The Official Newsletter of the IAWP Oregon Chapter

Spring 2019 Issue

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By Charlene Grafton,

Hello, IAWP family members,

As winter comes to a close and spring begins to blossom it can mean only one thing…
It is time to submit IAWP award nominations. Please start thinking about co-workers who have “Above and Beyond” tremendous work over the past year who deserve to be honored.

I hope you all we able to vote for our 2019-2020 Board in our recent election. Voting closed on March 25th. We will announce the winners soon.

Our one day conference will provide a great opportunity to network with fellow IAWP members in a relaxed social setting. We will provide wonderful lunch during our Awards Banquet, as we honor our award winners! Plus a fun filled day of educational opportunities as well!

Please plan on attending our Oregon State IAWP Conference on Friday, May 17, 2019, Holiday Inn Portland South, Wilsonville Oregon.


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May 17, 2019 Educational Conference - Holiday Inn, Wilsonville, OR

Partners in Building Hope!

Getting the Most from this Economic Expansion

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Bonnie Milletto - Empowerment Speaker, Author, Event Emcee

Bonnie pours her heart into her career and those she comes in contact with. She has a way of connecting with others on a personal level as she strives to help reframe minds and perspectives. She brings positivity, joy and purpose into seemingly ordinary situations.

Her middle name is empowerment!

Author of Been There, From Stuck To Unstoppable, and Founder of the celebrated annual Amazing You Women’s Conference Bonnie is a top media source on women’s issues, personal growth, youth challenges and living an empowered life.

Beyond Limitations, Building Hope

We all have many limiting beliefs that have defined us and control our lives.

What is a limiting belief? It’s you telling yourself your worth is limited based on past experiences that have become part of your identity. Perhaps your parents never told you they love you and made you feel that you weren’t worthy of love. That formed a limiting belief that you are not worthy of love. That belief showed up in your life every day and became a little voice in your head every time you set a new goal, decide to take action for your life, go for that dream job, be the best parent you want to be - that limiting belief holds you back and tells you,

“Do you really think you deserve this?”

It’s time for a change.

Now is the time to make the most impact for good in people’s lives –

• People - that often don’t feel encouraged to succeed.

• People - that have one or several barriers to overcome.

• People - that have been unsuccessful or marginalized in the workforce.

We all have many limiting beliefs that have defined us and control our lives.

It’s time to help the customers we serve release the limiting beliefs that keep them stuck and show them how to re-write the story they tell themselves every day.

It’s time for a change.

It’s their time to control their lives and turn their “I cant’s,” to “I can, I will!”

Let’s show them how!

Email: bonnie@bonniemilletto.com

Websites: www.bonniemilletto.com



Linda Cohen - The Kindness Catalyst, Speaker, Author & Consultant

"It rarely requires heroic action to help a stranger”

Cohen has been a Kindness Catalyst for over 10 years. She is a professional speaker, presentation coach and the author of 1,000 Mitzvahs: How Small Acts of Kindness Can Heal, Inspire and Change Your Life published in 2011 by Seal Press. Cohen presents to organizations and businesses on the Economy of Kindness. She is the current president of the National Speakers Association Oregon Chapter. In 2017, she was chosen as NSA Oregon Chapter Member of the Year. She received her BA from American Jewish University and an MA from Brandeis University.

The Economy of Kindness

In this highly interactive workshop, Cohen helps employees and leaders at all levels within your organization improve communication, boost teamwork, promote interpersonal interaction and customer service through engagement and focus on cultivating a stronger culture of kindness.

Kindness in the workplace improves employee morale, increases retention and creates loyalty from customers and clients through acts of kindness, authenticity, and vulnerability. Be prepared to laugh and learn how kindness can change everything!

Cohen will illustrate how kindness in action makes a difference using examples of how kindness can impact individuals, communities and businesses.

Cohen will share her three greatest lessons from her own personal story and how she became a “kindness catalyst”: the size of the action doesn’t matter, there is often an unexpected ripple effect, and giving and receiving are often experienced differently. Cohen will enlist the audience to expand the conversation around why kindness can be so crucial in a business setting and what value our individual actions can have on the bottom line of our organizations.

Website: www.lindacohenconsulting.com


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IAWP Welcomes Two New Staff Members

By Grant Axtell

President, International Association of Workforce Professionals

As the International Association of Workforce Professionals continues to grow, it was time for our staff to grow as well. Please help us welcome two new staff members to our IAWP family: Jill Bent and Terri Pasternik.

Jill Bent joins the IAWP team as our Operations and Conference Manager. Jill has helped us in a contractor role the past two years with our conference as well as with projects such as bringing online Your Membership.

Jill has served non-profit associations for more than two decades. In her most recent role as the Director of Member Services, Jill served small to Fortune 500 corporate members, both on the individual and organizational level. She worked alongside association leaders on special member initiatives and association projects while also serving as lead event planner. Her work included all facets of full-service conference and short seminar development, planning annual meetings, regional educational seminars, special legislative and political fundraising events, and sports tournaments. Turing her tenure, Jill received numerous commendations for her work and professionalism, being recognized frequently in member surveys and by association leadership. Prior to entering the non-profit arena, Jill worked as a litigation specialist paralegal focusing on commercial torts. She also enjoyed serving as a legislative aide in the Texas legislature which afforded her an opportunity to volunteer as an advance team planner for a presidential campaign, and serve as a youth delegate at the first political convention in Dallas.

Jill resides in Austin, Texas. She enjoys time with her family, working with children, volunteering in under-served communities and service to her neighborhood association and a local animal rescue. She also lends her expertise in event planning to local school and community events.

In Jill’s new role, she now manages all aspects of the conference as well as many of the day to day business functions of the association such as the association management system, financial management, membership records, board meetings, travel, policy development, document control.

Terri Pasternik joins the IAWP staff as our Education and Certification Manager. As many of you know, after the closing of the office in Kentucky, Terri took it upon herself to manage our WPDP and CWP programs. Terri spent the past 38 years at the Illinois Department of Employment Security. Her last position was as the Statewide Call Center Manager, managing two UI Call Centers, with a combined staff of 110. During her career at IDES she worked in many areas of the agency; including Revenue, Employment Services and Service Delivery. Terri is passionate about education and certification and is excited to enhance and expand educational opportunities at IAWP, not only for the membership, but for everyone interested in workforce development.

In her new role, Terri will manage all aspects of WPDP and CWP as well as our new learning management system. In addition, Terri is charged with providing members ongoing educational opportunities through webinars and self-paced learning as well as creating new certificate programs. In addition, for future conferences, she will procure keynote speakers as well as oversee the process for selecting workshop speakers.


Steve Bent visits Central Office in Salem

By Erika Motzko

It was with much excitment that we had the International Association of Workforce Professional's Director Steve Bent visit us from Austin, Texas on March 19, 2019. Oregon Board members of IAWP met for breakfast at the Sassy Onion at 7 am in Salem. We then moved to Central Office for a meet and greet with Oregon Employment Department IAWP members and employees, then to a meeting with our own Director Kay Erickson and Deputy Director Graham Slater.



By Steve Strain

For several years now, Oregon IAWP Chapter members have become VERY active in IAWP and specifically, IAWP at the international level. Many have taken the path of being an officer on the Oregon Chapter Board of Directors and have gone directly to Board positions on the International Board. This dedication to the association is something to cheer about and take notice. These people care about the success of our association at the State, Regional and international level. Becoming involved in our association is an easy next-step in a rewarding journey as a workforce development professional.

Below are some Oregon Chapter members who are currently running for positions on the International Board:

Vice President

Amber Drake

Director-at-Large – 2 year term

Stephanie Stevens

Stephanie is also the IAWP District VII Director and the Membership Chair in the Oregon Chapter.

Director-at-Large – 1 year term

Steven Corwin

Steve is also the Oregon Chapter Immediate Past-President and is running for another term for Oregon Chapter President.

Add to those names, the names of Oregon Chapter members CURRENTLY serving in the International Board:

Grant Axtell, International President

Stephanie Stevens, Awards Chair, Stephanie is also the 2018-2019 year the District VII (7) Director

Amber Drake, 2018-2019 Bylaws and Resolution Chair and 2019 Educational Conference Program Chair

Steve Strain, 2019 International Conference Flash newsletter editor


The online voting process will be available shortly, and the results will be announced during the Workforce Development Conference this June in San Antonio, Texas.

Please vote and support your Oregon delegation at International.


International Conferencing

By Barbee Williams

Have you ever been to an IAWP International Conference? Have you heard Rumors? I remember what I had heard before I went to my first International Conference.

I would like to share what they really are like. A LOT OF WORK! After your flight, (or even the drive over when it was in Portland) you have mixed emotions. Fatigue, excitement, confusion, and the desire to get out and network as soon as possible.

You walk in and start seeing people you know from other states and even from here at home that you don't get to see often. Suddenly the fatigue is forgotten and catching up is your priority. We make friends and build relationships that last for years. These relationships are resources you will use and bounce ideas back and forth for many years to come.

The confusion? So many learning experiences are available that it is often hard to know which classes are the best ones. I heard about laws and changes, WIOA for example, for job seekers sometimes before I even heard the words here in Oregon. WIOA is landmark legislation designed to strengthen and improve our nation's public workforce system and help get Americans, including youth and those with significant barriers to employment, into high-quality jobs and careers and help employers hire and retain skilled workers. Maybe I am more “tuned in” at the conference. Once you have decided and finally marked what you are going to take, you can breathe a sigh of relief. It is time to look for somewhere new and exciting to eat a meal.

You need to go to the registration table and get all of the cool things they have for you. Your schedule, your tickets to special events, your tourist guide and maybe even a cup or two! This is your first official activity.

The opening ceremonies are highly energized from all of the excitement you have on that first day when you are fresh and open to soak in all that the conference can give. The presentation of the flags really brings home how international we are. As states and countries present their flag, you take pride in yours when it comes up.

This is where you learn about the organization and get to hear some of your first Key Note Speakers. In times past, each state sat together and let you know how strong they were by their cheers! Many activities divided into separate classes and it felt good to all be together at the beginning or ending of the educational day. What I did not realize was each day started so early and was so “jam packed” into training that I definitely needed to catch my breath before going to dinner of attending any of the many networking functions in the evenings.

This is an opportunity to grow personally, to learn more about your association, your job and the big picture in how legislation effects what we do and how we do it. You learn people skills, how to listen, how to communicate and how to include many different opinions and wide diversity and still see all of the people as “one”. All in accord, all working towards the same goals and most important, all belonging to this great organization. Take a step, plan ahead and go to one of the many international conferences. (PS, I throw a few extra days of vacation in and get to see places I might not of ever gone to, and not one place was a disappointment!)


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Survey finds 51 percent prefer digital access to government services over phone calls or personal visits to agency offices

2/13/19 Brookings

Fifty-one percent of Americans prefer to access public services through digital technologies or mobile apps, according to a national survey undertaken by researchers at the Brookings Institution....read more

Despite Economic Growth, Governors Worry About Skills Gap and Unemployment
2/13/19 Governing.com
Ten years since the end of the last recession, state leaders are generally feeling good about the economy. As the nation's governors gathered in Washington this weekend for the National Governors Association's winter meeting, they expressed confidence in America's fiscal climate -- at least as it stands right now....read more

Unemployed and living far away from jobs
2/22/19 Axios
Increasing numbers of experts say the concentration of wealth in big cities, along with the rise of automation, is putting low-wage jobs out of the physical reach of workers. Many of these unemployed people simply can't — or won't — go where the jobs are....read more

These jobs grew way faster than statisticians predicted
2/21/19 Quartz
Every two years, the US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) publishes its projections on the jobs they expect to grow or decline over the next decade. The point of the projections are to help workers and officials prepare for the future....read more

The gig economy is quietly undermining a century of worker protections
2/26/19 Quartz
No kid ever dreamed of growing up and driving for Uber or styling for Stitch Fix. In part, that’s because none of those companies existed when most of today’s adults were young. It’s also because, besides its much-touted “flexibility,” the gig economy isn’t much of a place to build a career....read more


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My Yummy Dandelion!

The evidence is clear: spring is here in the Willamette Valley of Oregon. We will still have an occasional hail storm which is Old Man Winter’s temper tantrum as Mother Nature is pushing him out the door. Birds are singing, bugs are crawling, and glorious dandelions are breaking through brown crust of the of the soil in lawns and fields.

Although generally considered a weed with millions of dollars are spent each year for chemicals to eliminate them, dandelions are a gift. If you look around at the plants and trees at this early part of the season, you will note that other than the dandelions, there are not yet many flowers blooming. Without blossoms, there is little food for creatures like bees. I have wondered if the Colony Collapse Disorder that threatens the existence of our bees may be due in part to the chemical control of dandelions in lawns and hence the elimination of this food source for the awakening hive.

The green leaves of the maturing dandelion plant are a great addition to salad (as long as the dandelions have not been exposed to chemicals). The taste is savory and a bit bitter. Eastern medicine principles assert that bitter tasting plants tend to be a tonic for the liver, and that is one of the medicinal uses of dandelions. Dandelions leaves are loaded with food value, but care should be taken to avoid the milky sap of the flower stem which can be an allergen for some people.

If you can find about one quart of clean dandelion flowers, wine can be made from them. Recipes for dandelion wine are readily available on the internet and the process does not require months of aging to develop flavor. I can think of no other wine that contains the nutrient value as that made from dandelions.

Being human involves being mindful to notice and appreciate the gifts that nature has provided. All spring flowers lift the spirit, but dandelions feed the body as well.


"The capacity to be puzzled is...the premise of all creation, be it in art or in science"

-Erich Fromm-


Making a Difference, One Service at a Time

Barbee A. Williams


Supporting Veterans

We hear about all of the wonderful services provided for our veterans when they come home, and we know there are many. The sad facts are that we still need to help our veterans secure a home, a job and other support needed by many. These veterans are the men and women we sent to protect our rights, our freedom and our lives. Think about that! These men and women risk their lives for you and for me. What else can we do?

Easterseals and WorkSource had an idea. On the Easterseals website, www.easterseals.com/Veterans, their commitment was very clear, “The needs of veterans and military families are evolving, not disappearing. That is why Easterseals specializes in identifying the needs of veterans and military families, particularly with employment, job training and support like family respite opportunities. We work to make solutions easily accessible in communities.”

The Easterseals Oregon Homeless Veterans Reintegration Program stepped up in partnership with WorkSource Oregon and presented a Veterans Employment Service Luncheon and Workshop Series at the Embassy Suites in Tigard, OR at Washington Square on March 19th, 2019. This event focused on 24 veterans engaged with Easterseals to remove barriers and receive resources and services.

The Easterseals Oregon Program Manager, Troy Reddick, had a great list of employers at the event to help with, and network with, these 24 veterans. The list included Madden Industrial, Enterprise, Trimet, DHS, Portland Parks & Rec, Danner, SP Plus, Jubitz, and Motus Staffing.

The WorkSource Oregon Management Team along with the Regional Business Service teams for all industries were there to assist the veterans in learning what is important to help them reach their employment goals. Aaron Mowrer presented information on resumes and interviewing and led discussions between the veterans and the audience on their experiences. A favorite part of the discussion was going from military job descriptions to civilian work descriptions on resumes. Aaron suggested using ONet. It is a great tool! https://www.onetonline.org/.

In attendance at the Workshop and the Luncheon were Portland METRO area DVOPS. The DVOPs are an integral piece of the HVRP grant in identifying and recommending potential Veteran clients that have barriers to employment that would benefit from the additional services that are mandated in the grant.

Congresswoman Suzanne Bonamici discussed her passion to help the veterans and mentioned the $1.5M in federal funding over three years Easterseals Oregon will receive to provide employment services for homeless veterans in Multnomah, Washington, and Clackamas counties. The funding will allow Easterseals Oregon to provide Washington and Clackamas counties with the same services that were offered in Multnomah County. The grant that Rep Bonamici’s is sponsoring is the PARTNERS grant. The purpose of the act is to promote registered apprenticeships and other work-based learning programs for small and medium-sized businesses within in-demand industry sectors, through the establishment and support of industry or sector partnerships.

Grace Neal from Ron Wyden’s office read a letter from Ron Wyden with his Commitment of Support in providing services to our veterans. He could not be there, but it was important to him to send someone with share his support. Sen Wyden is sponsoring the ELEVATE Act. The ELEVATE Act (Economic Ladders to End Volatility and Advance Training to Employment) would incentivize public and private employers to hire and retain people facing barriers to employment, including the long-term unemployed, people with prior criminal records, dislocated workers and homeless individuals. To promote worker mobility and entrepreneurship, the ELEVATE Act would also create federal self-employment and relocation assistance programs for qualified workers to help them afford the cost of moving and starting their own businesses.

To round off the supportive event, Tonja M. Pardo, Director U.S.D.O.L. – VETS, talked about the Hire Vets Medallion Program. The Honoring Investments in Recruiting and Employing American Military Veterans Act of 2017 (HIRE Vets Act), signed by President Trump on May 5, 2017, required the Secretary of Labor to establish a program, by rule, that recognizes employer efforts to recruit, employ, and retain veterans. Employer-applicants meeting criteria established in the rule will receive a “HIRE Vets Medallion Award.”

Gus Bedwell, Veterans Housing Integrator, works on projects, initiatives, and legislation that deal with the homelessness of our veterans. Over the past 18 years, he has worked across five agencies advocating for Veterans and their family in the area of employment, education, VA claims, and cultural awareness. He shared some of the new projects and goals that are coming soon. One goal is to house 500 veterans during the Operation Welcome Home. The Operation Welcome Home campaign is funded by Measure 96 Veterans Lottery funds.

Housing Assistance: https://www.portland.va.gov/locations/crrc.asp. For housing assistance, veterans can reach out to DVOPs, County Veteran Service Officers. Each county also has housing assistance. There are a number of charitable organizations like the Salvation Army that have shelters/emergency type housing available for the veteran community.

Kristen Rantz, Easterseals Oregon CFO/COO, closed the event and shared that we are all contributing to the welfare and success of the veterans and left us with a new sense of partnership with our veterans.

The work to accomplish such a successful event takes many people, too many to list here, but the vision of Catherine Todd and Troy Reddick and Tracy Calderon showed what a little passion can do to help provide extra services for the veterans. A special thank you to Rosemarie Harding, Regional Veteran Employment Representative for helping with the legislative information.

The event moved smoothly, gave important information, provided a platform for employers and veterans to connect, and most of all, brought us all into a room with a single goal, to help provide services for the veterans, one service at a time.


Do you like the new Oregonizer format?

We are hoping that you can take a few minutes to provide us with feedback on the new newsletter format. Your comments are greatly appreciated!

2018/2019 Oregon IAWP Board

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Requires: An interest to contribute. Knowledge of English, spelling, grammar and punctuation, journalistic writing and editing procedures and skill in the use of Microsoft Word preferred.

Duties: Write articles and features based on research and inter-views; conceive ideas for content; arrange for content from other sources; and select and edit photos and artwork to benefit the educational and professional interests of Oregon Chapter IAWP members.

Pay: The gratitude and admiration of your fellow Oregon Chapter IAWP members and the joy of seeing your name in print.

How to Apply: Submit articles or express interest by e-mail to Steve Strain at reedman18@gmail.com

The Oregonizer


Editor-in-Chief - Steve Strain, steven.d.strain@oregon.gov

Co-Editor - Barbee Williams, barbee.a.williams@oregon.gov