Say Hey! Honorees Receive a Warm Welcome in Hillsboro

For the very first time, we had the opportunity to take our signature Say Hey! event west of Portland to the City of Hillsboro! 500 attendees came out to network, connect with professionals of color, and welcome this quarter’s forty new Honorees. From entrepreneurship to media and public relations, these newcomers bring an incredible range of skills and interests to our region. Relocating to a predominantly white region without an established community or network can be a challenging experience, so we encourage you all to connect with the Honorees if you missed the opportunity.

February Honoree, Frankline Muthomi, who recently joined Portland State University as Assistant Professor of Public Administration shared a few words about his experience,"What is the joy of finding an inclusive community of diverse races, backgrounds, and professions? To me, the joy starts and ends with the art of inclusion. I don’t have enough words to describe that joy, but I can point out where I found mine, at the Say Hey event with Partners in Diversity. My experience was way beyond expectations. I experienced a warm welcome from everyone and a friendly atmosphere where people are open to building meaningful connections.” We aim to bring authenticity to every interaction that takes place at our events and loved hearing this was the experience of one of our recent Honorees.

In addition to welcoming new professionals of color, this Say Hey! was particularly special because we were joined by several of the organization’s original founders who presented Partners in Diversity’s Executive Director, Mari Watanabe, with an official proclamation to celebrate the years she has dedicated to expanding the organization. Mari has led Partners in Diversity for 11 years and will retire later this year.

Building and supporting a diverse workforce with events like Say Hey! is at the core of our work and we are grateful to be able to continue that work with the generous support from our event sponsors Intel and the City of Hillsboro. We’d also like to thank the volunteers who helped us get people registered and through the door, and the incredible emcees, Iván Hernández and Jasmine Tolbert. Check out a photo recap of the event here.

Are you a professional of color who moved to Oregon or southwest Washington in the last 18 months? Join us an Honoree at our next Say Hey! on May 4. Complete the online form by April 4.
If you missed this quarter’s gathering we hope you’ll join us on May 4th at the Multnomah Athletic Club in Portland for our spring Say Hey!. Keep an eye out for a registration link.

February 2023 Honorees