Innovation, inclusion highlights of Diversity Summit 2015

April 7, 2015

PORTLAND, Ore. — More than 1,000 people from around the region are learning today how to support the development of a more diverse and innovative organization at Diversity Summit 2015, presented by Portland General Electric (PGE). Attendees will hear from diversity experts on topics such as hiring and retaining engaged employees, leveraging generational diversity, creating an inclusive environment for people with disabilities, and more.

PGE is also announcing that it will make an $8,000 contribution to the Oregon Association of Minority Entrepreneurs (OAME) Mentorship Program to help connect existing established businesses and public agencies with minority-owned businesses (mentees) to help them grow and succeed. PGE also has committed to being a mentor and is inviting other businesses and public agencies to join the mentorship program as either funders or mentors.

“Diversity is a core value at PGE,” said Jim Piro, PGE president and CEO. “Fostering a diverse and inclusive workforce is critical to our business as we strive to innovate and better serve our customers and community. Those here today will learn from experts in the field about the power of a diverse and inclusive workforce and its positive impact on building a strong and successful organization.”

Building a diverse workforce

Morning keynote speaker Frans Johansson, founder and CEO of The Medici Group and best-selling author of “The Medici Effect” and “The Click Moment,” will speak about how diversity promotes the intersection of innovative solutions and ideas for sustainability and success in the workplace. Luncheon keynote speaker Bruce Tulgan, founder of Rainmaker Thinking and expert on leadership and management, will present on generational and cultural differences in the workplace and leadership strategies for overcoming workplace challenges.

Diversity Summit 2015 features more than 10 concurrent morning and afternoon breakout sessions focused on ideas and strategies cultivating a sustainable diverse workforce. Examples of breakout sessions include: Creating an Inclusive Environment and Strategy for Retention & Talent Management; Everyday Bias; and Leading Diversity and Inclusion Initiatives in Our Organization.

OAME Mentorship Program

The OAME Mentorship Program creates a relationship between minority-owned businesses (mentees) and volunteer businesses (mentors) who will provide legal, accounting and/or technical acumen and guidance to help mentees succeed. Together, the mentor and mentee will develop a plan that will establish goals for the mentoring relationship and meet monthly for a predetermined period of time (usually one to two years). OAME will oversee and administer the program, as well as encourage other private-sector companies and public-sector organizations to participate and act as partners.

Sam Brooks, founder and chair of OAME, will also be presented with the PGE Diversity Summit Leadership Award for his contributions in promoting and developing minority entrepreneurship and economic development in the state of Oregon.

“I’m honored to receive the Diversity Leadership Award from PGE and to work with them on the OAME Mentorship Program. As the founder and chair of OAME, I’ve had a wonderful journey over the past 28 years in working to help under-represented businesses in Oregon to succeed. Experience has proven that when our businesses do well, our communities thrive, and we look forward to working with other established businesses like PGE and government organizations to act as sponsors and mentors.”

Continuing education credits for members of the Oregon and Washington state bar associations as well as the HR Certification Institute are available to participants at today’s summit.

Diversity Summit 2015 is sponsored by: Wells Fargo, Mercer, KGW, The Oregonian, Portland Business Journal, ACME Business Consulting, Bonneville Power Administration, Cambia Health Solutions, Fred Meyer, KeyBank, NW Natural, Port of Portland, Ryan LLC, Towers Watson, U.S. Bank, Bank of America, FamilyCare Health, J.P. Morgan, Knowledge Universe, Legacy Health, Oregon Health & Science University, Providence Health & Services, and Stoel Rives LLP.

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About Portland General Electric Company
Portland General Electric (NYSE: POR) is a fully integrated energy company based in Portland, Oregon, serving approximately 887,000 customers in 51 cities. For more than 130 years, PGE has been delivering safe, affordable and reliable energy to Oregonians. Together with its customers, PGE has the No. 1 voluntary renewable energy program in the U.S. With approximately 3,000 employees across the state, PGE is committed to helping its customers and the communities it serves build a clean energy future. For more information, visit

Source: Portland General Electric Company

For more information contact: Mark Mohammadpour, PGE, 503-464-8714,