Minutes from November 2023 WNA General Meeting


Minutes from November 2023 WNA General Meeting

Woodlawn Neighborhood Association General Meeting Agenda

Tuesday, November 7, 2023 at 7:00 pm

Please make every effort to join us in person at Classic Foods: 817 NE Madrona. Or online on Zoom: https://zoom.us/j/3014662210?pwd=d3VKbXkzVldqYzNWU2RwVm9OUkZyZz09

Meeting ID: 301 466 2210  Passcode: WNA

Also online at Facebook Live

Link to November Meeting Recording:


Welcome and Vision:

“In the future, Woodlawn will be a place where people live harmoniously, respectfully, and in support of one another.  The neighborhood will be a clean and thriving community… All Woodlawn residents will share and pursue the common values of health, efficiency, beauty, equity, and justice.”

7:00 – 7:15 Introductions

  • Please share name, pronouns, & what brought you to tonight’s meeting
  • Quick share:  “What’s one of the most fun childhood memories you have?”

7:15 – 8:00 General Business

  • Approve October meeting notes – APPROVED.
  • Presentation and Q & A by Leah Benson, a Woodlawn neighbor and co-chair of the government transition advisory board (GTAG) for the city of Portland.

Leah Benson’s entire presentation and the question-and-answer session that followed are available on the recording above. Here are a few cursory notes from her very informative presentation:

60% Portland voted YES in Nov. 2022 to change our government, the entire charter of how it all works. The GTAG group was appointed by the Mayor in March 2023. They are interested in getting ongoing feedback. Leah encouraged folks to be in touch if they have questions and concerns. LeahBenson@portland.gov for e-mail communication. Three major changes are coming to Portland’s governmental structure: 1. The city will now be broken into 4 districts with 3 elected councilors for each distract, so a total of 12. There will be a city administrator overseeing all of the bureaus. This is a position hired by the mayor. 3.The city of Portland is moving to a ranked-choice voting which research has shown leads to more opportunities to have one’s voice heard and to a more diverse slate of representatives. Leah explained how ranked-choice voting will work. Transition team is open to listening and incorporating feedback that comes up. Research has shown that more diverse folks run and are elected through ranked-choice voting process, worldwide. (No primaries anymore.)  The neighborhood associations and coalitions are going to be “reformulated” and this is primarily happening through Dan Ryan’s office now. Each councilor will have one staff in charge of community relations. Many qualified people are declaring candidacies in all 4 districts. All current terms end December 31, 2024. For more detailed information, listen to the meeting recording (link above) or visit the website for the GTAG  transition team: https://www.portland.gov/transition/advisory

  • Report from  WNA Table at Farmers Market Harvest Festival, Saturday October 28th.

Barbara England reported that the WNA table at the Harvest Festival was a successful outreach event. More neighborhood residents signed up for the e-mail newsletter. It was good to be able to “remind” folks about the existence of WNA and the work we do to connect with the neighborhood and build community.

  • Signup for coordination or helping with ideas from last month’s visioning session
    • Barbara printed off the list of ideas. Discussion tabled until our next meeting in December.
  • Responder for neighbor requests from social media
    • We need someone to respond to communications via email and social media. Linde, Nancy, and Shelby will discuss options and report back to the board.
  • Plans for next year’s National Night Out/Party on Portland
    • We need to begin making plans for this event early in 2024.
  • Youth representatives for WNA
    • Discussion tabled until our next meeting in December.
  • Election of Additional Board Members and NECN Representative
    • Liz nominated Anajala to be our NECN Rep. Keith seconded the motion and board approved.
    • Liz nominated Julian Drury and Shelby Phelan to be WNA Members-at-Large. Melody seconded. Board approved.
  • T-Shirt Fundraiser for WNA
    • Shelby followed up with Tymon. We will move forward on this in early 2024.
  • Time for Neighbor open comments
    • Review of WNA annual activities for newcomers included the Easter Egg Hunt, the National Night Out Event in first week of August, and (historically) the neighborhood cleanup in late May.
    • Anjala mentioned a new potential activity. An amateur theater group wants to do plays in the Woodlawn Park amphitheater. Also Dekum Street Theater will be opening with live theater and other events this winter.
    • Anjala mentioned another new potential activity – a neighborhood scavenger hunt as a way to support Woodlawn businesses. However, this event would have to be invented from scratch.

8:00 – 8:20 Board Business

  • Treasurer’s Report –  $5789.90 balance. No new checks anticipated being written.
  • NECN Report – Anjala
    • Anajala takes NECN meeting notes. At the last meeting, discussion about changes needed at NECN to adapt to the new changed city government structures. NECN is looking for an operations manager. Key position needed for them to be ready to compete for grants in the newly reorganized city government. NECN is in good financial standing. New group of active and interested board members.
  • Secretary Report – Nancy
    • Nancy asked new board members to send in biographical information and a photograph so we can have the board members for 2023-24 updated on our Go Woodlawn website. She will also be working on updating the site including adding events, recycling good content from past blog posts that continues to be relevant, cleaning up the files that were corrupted by a spam attack a while  back, etc.
    • Items from the recent email newsletter have also been posted on the Go Woodlawn blog. If anyone has items that should be publicized, send them to her and she will get them up on the site.
  • Outreach and Community Engagement Report – Linde
    • Newsletter is up to over 550 Subscribers. Linde will work on getting Facebook posts up and running.
  • Land Use and Transportation Report – Update on meeting re: Traffic control Dekum Triangle – Anjala
    • 5 projects related to land use and transportation. PDX Raceway uses leaded gas and lead contamination is strong within two miles of the raceway. That area is considered a park by the city and the city is not cooperating with the neighborhoods closest to it to reduce the lead fuel. This will be up for discussion at the next LUTC meeting. Skateboarder issues in the neighborhood are also to be discussed.
    • LAND USE – Lots that previously had 1 dwelling are now being developed as 4-plexes. This has been allowed since zoning changes were made to create greater density.
  • Farmer’s Market Update – Harvest Festival and Holiday Market – Keith
    • Season has ended. Successful season. We have $6744 in bank but still need to pay the market manager and return earmarked SNAP funds to a grant funder.
    • Winter holiday market at the Village Ballroom December 16th, indoors, with a raffle. Looking over vendor applications next week.
  • Neighborhood Emergency Team (NET) – Erin
    • Barbara got a request from the NET folks about more potential emergency shelters to be found within our neighborhood.
    • Woodlawn Park is the gathering place for a potential emergency like an earthquake. The NET– trained neighborhood volunteers – and the BEECN folks trained to communicate with fire station and other emergency workers to monitor the emergency. There’s ongoing online and in-person training for this stuff. Anjala is a BEECN. Nancy will reach out to Erin to find out who we can invite to come to speak at one of the WNA meetings about the NET and BEECN program.
    • Free water testing kits for lead are available from the city.


8:20 – 8:30 Additional agenda items and announcements

The public domain image above is the November 23, 1903 minutes of the Desloge Consolidated Lead Co.