evaluating our practices to see how we can have less of an impact on the environment while still providing quality service to our clients.  It's great to be recognized for our efforts, but this doesn't mean our work stops here." 

Earning Sustainability at Work's Gold Certification is an honor, and Sussman Shank looks forward to its continued and improved initiatives toward sustainability.   

Sussman Shank LLP Client Spotlight: BeeHive Station

At Sussman Shank LLP we are proud to spotlight our latest client, BeeHive Station.  There is a lot of buzz surrounding this food pod in South Salem, which is the city's first of its kind.  While the food cart culture has sustained in Portland, this is a new concept for Salem. Putting together this centralized area (referred to as a pod) allows for variety that the community was seeking in one location. 

BeeHive Station officially opened on June 3rd, and successfully introduced the food pod experience to its community as well as to passersby taking the local exit off of I-5 North or South.  Beehive is home to several food carts and mobile kitchens including Bobablastic, Dalia's Taqueria, Kye's Cuisine, Chavelo's Ceviche, Cindy Lou's Smoked Meats and BBQ, and most recently, Gyrolicious. BeeHive was recently featured in theStatesman Journal(link below) touting that "Some Salem vendors have tripled or quadrupled business since moving to Beehive Station."     

Sussman Shank attorney, Amy Geerhart, explains that "working with Kelly and BeeHive Station is a very rewarding experience.  We are always happy to help small business owners pursue their passions."  Amy and other lawyers at Sussman Shank have worked with BeeHive Station on startup services, leases, and employment.  We look forward to the continued growth and success of Salem's first food pod at BeeHive Station. 

About Beehive Station
The owners of Beehive Station have lived their entire lives in South Salem and have watched the area grow and develop.  This is a family and dog-friendly food pod with free onsite parking and bike parking, and many mobile food trucks for any craving. The goal of BeeHive Station is to have a talented variety of food professionals "who will come collectively together to produce a cornerstone that will satisfy your taste for street food cuisine."   www.beehivestationfoodcarts.com

Lane Powell Again Named One of the Nation’s Best Places to Work for LGBTQ Equality

Lane Powell is proud to announce that it received, for the second year in a row, a perfect score of 100 percent on the 2018 Corporate Equality Index (CEI), a national benchmarking survey and report on corporate policies and practices related to LGBTQ workplace equality, administered by the Human Rights Campaign Foundation.

According to Jill Long, Lane Powell’s Director of Professional Development and Diversity, “Our perfect score reflects Lane Powell’s commitment to not only foster inclusivity, but also our commitment to implement policies and practices that support equality. We are so proud to be recognized by the Human Rights Campaign Foundation as a Best Place to Work for LGBTQ Equality for the second straight year. It is central to our firm values to be constantly striving for workplace equality and the recognition from the Human Rights Campaign Foundation is a true honor.”

The 2018 CEI report evaluates LGBTQ-related policies and practices including non-discrimination workplace protections, domestic partner benefits, transgender-inclusive health care benefits, competency programs and public engagement with the LGBTQ community. Lane Powell’s efforts in satisfying all of the CEI’s criteria resulted in a 100 percent ranking and the designation as a Best Place to Work for LGBTQ Equality.

Lane Powell President Chuck Riley stated, “We are honored to be recognized by the Human Rights Campaign Foundation as a Best Place to Work for LGBTQ Equality. As we celebrate our second straight year of receiving a perfect score, we continue to dedicate ourselves to creating a workplace where our people can thrive both personally and professionally.”

For more information on the 2018 Corporate Equality Index, or to download a free copy of the report, visit www.hrc.org/cei

 

Lane Powell is a Pacific Northwest law firm with a national — and international — reach. Our approximately 200 attorneys are trusted advisors, counsel and advocates for individuals, small and large businesses, including Fortune 50 companies. Since 1875, clients have relied on Lane Powell’s exceptional legal acumen and forward-thinking approach to resolve their most complex business, litigation and regulatory challenges. lanepowell.com
 
The Human Rights Campaign Foundation is the educational arm of America’s largest civil rights organization working to achieve equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual transgender and queer people. HRC envisions a world where LGBTQ people are embraced as full members of society at home, at work and in every community.

Conexiones Event Successfully Connects Latinos and Partners To Address Common Goals for Oregon

The Oregon Community Foundation’s Latino Partnership Program (LPP) hosted more than 200 Oregonians from small business, education, health, government and nonprofit sectors on October 5 and 6 in Salem for the inaugural Conexiones event. The location was significant since OCF’S Northern Willamette Valley Leadership Council launched LPP in the Salem region in the early 2000’s. For the past decade, OCF’s Latino Partnership Program has been collaborating with Latino leaders and organizations around the state to engage with Oregon’s fastest-growing community.

Conexiones continued this engagement by focusing on education, leadership development and community and cultural bridges with attendees. Latinos and non-Latino partners represented regions from Ontario to Ashland, from Lincoln City to Madras and all along the I-5 corridor. The theme, “transforming communities together,” highlighted the important role Latino leaders in Oregon play in transforming the state and encouraged action. Local and national speakers, including Maria Hinojosa and Luis Avila, reminded attendees to believe in their own capacity to create change.

“Latino education achievement and increased Latino representation and leadership remain the focus of our work through the Latino Partnership Program,” said OCF President and CEO, Max Williams. “What’s exciting is all the opportunities that lie ahead of us. Latinos in Oregon will continue to transform our communities and state.”

Through work sessions that dug deeper into issues such as education, small business, health and leadership, attendees made new connections, committed to collaborations and discussed big ideas to identify solutions to key issues, around a set of common goals. The discussions and big ideas that LPP documented will provide a roadmap for Conexiones attendees, their partners and other Oregonians to help move these ideas forward in the future. For more information about Conexiones and OCF’s Latino Partnership Program, visit oregoncf.org/lpp.


About The Oregon Community Foundation: The mission of The Oregon Community Foundation is to improve lives for all Oregonians through the power of philanthropy. OCF works with individuals, families, businesses and organizations to create charitable funds to support the community causes they care about. Through these funds OCF awarded more than $108 million in grants and scholarships in 2016. For more information about OCF, please visit: www.oregoncf.org.

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