• 23 Mar 2021 1:29 PM | Darren Lloyd (Administrator)

    Dear Providence Park,

    Well, this is awkward. We miss you. We can’t wait to fill you to the rafters, make the roof reverberate with the noise of drums and trumpets, and stir up billowing smoke bombs with frantically waving flags. There is no better place on Earth than Providence Park on match day.

    The Riveters celebrate a Thorns goal

    This is different. This will be different. There will be no flags, no trumpets, no fervent encouragement from capos extolling the North End to drag our beloved teams across the line to victory. This is a time where the dedicated volunteers that make each match day happen have to make decisions about their comfort level. Decisions based on when vaccinations are available to them. Decisions based on the needs of themselves and their families. Decisions that will change the way the North End looks, feels, and sounds.

    An empty North End except for Gisele

    It will be the same, too. It will be the same because at the end of the day, all those things we do we do for the men and women representing the Rose City. Our City. Soccer City, USA. The passion, love, and support for our players is unwavering and while it might seem a little different in the stands as we support from distance, know that we sing wherever we go — we sing for you, whether we’re inside Providence Park or not.

    The Timbers Army celebrates a Valeri goal

    We look forward to the day where we can all be united, 25,000 strong, in one voice. We’re still figuring it all out and intentionally not rushing things. 

    This year will be weird. Embrace it. This is Portland, after all.

    Always,

    The Timbers Army & The Rose City Riveters

    To our supporters: If you’d like to help us figure it out, reach out. If you have more questions, start here. We’ll be adding more information as the season moves along and we know more.

  • 10 Mar 2021 9:15 PM | Jennifer Ingraham (Administrator)

    We continue to provide updates to broader membership on the progress we are making across the five areas of focus we have committed to improving this year. As a board we are taking intentional steps to:

    • Improve accessibility.

    • Hear from members.

    • Communicate more.

    • Increase accountability.

    • Evaluate the organization’s structure and activities.  

    This week, we’d like to focus on Increase accountability, specifically looking at hiring a DEI consultant and creating a 107IST code of conduct.

    What we’ve accomplished

    DEI consultant: This effort, with advisement from the BIPOC group, has been an ongoing effort to shortlist and request bids for engagement from organizations and individual consultants in the PNW region. With the events taking place last year on both a national stage and also within our organization, we are prioritizing this effort to make sure we continue to foster an inclusive, equitable organization and culture. 

    • Next steps: We have held conversations with multiple individuals, articulating our needs and scope of efforts, and plan to make a decision in the coming weeks.

    Code of conduct: Related to creating an inclusive organization is the establishment of a Code of Conduct. This effort was mentioned during our February monthly board meeting and a breakout session during our March 6 AGM. While we have an away travel code of conduct that outlines expectations for members attending away matches, a 107IST code of conduct would plainly state the norms and expectations in alignment with our ethos and the accountability to uphold these. We heard rich feedback and recommendations during the AGM session as well as those of you who reached out via email. 

    • Next steps: We are taking the feedback received over the last few weeks and drafting an initial code of conduct to socialize with membership before broadly adopting.  


    To read previous initiative updates click here.
  • 24 Feb 2021 9:39 PM | Jennifer Ingraham (Administrator)

    As we have discussed in several past posts, the board has committed to improvement in five areas of focus this year. We have promised to:

    • Improve accessibility.
    • Hear from members.
    • Communicate more.
    • Increase accountability.
    • Evaluate the organization’s structure and activities.

    We’d like to share some of the steps we’ve taken in these areas with our members and with the general public.

    This week, we’d like to focus on Hear from members.

    This Saturday, March 6, is the 107IST annual general meeting for members. We wanted to take this opportunity to highlight what the AGM is, why we have them, and why you should join us.

    What is an AGM?

    The annual general meeting, or AGM, is pretty much what we make it. As stated in our bylaws, the 107 Independent Supporters Trust holds an annual meeting in the offseason of the Portland Timbers and the Portland Thorns. It is generally a place for members to hear reports about the work of the organization over the past year, discuss future plans, and for you to give us input.

    What can we expect?

    In the past, board members have reported out activities in various areas of work, from game day operations to community outreach to away days and more. Because 2020 was a year like no other for all of us, some of the activities we typically talk about clearly will have different sorts of reports. (What do you say about game day operations during a pandemic, for instance?)

    On the other hand, because this is a remote event, members who may have not otherwise been able attend before now have the opportunity, which is pretty exciting.

    We’ll still be reporting to the general membership about where we have been, where we are, and where we are going. You can expect time to hear from board members and committee leads, and you can also expect time to talk to and listen to fellow 107IST members.

    What will we talk about?

    To some extent, that’s up to you! While the board has some ideas, we’d really like to hear from you! Let us know what you’d like to talk about at the AGM by contacting Kristen Gehrke. Be sure to sign up to attend so you get the link in your inbox before the meeting. We’re looking forward to seeing all of you!

  • 10 Feb 2021 8:54 PM | Jennifer Ingraham (Administrator)

    As we have discussed in several past posts, the board has committed to improvement in five areas of focus this year. We have promised to:

    • Improve accessibility.
    • Hear from members.
    • Communicate more.
    • Increase accountability.
    • Evaluate the organization’s structure and activities.

    We’d like to share some of the steps we’ve taken in these areas with our members and with the general public.

    This week, we’re going to look further at our next steps to Evaluate the organization’s structure and activities, this time looking at our recent strategic planning sessions.

    Every year, as the board is re-formed following elections, the 107IST board of directors meets for strategic planning. This year, instead of meeting for several hours on a weekend day, the board held three separate sessions over the course of three weekends, to renew and review our mission and values, and to evaluate the organization’s structure and activities.

    What we’ve accomplished

    Roles and responsibilities defined: Over the years, the board has had a rotating set of executive officers, not always composed of the same offices and without clear guidelines for the roles and responsibilities for officers. In one of the strategic planning sessions, the board worked together to clearly define roles for president, vice president, secretary, and treasurer, and to spell out these responsibilities in the board handbook, so future board members will not have to start from scratch or rely on institutional memory when determining how best to fulfill these responsibilities.

    Committee structures refined and documented: Over the past year, the board has worked to more clearly define the structures of committees, as well as the relationships among them. At another of the strategic planning sessions, the board reviewed the work from the past year around committee roles, responsibilities, and relationships, and worked together to refine and document these new structures.

    Next steps

    During strategic planning, the board discussed areas of focus for the organization for the short term, medium term, and long term. We will be evaluating these with respect to their relationship to ongoing initiatives from last year, and determining which of these fits under existing initiatives and which rise to the level of a new initiative for the coming year. We’ll share this work in coming blogs, as well as at the upcoming annual general meeting.

  • 20 Jan 2021 9:56 PM | Jennifer Ingraham (Administrator)

    As we have discussed in several past posts, the board has committed to improvement in five areas of focus this year. We have promised to:

    • Improve accessibility.
    • Hear from members.
    • Communicate more.
    • Increase accountability.
    • Evaluate the organization’s structure and activities.

    We’d like to share some of the steps we’ve taken in these areas with our members and with the general public.

    This week, we’re going to look further at our successes and our next steps to Evaluate the organization’s structure and activities, this time looking at the structure of our online presence.

    What we’ve accomplished

    As we have grown and evolved as an organization, with two supporter groups for two local teams, it is critical that we structure our online presence to reflect the relationships among the Independent Supporters Trust and our two supporter groups: the Timbers Army and the Rose City Riveters.

    Domain name change: As we noted earlier this week, the place where 107IST lives online is no longer timbersarmy.org; it is now 107ist.org. Content on our website that is specific to the Timbers Army is now found under 107ist.org/timbersarmy; content on our website that is specific to the nonprofit organization is found under 107ist.org. When you sign up for events with 107IST, the event addresses will also have 107ist.org links.

    Everyday communications: In alignment with the work on the website, we have also spent the last several months reviewing how we use our social media and blogs. We realized the need to communicate similar messages, while also maintaining a distinct voice and presence for each branch. Our communications team has broadened its scope and increased its focus, giving each branch a dedicated group within the comms team, while also ensuring that each branch communicates within the committee regularly. This ensures messaging from each group maintains its unique identity, while also keeping the broader message consistent across groups and platforms.

    Next steps

    Next steps include a migration of Rose City Riveters content so that ultimately it “lives” online under 107ist.org in the same way that Timbers Army content does, as well as continuing to build out content specific to each branch on the organization’s website.

  • 18 Jan 2021 11:30 AM | Darren Lloyd (Administrator)

    As we shared in November, one of our long-term goals has been to revamp our website to equally reflect 107IST and our supporters groups, growing beyond 107IST being synonymous with only “Timbers Army.” We’re excited to announce that as the most recent step of our ongoing website renovation, we’ve made 107ist.org our primary domain, with timbersarmy.org redirecting to 107ist.org/timbersarmy. This change allows us to have separate sections with Timbers Army content and 107IST content.

    Next steps in this ongoing project include a migration of Rose City Riveters content and a completely revised travel and away day section — for when we can travel again, that is. Thanks to our talented team of volunteers who made these changes possible!

    If something looks wrong or links are broken, please let us know!


  • 06 Jan 2021 1:38 PM | Stephan Lewis (Administrator)

    This week, the 107IST Community Outreach Committee is highlighting Brown Hope as a recipient of the Fall round of micro-grants. While one of their programs, the Black Resilience Fund, was awarded funds during our Spring micro-grant distribution with funds meant to support organizations doing work with those effected by the pandemic, we’d like to celebrate/acknowledge their broader work. While this is one of the newer organizations in our community, it is worth noting that their staff are far from newcomers with many having moved over from other highly effective organizations to create an amazing capacity. We enjoy a stronger relationship with Brown Hope than some of the other recipients as we’ve spent time with their leadership in both formal and informal spaces and are knowledgeable about who we are and what we do.

    Brown Hope is a culturally specific non-profit organization that develops Black, Brown, and Indigenous leaders to create powerful strategies that build community resilience and inspire transformational change. Guided by their 12 Principles of Hope, they organize four programs which help to advance our goals to transfer power and capital to Black, Brown, and Indigenous Oregonians: Blackstreet Bakery, Power Hour, Black Resilience Fund, and Equity & Beyond. As a nonprofit incubator, their programs evolve to meet critical needs in the community.

    Oregon’s culture of racism began during statehood and fueled exclusionary policies, such as redlining, that forced Black Portlanders into neighborhoods that lacked basic services, including financial institutions and supermarkets. Despite these discriminatory practices, a self-supporting Black community eventually flourished; culturally specific schools, churches, small businesses, and community centers provided resources that Black Portlanders could not access elsewhere. The absence of City investment contributed to many challenges of poverty and crime, which persisted until the 1970’s, when decades of urban renewal and gentrification began. Tens of thousands of Black residents in North and Northeast Portland were forced to relocate away from the City core and into areas with fewer equitable opportunities, a lack of city investment, and no cohesive community as they had once developed and benefited from.

    The consequences of systemic racism and displacement have resulted in devastating disparities within Portland’s Black communities. In Multnomah County, 35% of Black families live below the poverty line and the Black community experiences an unemployment rate more than twice that of their white neighbors. These staggering poverty levels have an undue impact on educational, health, and social outcomes.

    Brown Hope’s mission is centered around trauma-informed activism for Black, Brown, and Indigenous Oregonians by building radically inclusive spaces for healing, community building, and leadership. Historical trauma is the cumulative emotional and psychological wounding of an individual or community, caused by a traumatic event and is passed on to the next generation. Black, Brown, and Indigenous communities have survived several psychological, sociological, and material shockwaves of historical trauma, which contribute to perpetuated systemic inequities. Sue Coyle’s essay in Social Work Today entitled, “Intergenerational Trauma-Legacies of Loss, describes how treatment for historical trauma is similar to that of any trauma-informed practice, including the need for clinical therapy, further education, and community empowerment.

    At Brown Hope, they take this treatment one step further, by centering the power of peer-based healing and leadership activities to recognize, support, and uplift in a manner that is accessible to as many Black, Brown, and Indigenous people as possible. Brown Hope is committed to reversing, not just ending, systemic racism in order to achieve an empowering community-centered future where we all can thrive.

    With the 107IST's support, Brown Hope is investing in the healing and resilience of 6,000 Portlanders who are surviving the ongoing shockwaves of racism and historical trauma. Their initiatives respond to urgent community needs, such as: Black Resilience Fund, which has provided immediate financial relief to 4,000 neighbors, Power Hour, which has alleviated isolation and socioeconomic disparities for 600 community members, and Blackstreet Bakery, which has sustained livable wages for 5 Black Portlanders. Brown Hope organizes for lasting impact by advocating for policies that promote community resilience and inspire transformative change.

    Much of the work done by Brown Hope is thanks to their many volunteers who deliver food boxes and use their skills to help develop/implement strategies. They are also hiring into some key positions. If this is something you’d like to help with or would like to learn more about, check out their site at brownhope.org.

  • 30 Dec 2020 5:55 PM | Jennifer Ingraham (Administrator)

    Our next recipient of the 2020 Black Lives Matter microgrants is North Portland’s Self Enhancement, Inc. SEI is a comprehensive, one-stop resource for youth and families, primarily African Americans and others living in poverty or seeking culturally responsive services. It is also one of the city’s leading multi-service organizations, providing thousands of youth, families, and adults with a wide array of education and social services on an annual basis. SEI’s strength is in its ability to meet the complex needs of the children and families it serves, including helping people to overcome cultural, educational and economic barriers.

    SEI was originally founded in 1981 as an upstart basketball camp to provide support and structure for kids in the neighborhood. The group quickly grew into an organization and began branching out into other areas of need, partnering up with local schools and organizations to embed and amplify their support inside the very communities that needed them. SEI is now nationally recognized for their innovative programming and partnership models.

    The money from the Black Lives Matter micro-grant will go toward support of these SEI focus areas:

    • High school education support, graduation rates and a continuum of service from 6th-12th grade

    • College scholarship support

    • Culturally & population-specific “wrap around” support for families

    • Food, energy and housing assistance for families

    • Community-building and entertainment for youth

    • Free COVID 19 testing

    If you are interested in getting involved and volunteering with SEI, you can find more information here.

    For more information about SEI and its mission, please visit their website at https://www.selfenhancement.org.

  • 30 Dec 2020 5:51 PM | Jennifer Ingraham (Administrator)

    As we have discussed in several past posts, the board has committed to improvement in five areas of focus this year. We have promised to:

    • Improve accessibility.
    • Hear from members.
    • Communicate more.
    • Increase accountability.
    • Evaluate the organization’s structure and activities.

    We’d like to share some of the steps we’ve taken in these areas with our members and with the general public.

    This week, we’re going to look further at our successes and our next steps to Evaluate the organization’s structure and activities, in particular the documentation and board member onboarding.

    What we’ve accomplished

    Board handbook: In the early days of the organization, day-to-day information was passed on to new board members in an ad hoc fashion. While individual files and documents have been stored in shared locations, there was no central location for all the essential, day-to-day board information (such as contact information, passwords, policies and processes, and other basic board member documentation). We’ve now created a working copy of a new board handbook to put all this knowledge in a single, central location, which contains enough necessary information for new and existing board members to have a more successful start.

    Documentation: While individuals and groups have passed on knowledge and information to those who come after them in committees and in board work, in the past this sharing of knowledge has been dependent on individuals’ will and ability to pass it forward. Similar to the board handbook, we have systematically begun to document best practices, policies, and other documents to help keep “institutional knowledge” more available for future board members and others who serve on 107IST committees.

    Onboarding of new board members: In the past, there has been no formal “onboarding” process for new board members. We have developed a checklist for onboarding new board members to ensure all the correct accesses are granted on day one, setting up meetings with the president to answer questions during the first few weeks, sharing the handbook, and communicating ahead of time what is coming up and what to expect further down the road.

    Next steps

    We will continue to add to both the handbook and the documentation of organizational best practices this year, as well as refine the onboarding process for future board members.

  • 16 Dec 2020 11:09 PM | Jennifer Ingraham (Administrator)

    As we have discussed in past posts, the board has committed to improvement in five areas of focus this year. We have promised to:

    • Improve accessibility.
    • Hear from members.
    • Communicate more.
    • Increase accountability.
    • Evaluate the organization’s structure and activities.

    We’d like to share some of the steps we’ve taken in these areas with our members and with the general public.

    This week, we’ll look at our successes and our next steps to Evaluate the organization’s structure and activities, in particular the changing of 107IST board structure and member representation.

    What we’ve accomplished:

    Created pathways for participation and representation: We have evaluated board structures and processes to create more pathways for participation and representation of 107IST members who identify as BIPOC, as well as formalizing processes to ensure pathways for board representation from both Timbers Army and Riveters 107IST members.

    In the past, the eleven 107IST board members have either been elected by voting members, or — in some cases — appointed by the board to complete the term of a board seat that has been vacated early. Because we recognize the structural barriers to participation inherent in this system, we’ve changed the way some board seats are filled.

    To create more pathways for participation and representation, the board now consists of seven elected members serving three-year terms, and (up to) four additional appointed members serving one-year terms: one appointed from the Timbers Army Steering Committee, one appointed from the Riveters Steering Committee, and two appointed from the 107IST BIPOC Committee. (Read more about the changes to election and appointment processes here and see who next year’s elected and appointed board members are here.)

    The following committees forward their recommended candidates to the board for one-year appointments:

    (Note: If a committee does not have a recommended candidate for a seat, that seat will remain open for the following calendar year.)

    Timbers Army Steering Committee (one board candidate): Along with many volunteers, the Timbers Army Steering Committee leads tifo, game day operations (capos, drums and trumpets, and flag crew), merchandise (No Pity Originals), and communications for the Timbers Army. It works closely with other committees under the 107IST umbrella. The Timbers Army Steering Committee comprises members of core aspects of the gameday experience — capos, drums and trumpets (DnT), flag crew, tifo crew, and merch (NPO) — with board resources and support from key committees. This year’s board candidate is Darren Lloyd, who will be serving on the 107IST board in the 2021 calendar year.

    Riveters Steering Committee (one board candidate): Along with many volunteers, the Riveters Steering Committee leads tifo, game day operations, travel, merch, communications, etc. for the Rose City Riveters (Supporters Group for the Portland Thorns). The Riveters Steering Committee did not forward a candidate for board consideration for the 2021 calendar year.

    107IST BIPOC Committee: (two board candidates): The BIPOC committee is made up of individuals who identify as Black, Indigenous and People of Color (BIPOC). Members of the 107IST BIPOC committee are volunteering their time and knowledge in order to ensure the 107IST is a more inclusive organization where all members’ voices are heard and respected. This year’s board candidates are Dominique Whittaker and Lindy Lacson, who will be serving on the 107IST board in the 2021 calendar year.

    Next steps: We are continuing to identify the means to creating pathways to leadership for more of our membership, both through the above-named committees and through work in other 107IST committees.


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