Woodlawn Neighborhood Association General Meeting Minutes 

(draft until approved at next meeting)

April 7th 2021, Online only at Zoom 

This is your neighborhood. This is our neighborhood. 

Together, we have the power to make it a beautiful place to live for everyone.

7:00 – 7:10 Welcome and Introductions-Meeting is recorded

Please introduce yourself in chats: Name, pronouns
Board members present: Melody Randolph, Maija Spencer, Beth Heins, Dennis Kennedy, Anjala Ehelebe, Shirley Minor, Thelma Diggs, Nancy Flynn, new member Chida Chaemchaeng; not present – Keith Baich


7:10 – 7:15 Approve March meeting notes: Beth move, Dennis second, all in favor
Approve April agenda : Anjala move, Thelma second, all in favor

7:15 – 8:00 General Business

  1. Guest Speaker-Kira Smith, Bureau of Environmental Services: encouraging communities to invest in projects to address stormwater/runoff issues. The program email address is 2theriver@portland.gov, her work number is 503.823.8209 Programs they offer are:
    1. Native plant certification
    2. Small grant program: they have two mini-grant programs and a larger one
      1. $500 for community organizations, faith groups
      2. $100 in increments of $50 for individuals funding rain gardens, nature patches in their yard, adapting the plantings in the parking strip to add hative plants.
      3. Also have grants of up to $20,000 to adapt larger patches in neighborhoods 
        1. Community art projects related to stormwater health
        2. Depaving projects

Question: do they partner with community gardens for native planting projects? Answer: they don’t have a formal program but would certainly review applications and have worked with community gardens in the past. 

Question: have you been in touch with a person at the nearby condo community? There is a person there trying to replace ivy with native plants, seems like a good project. Answer: she’d be interested in connecting with that person. 

Question: are those grants available to renters? Answer: all programs are open to renters. They may ask the renters to confirm they have permission from the property owner.

Question: if a person wants to get a grant to plant in their parking strip, what do they need to do? Answer: contact Kira at the email above or at kira.smith@portland.gov, and she’ll then send a one-page application for the person to fill out. If they’re approved she’ll send a gift certificate to a specific nursery. 

Question: what about people who don’t have land but have a patio, is there a program for potted plants/container gardens? Answer: possibly not, but get in touch with her to confirm – part of the program is meant to address runoff and container gardens may not be a fit. 

Offer: Anjala has oregon grape plants to give away – get in touch with her. 

Suggestion: the East Multnomah Soil and Water Conservation District (EMSWCD) has a group that does a native plant swap. 

  1. Follow up from previous guest speakers & topics:
    1. Letter of Recommendation for Keith Johns, owner of Black Rose Market
      1. Keith is applying for a second business and needs a letter of recommendation. Melody makes a motion that she write a letter of recommendation for the board to send on his behalf; Thelma seconds; all in favor/none opposed.

    2. Dontae Riley of STARS Mentoring considering extending services in Woodlawn
      1. One community member was in touch with Dontae to see about finding or other ways to bring some of his services to Woodlawn; she isn’t at tonight’s meeting so we’ll update on the Woodlawn Neighborhood Association facebook page, also on the Woodlawn Neighborhood Association Discussion Group, also on facebook

    3. Gun Violence Conversation, meeting held on March 22nd-Alisa Welch
      1. Monday, April 19, 2021 @ 6PM Woodlawn Gun Violence Conversation – https://us02web.zoom.us/j/87536225524 , Meeting ID: 875 3622 5524 
      2. About 30 people joined the March 22nd meeting, which resulted in a short list of action items people could do. 
      3. One was to get in touch with some possibly absentee homeowners for some very specific buildings that are burned out/seem to be attracting gun violence. 
      4. Another house on Morgan has an owner who just needs a little help managing the space, so neighbors got in touch to offer help and that seemed to be a good experience for everyone involved 
      5. Next meeting is Monday April 19th at 6pm – open for ideas, tangible action items

Related Question: Portland Parks has a ranger program and a news article said they’d be getting more funding to increase staff and offer a 24×7 patrol focused on specific parks – would that include Woodlawn Park? Answer: To be determined, they’d likely have a regular route and would not be in one place at any amount of time. They would be a non-armed patrol but they can issue park exclusions for park rule violations and are trained to de-escalate some situations.

  1. Upcoming Events 
    1. Woodlawn Wildcats Spring Plant Sale
      1. Order now through April 15th for May 7th pick-up. The “shop now” button doesn’t seem to work but you can add items to your basket and check out. The pickup date might be different than the May 7th advertised.
      2. https://woodlawn-806881.square.site/plant-sale
    2. April 24th-Meals on Wheels Stride for Seniors www.strideforseniors.org

Information from Nancy: anyone who wants to join the Woodlawn team should go to the webpage and join the Northeast Neighborhood Heroes Team. Teams will meet at the Meals on Wheels office where there will be breakfast, and then walkers will be given choices of routes in the neighborhoods nearby. 

In years past the WNA has given a donation. Nancy moves that the WNA donate $300; Thelma seconds, several in favor, one opposed – Dennis opposes for the following reason: we have no money coming in at this time. Other members comment that at this time especially it’s important to support food services. Dennis is correct that we need to keep our income in mind and not spend too much, but it’s also important to support this organization. Reminder to everyone that individuals can donate as well! No one changes their vote, motion carries with the objection noted. 

Related question: how does the Neighborhood Association make money/receive donations? 

8:00 – 8:20 Board Business

  1. Treasurer’s Report-Dennis Kennedy (need to add card for Google Drive)
    1. Same amount as last month, $7600. No income. 
    2. We have two emails on the Google account so there will be some recurring charge. Melody and Dennis will work out the details. 
  2. Land Use and Transportation-Anjala Ehelebe
    1. Submitted a complaint about the vacant buildings down near NE 10th & Stafford, the city has sent people out
    2. Contacted the city to ask: What can be done to slow traffic at NE 8th & Holland, which is a large asymmetrical intersection? 
      1. Answer came back suggesting using a traffic calming ground painting, or concrete planters in the middle, or repainting the art on the ground. 
      2. Nothing more has come back from another comment Anjala submitted about that dangerous intersection. 
      3. Anyone interested in coordinating street murals in the neighborhood? 
    3. No notices requiring action of any kind. 
    4. NECN (Northeast Coalition of Neighborhoods) hasn’t had their land use group meet lately so no news there. 
  3. Farmer’s Market-Keith Baich-Fundraiser update, mailers – not present/no update; we know the market plans to run June through October. 
  4. NECN (Northeast Coalition of Neighborhoods) -Dennis Kennedy – no update
  5. NET-Erin Cooper – not present/no update


Conversation: community member looking for links to donate/learn about local groups supporting each other: 


Adding a new member to the board: Chida Chaemchaeng

About the board: we have our own non-profit status and that means we have a board. We have a few official roles – chair, vice-chair, secretary, treasurer; then we have other formal roles such as the land use chair, and the rest are at-large seats, up to a total of 12 board members. As a board we can endorse issues and take stances on issues, but we may not endorse political candidates. Anyone who lives, works, worships in Woodlawn is a member of the Neighborhood Association. 

Board elections are in October but we can have them at any time to run through the end of September. Maija moves to add Chida as an at-large member of the board; Dennis seconds. Chida introduces herself: she’s been in Woodlawn for 3+ years and is in a family that has lived in Woodlawn longer than that. She wants to contribute time and energy to the Neighborhood Association. Voting on her addition: all in favor. 

8:20 – 8:30 Final thoughts, announcements, other upcoming events

8:30 Meeting adjourns

Thank you for coming! Hope to see you Wed, May 5th at 7pm for our next Meeting!