The 2011 Spirit of Portland Awards were held on October 27th at the East Portland Community Center in the Mill Park neighborhood. Honorees were selected by a committee of representatives from the Neighborhood District Coalitions and Districts, Council offices, Business Associations, non-profit community organizations, past award winners, and the Office of Neighborhood Involvement (ONI). Nominees were evaluated in the following areas:
- Enrichment of our community and neighborhoods
- Participation in outstanding projects
- Providing a special service to the community
- Raising cross-cultural awareness
- Demonstration of responsiveness, creativity and civic values
The Spirit of Portland Awards were first held in 1985, and were instituted to honor individuals and organizations for work in our community. Over the years, the number of awards has grown to include multiple categories and honor more than 30 individuals, organizations, and businesses annually. For example, Lents, an East Portland neighborhood, was recognized as Neighborhood of the Year for its efforts to enhance livability through various education, urban renewal, parks, business development, and streetscape projects. The 82nd Avenue of Roses Business Association, also in East Portland, received the Business Association of the Year award.
The Portland Observer published this delightful account of the event.
Patrick Philpott at the Office of Neighborhood Involvement kindly provided the following event photos:
Lents Neighborhood Association, Neighborhood Association of the Year Winner
Erika Silver, Emerging Community Leader Award Winner
Gil Frey, Commissioner's Award Winner
Opal Strong, Community Harmony Award Winner
Oregon DREAMers, Youth Volunteer of the Year Winners
Incight's Scott Haley, Non-Profit Winner
Senator Bob Boyer, Commissioner's Award Winner
Terri Preeg Riggsby, Sandy Diedrich Environmental Award Winner
The other three Commissioners presented awards, too. Mayor Adams was out of town on a trade trip in Asia. The cost of the event is shared between all five Council offices. Musical inspiration was provided by the Highland Gospel Choir. It was a wonderful evening, filled with ilustrations of all that is right with Portland.