Skip to:

The Latest

  • First Chapters: A Lifetime of Stories Starts Here

    Josephine Community Libraries wants to hear the community's thoughts on how the libraries can best serve our youngest readers as they begin their lifetimes of reading.   Share your experiences and opinions about our Josephine Community Libraries children’s spaces, resources, and programs.  The responses you provide will be compiled by Oregon’s Kitchen Table, ensuring all that responses are anonymous, and overall survey results will be shared with the community and JCLI staff this summer.  Josephine Community Libraries will use the results to improve our children’s libraries.


    If you live in Josephine County, log in now or if you don't have a log in, create an account to access the consultation questions. 


    The consultation will be active until June 29th, 2015. 


  • New Oregonian-to-Oregonian Microlending Opportunity!

    A couple of months ago we shared our new partnership with Community Sourced Capitol, a Pacific Northwest B-Corps working with Oregon small businesses and entrepreneurs to access loans from within their own communities. Already, Oregonians have helped two businesses gain funding to expand and grow – Genki-Su and TeaScape. Currently, there are two Oregonians seeking funding from fellow Oregonians who want to invest back into their own communities. Check out Hottie Das and Hot Winter, which is oh so near the goal in the last day of the campaign. You can view all the Oregon crowdfunded micro-lending campaigns on our partner page. We’re excited to see that our partnership has helped raise $27,350 with 87 folks participating so far!

    The owner of Hottie Das, Jason Buckley, is part of A Social Ignition, the groundbreaking entrepreneurship program for incarcerated individuals in transition, is marking its first-ever graduate to launch a business. Jason Buckley has partnered with Community Sourced Capital (CSC) to fund his dream of opening a mobile hot dog cart, coined Hottie Das. Throughout his time in prison, Jason took entrepreneurship classes designed to teach him the skills needed to build the life he’d dreamt for himself. Today, with a businesses plan and supportive team in place, Jason is eager to get his business off the ground—indeed, this is a mobile hot dog stand we’re talking about. A Social Ignition teaches entrepreneurship both inside and outside of incarceration and works to reduce the stigma and shame of a criminal record.

    Here’s Jason’s own words about his start up:

    This funding will help with overall onetime start up costs that include the price of a hot dog cart, licenses, and permits. Funding will also help cover my rolling costs which include my inventory and overhead during the first month. Funding this business with responsible capital with the help of my community and new friends, would definitely mean just as much to me as running the business itself. It would also support the vision I have for my own life. Because I know goals are constant and never without consequence. Please consider buying a square to help me get my business off the ground, it would support me and the community with a new neighborhood friendly eating experience. Recognizing the service needs of my customers, and community is something that will always come first!! I believe hottie das represents a humble quality that chooses to live in the solution, and would be a business the community would really enjoy.

    And we want to share another success story from last year in Astoria the Daily Astorian covered about how community members participated in micro-lending to expand a local coffee shop.

  • News, News, News: Honors! Hot Peppers! Portland School Boundaries!

    We've got some exciting news to share this week!

    The Ash Center for Democratic Governance and Innovation at the John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University, recognized Oregon's Kitchen Table this week as one of four finalists for the Roy and Lila Ash Innovations in Public Engagement in Government Award. These initiatives represent the committed efforts of city, state, and federal governments to engage with the communities and citizens they represent and were selected by a cohort of policy experts, researchers, and practitioners. We're incredibly honored to be recognized – and that all of your efforts in being a part of this work are recognized, too. Oregon's Kitchen Table IS the over 13,000 Oregonians who have taken their seats and participated in important discussions, decisions, and projects around the state. You can read more about the award here. We're also not too surprised to see that a few other Oregon-based programs making up the state's tapestry of civic engagement opportunities are also included as Top Ten Programs!

    As part of our partnership with Oregon Business Council's Poverty Reduction Task Force, we are working to support Oregonian-to-Oregonian micro-lending and help reduce Oregon's poverty rate. Our partner in crowdfunded microlending,Community Sourced Capital, has a new Oregon small business seeking funding to expand to new stores around Oregon, Washington and California. Hot Winter – a producer of fermented hot sauce – contracts with growers in the Willamette Valley to grow heirloom varieties not available in most markets. Interested in helping see small Oregon businesses prosper? Participate now in helping fund Hot Winter! Thanks to many Oregonians like those of us around the Kitchen Table, two other Oregon small businesses have already received their funding.

    Tomorrow, May 8th, is the final day for anyone within the Portland Public Schools district – parents, staff, teachers, community members residing in the district – to weigh in on important decisions facing the district, especially around boundary changes. Today's second graders will be graduates in 2025: what do we want their schools to look like between now and then? Give your input now here at Oregon's Kitchen Table.

  • Last Chance to Weigh in on Portland Public Schools 2025

    In 2025, today’s second graders will be graduating seniors, but between now and then, Portland Public Schools will be making a number of decisions that will affect these students.  This week is the final week to weigh in on those decisions!

    Check out PPS Superintendent Carol Smith’s invitation above to the greater community to provide input here at Oregon’s Kitchen Table – a some of those future graduates trying out caps and gowns.

  • Portland Public Schools 2025

    This month we’re hosting the second of two surveys related to Portland Public Schools – and the newest one (Portland Public Schools 2025) asks those of you within the PPS District (whether you live in the district, work in the district, or send your kids to district schools) to weigh in on some incredibly important issues.

    You’ll have the chance to give your input as the district prepares to make important decisions for the future of all its students on boundaries, educational programs, the enrollment and transfer system, buildings, and middle grade placement.

    This is your opportunity as community members to help shape a number of decisions Portland Public Schools will be making as the district continues to grow.  Make sure your voice is heard!

    Log in to your account (or set one up if you haven’t already) on Oregon’s Kitchen Table to answer some questions on these topics. And please share with friends, neighbors, and colleagues. The survey will remain open until May 8, 2015.

    The future of our schools is important to everyone in our community. Share your thoughts today.

  • Oregonian-to-Oregonian Microlending

    We are excited to announce a new development over here at Oregon’s Kitchen Table! In partnership with Oregon Business Council’s Poverty Reduction Task Force, we are working to support Oregonian-to-Oregonian micro-lending. Reducing Oregon’s poverty rate from its current level (16.7 percent) to less than 10 percent is one of the top goals of Oregon Business Council and its allies. Small business in Oregon represent more than 90 percent of all employers and employ over half of the private-sector labor force. By supporting small businesses, we can all pitch in to make our state more prosperous!

    As a first step, Oregon’s Kitchen Table has partnered with Community Sourced Capital, a certified B corporation focused on creating stronger communities through micro-lending. Over the next few months, we will highlight Oregon entrepreneurs that are seeking capital to begin or expand their businesses, giving other Oregonians the chance to help make their communities more prosperous.

    Right now, there are two great Oregon companies seeking loans to expand their businesses – Genki-Su and TeaScape.

  • PPS Successful Schools Survey Extension and Raffle

    Portland Public Schools is extending the deadline for parents and guardians to complete the PPS Successful Schools Survey to March 6th, so if you are a PPS parent / guardian and have not done so yet, join Oregon's Kitchen Table and share your experience at your student’s school today!  Thousands of parents and guardians have already weighed in, but we want to hear from as many of you as possible.

    For anyone who takes the survey – either online through Oregon’s Kitchen Table or via a paper survey – you’ll be entered into a raffle PPS is holding! Prizes donated by PPS partners include a soccer ball signed by the Portland Timbers, a jersey signed by the Portland Timbers, Portland Thorns tickets, Adidas employee store passes and Qdoba meals.

  • Results for December 2014 Early Learning Consultation on Kindergarten Assessment Results

    In December 2014, the Oregon Department of Education in partnership with Oregon’s Kitchen Table conducted an online consultation with key stakeholders across the state of Oregon. The consultation was conducted to help inform the efforts of the state’s Early Learning Hubs, which are working across the state to make resources and supports more available, more accessible and more effective for children and families that have historically been overrepresented in the opportunity gap and underrepresented in services.

    Early Learning Kindergarten Assessment Results Consultation

    In Spring 2015, ODE will hold a series of in-person deliberative events to discuss how the assessment can help parents, K-12 educators and child care providers improve coordination and partnership.

  • Update to Our Privacy Policy

    We have revised our privacy policy to reflect some of the changes – like the new log in system – we’re implementing at Oregon’s Kitchen Table and to more clearly reflect both how we collect data and how we use that data. We’ll be sending out an email notification to all of you once we’ve completed transferring new emails to our email system. You can view the Privacy Policy here.

    We’re very grateful for the thoughtful feedback from an Oregon software developer, Bill Fitzgerald, who volunteered his time to help us review the policy and think through how to improve Oregon’s Kitchen Table’s commitment to safeguarding the information you share with us. Thank you, Bill!

    You can find the updated Privacy Policy here.

  • Questions about Portland Public Schools Successful Schools Survey? Answers here!

    We’re heading into the third week of the Portland Public Schools Successful Schools Climate Survey – and nearly 3,000 parents and guardians have shared their school experiences through Oregon’s Kitchen Table!

    Portland Public Schools has put together a Q and A document to clarify some questions that have come up. You can also view it below.

    Because we’ve switched to a login system and we’ve made some adjustments over the past 3 years of conducting consultations, it’s time to review and update our privacy policy! We’ll be announcing updates / changes soon – both via the website and email.

    And don’t forget to set up your login if you haven’t already!

    PDF icon Successful Schools Survey - Frequently Asked Questions
  • PPS Successful Schools Survey Launches today

    Our first survey of 2015 (and the first one using our new login system) is live today!  Oregon’s Kitchen Table is hosting the Portland Public Schools Successful Schools Survey Jan 20 – Feb 28.

    The Successful Schools Survey will focus on school climate – such as whether a school feels welcoming and safe and in what ways teaching and learning is supported. The survey comes at the request of the Portland School Board and Superintendent Carole Smith.

    The survey on Oregon’s Kitchen Table is available to PPS families of all students at all grade levels. The survey will be available in English, Chinese, Somali, Spanish, Russian, and Vietnamese. Later this spring PPS will ask for additional input on your vision for the future of PPS. Help chart the course for the next 10 years at Portland Public Schools. Create your login and once you’ve completed that process (or simply log in if you’ve already created one), click on “Live Surveys” to access the Successful Schools Survey.

    As with any survey or consultation on Oregon’s Kitchen Table, your personal information (email, name if you choose to provide it) are not shared with anyone and your responses are and not tied to personal identifying information.  When you join Oregon’s Kitchen Table, you are assigned a unique identifying number that tracks the surveys you take.  All responses are aggregated together and will be published under our Results section later this spring.

  • Happy New Year, Happy New Login System!

    Happy New Year from Oregon‘s Kitchen Table!

    We’re excited to start 2015 with some improvements in how we engage with you! One of the first improvements – already up and running – is a new login system that allows you to create a username and password.  We’ve heard from a number of you that you want to simply be able to go to the site and take an available consultation, rather than have to dig through emails or try to find a link. We also want you to be able to let us know if you’ve moved to a new zip code so we can make sure we’re contacting you about consultations and other engagement opportunities specific to your community and region.  Make sure to head on over to and create your login. You’ll need to have a login to access consultations, so set yours up to take your seat at the table.  You’ll be asked to set up a log in and some demographic questions and then you’ll receive a confirmation email with a link to set up your password.

    If you have any problems at all with the new system, please don’t hesitate to contact us!

    We’ve got a few local and statewide consultations brewing (if you’re a Portland Public Schools parent or guardian, Oregon‘s Kitchen Table will be hosting PPS’s Successful Schools survey starting Jan 20th). And even more exciting, later this Spring we’ll be rolling out additional new features that we’re still developing, so stay tuned for more!

    Set up your log in now by going to

  • Closing out 2014 – from one Oregonian to another

    We’ve had a busy past few months at Oregon’s Kitchen Table, preparing for a number of statewide and local consultations in 2015 (the Successful Schools Climate Survey for Portland Public Schools families and a statewide consultation on poverty and prosperity in Oregon) and working on some new developments here that we’re very excited to share with you all soon.  Stay tuned.

    In the meantime, if you’re an early learning provider or advocate, K-12 teacher or administrator, or other early learning resource, the State’s Early Learning Division wants to hear from you! Share your thoughts about how to communicate and use the data from the Kindergarten Assessment.

    Para la encuesta en español, haz clic aquí: Encuesta sobre la evaluación de kinder de Oregon

    Envíe por correo la encuesta completa a más tardar el 30 de diciembre a la siguiente dirección:

    Oregon’s Kitchen Table
    506 SW Mill St., Urban Center 720
    P.O. Box 751, Portland, OR 97201
    O escanear y enviar el formulario completo a

    And, as 2014 draws to an end and we prepare to start 2015, we want to share with you another way to engage with fellow Oregonians – Oregonian to Oregonian giving. Check out some of these stories of Oregonians and consider helping another Oregonian leverage funds to help their small business prosper this holiday!

    Wishing all you Oregonians a Happy New Year!

    PDF icon Encuesta Sobre la evaluación de jardín de niños de Oregon.pdf
  • One for The Annals of Hope

    “We are a people capable of self-government,
    and worthy of it.”
    – Thomas Jefferson

    So here we are:  Day 9 of a partial federal government shutdown.  5 days from a possible default on the national debt.  No solution in sight.  Plenty of finger-pointing and blame-slinging.  But no clear path forward.

    It would be easy to think that the grand experiment of democracy has failed—that we are too divided as a people to govern ourselves, to guard the public good, to create a space where real problems are solved.

    But despite all the handwringing and despair, around Oregon’s Kitchen Table we’ve had quite a different week.  We’ve had a week of tremendous hope and possibility.  Yesterday marked the end of the Build Gateway Green campaign, and it’s been quite a trip.  Just to remind you—Gateway Green is an unused parcel of land between two freeways in East Portland.  Two incredibly visionary Portlanders imagined it could be repurposed—recycled (excuse the pun)—into a world-class bike park with amenities for everyone, cyclist or not. Over the past eight years, those two people have gathered a group of supporters, partners, and volunteers.

    And this summer, they brought it to Oregon Solutions and Oregon’s Kitchen Table.  529 Oregonians joined the movement and weighed in with their dreams and aspirations for this unused parcel of land through an Oregon’s Kitchen Table Consultation.  Then, in Oregon’s first major civic crowdfunding effort, 756 people contributed to the project, raising nearly $124,000.  Literally hundreds of people gave time, money, and good ideas to a project that benefits the whole community.  The project isn’t over.  Gateway Green still has a ways to go before there are shovels in the ground, but suddenly a huge team has emerged to work side by side with the founders and Friends of Gateway Green.

    And throughout it all, no one was pointing fingers or slinging blame.  Everybody just pitched in, worked together, and did what they could to make a difference.  We’re proud of the Gateway Green team and our little corner of the Republic.  And it sure gives us hope that we have a thing or two to teach those in our nation’s capitol about governing ourselves.

    – Wendy Willis

  • Help Make Gateway Green a Reality

    Eight years ago, Gateway Green was just a wild idea. These 38 acres between I-84 and I-205 in East Portland once housed a jail. Now, the community is on the verge of turning this unused space into a great outdoor recreational and mountain biking destination right in the city.  Over 500 of you in the Portland metro region already took a step to make this happen by taking your seat at the Kitchen Table and weighing in on features of the park to help complete the design work.  We’ve got a high level summary of the results of the Build Gateway Green consultation with a more complete report coming next week.  We’re really excited to bring you another experiment in civic engagement – this time the chance to help build Gateway Green by directly contributing to the project.

    Tomorrow – on September 5th  – the Friends of Gateway Green are asking everyone to help reach the goal of $100,000 on crowdfunding site Indiegogo to make the vision for Gateway Green a reality.  The money raised will be used to complete the design work for the park.  Contributors will receive a thank you gift, ranging from a Build Gateway Green t-shirt designed by artist Mike Klay to a VIP guest pass to a fall celebration at outdoor biking venue Lumberyard.  If you’re not able to make a contribution, you can still help by spreading the word.  In fact, sharing the Build Gateway Green page on Indiegogo – or posting it on Facebook and Twitter – and asking other people to share it, too, is the key to making the crowdfunding campaign a success.

    On September 5th, give at (click on the big Contribute Now button on the right hand side of the page) and join us in this experiment linking public input and crowdfunding to help build a great public space!

    PDF icon Build Gateway Green Consultation Summary Report
  • Build Gateway Green

    Over the past year, we’ve tackled tough issues throughout the state with the Governor’s budget priorities and the 2013 Oregon Values and Beliefs survey.  We did our first county-wide consultation in Curry County with residents weighing in on options to address their county’s budget.  Now the Kitchen Table is set for those of you in several counties (Clackamas, Columbia, Hood, Multnomah, and Washington) to help turn an overlooked parcel of land in East Portland into a vibrant, off-road bike park in a gateway to the region.

    A hidden treasure sits in the hub of East Portland’s Gateway area: 38 acres of unused, partially wooded land.  Nestled between I-84 and I-205, this is a perfect spot for an off-road biking park! The City of Portland has already committed to operate the park once we all come together to build it, but now the Friends of Gateway Green needs grassroots input and support to continue to design the space based on the public’s dreams for Gateway Green.

    Share your thoughts here at the Kitchen Table about features you want to see in Gateway Green.  The responses you and others provide will be compiled and presented to the park’s design team as they move onto the next round of design.  This is your opportunity to help shape a regional asset  that we can all enjoy for generations to come.

    The consultation will be open until August 23rd.

    Give your input into the next round of design work to make the most of this space for the whole region. To learn more about Gateway Green and the project  to date, visit the Friends of Gateway Green.

  • Celebrate Independence and Self-governance with Oregon’s Kitchen Table

    What better way to celebrate independence and self governance, Oregonians? We’re extending the consultation to give more Oregonians the chance to sign up for Oregon’s Kitchen Table and take the 2013 Oregon Values & Beliefs survey!

    With nearly 600 Oregonians taking their seats at the table for the first time in just this past week, we’re extending the 2013 Values and Beliefs consultation until the end of this month.  If you haven’t already, you’ve still got a few more weeks to respond to the survey (make sure to check your email for a link from Oregon’s Kitchen Table with the subject line “2013 Oregon Values and Beliefs”).  As always, if you experience any technical difficulties, please contact us and we’ll tackle them together.

    We’ve partnered with the sponsors of the 2013 Values and Beliefs survey because all of us want to give all Oregonians the opportunity to weigh in on this historic survey – this is your chance (once in a decade!) to let decision makers know what is important to you about Oregon and our future as a state.  Take a few minutes to invite your family, friends, neighbors, colleagues, and fellow Oregonians to join you in celebrating independence and self governance at the Kitchen Table!

  • Celebrating Birthdays Around Oregon’s Kitchen Table

    This is our birthday—well, not our exact birthday, but I guess our birth season.  As it turns out, we were so busy launching the Oregon Values and Beliefs Survey last month, we didn’t take time to blow out the candles!  But, where cake’s concerned, it’s always better late than never.  Since Oregon’s Kitchen Table was born a year—and a few days—ago, over 3,500 Oregonians have “taken a seat” and given their thoughtful opinions on everything from healthcare choices to county services.  We have made new friends across the state and have had a chance to take a peek at many of your kitchen tables through the photographs you’ve submitted.  We have made mistakes and made course corrections and even laughed at ourselves.  We have learned a lot and dreamed big dreams for the future.  Most of all, we have felt grateful to share this state with so many tremendous and generous Oregonians.

    We chose the metaphor of the Kitchen Table for all of those reasons—because the kitchen table is a place where we gather to talk over the hard stuff and sort out our differences.  Because the table is where we laugh together but also where we decide how to spend our money and where to send the five-year-old to school.  We set priorities, check in, and change our mind if we need to.  So, we are glad to have spent this year at the Kitchen Table with you.

    The current consultation – the 2013 Oregon Values and Beliefs Survey—is a doozy!  It is a follow-on from the Values and Beliefs surveys from 1992 and 2002 and will be critical in informing decision-makers for at least the next ten years.  Because the Kitchen Table is open to all Oregonians, everyone who wants to can participate.  That is new, and it is awesome!  So, I hope everyone will take advantage of the opportunity.

    Today is my actual birthday.  And to celebrate my state and its dedicated, quirky, creative citizens, I’m going to do two things. First, I’m going to send a reminder to my friends and family to sign up for Oregon’s Kitchen Table and to take the 2013 Oregon Values and Beliefs Survey.  Second, I am going to make a donation to Oregon’s Kitchen Table so we can keep serving Oregon and Oregonians for years to come.  I wonder if you’ll join me in doing something to celebrate all these birthdays—encourage your friends to join and complete the V&B survey, post a picture of your kitchen table on our Facebook page, make a contribution to the Table.   Thanks for anything you can do to support our virtual gathering place.

    So, when I blow out my candles tonight, I’ll be thinking of all of you and wishing for another great year around Oregon’s Kitchen Table.  Happy Birthday to and from the Table!

    Wendy Willis

  • What kind of Oregon do you want to live in?

    Our first consultation with you in 2013 is a big one! Oregon’s Kitchen Table is serving as the home for all Oregonians to take part in the state’s 2013 Values and Beliefs survey this spring. The Oregon Values and Beliefs Sponsors – Oregon Community FoundationOregon Public BroadcastingOregon State UniversityOregon Health & Science University, and DHM Research – believe now is the time to give voice to all Oregonians. “This is a unique partnership that sets the table for Oregonians to help shape the future of the state,” said Adam Davis, Founder and Principal of DHM Research, and the research partner of the project.

    If you’re already a member of Oregon’s Kitchen Table, you’ll receive an email with a link to the survey. Click on it to share what you think, value and believe about the kind of state you want to live in.

    If you’re not already a member, this is a great opportunity to join and take part in this survey. It only happens once a decade! Go sign up for Oregon’s Kitchen Table, and then you will be asked to share your opinion about some of Oregon’s most pressing decisions — from health and health care to jobs and the economy. Oregonians will have until June 30, 2013 to submit input but can sign up on the website at any time. The information that you provide will be reported back to policy-makers and the public in an impartial and non-partisan way and will be part of the state’s decision making landscape for years to come.

    Upon completion of the following questionnaire, you can choose to be entered into a raffle to win one of 45 prizes to be awarded at random: Five $200 cash cards, twenty 1959 Oregon Statehood and twenty 1954 Lewis and Clark Expedition blocks of 4, unused US commemorative postage stamps.
    So pull up a chair and join the conversation on Oregon’s Values and Beliefs.

    We want to hear from you!

    Wendy Willis

    Oregon Values and Beliefs Sponsors

    • Oregon Community Foundation
    • Oregon Public Broadcasting
    • Oregon State University
    • Oregon Health and Sciences University
    • DHM Research

    Project Partners

    • Oregon’s Kitchen Table
    • Northwest Health Foundation
    • AARP Oregon
    • Rural Development Initiatives
    • Meyer Memorial Trust
    • Public Strategies Group
  • Oregon’s Values and Beliefs Survey

    We’ve teamed up with the sponsors of the Oregon’s Values and Beliefs Survey to invite all Oregonians to share their vision for the future of Oregon. The Oregon Community Foundation, Oregon Public Broadcasting, Oregon State University, Oregon Health and Sciences University and DHM Research have joined forces and resources to create a comprehensive survey to take a deep look at the values, beliefs, and opinions of Oregonians on issues as diverse as government, public services and taxation; economic development and jobs; education; health and health care; the environment; and energy.

    While the project sponsors are conducting a scientific survey to assure valid and statistically reliable results for five regions of the state, Oregon’s Kitchen Table is giving all Oregonians the chance to weigh in on the state’s future.  The information that you provide will be reported back to policy-makers and the public in an impartial and non-partisan way and will be part of the state’s decision-making landscape for years to come.

    If you’ve already joined, soon you’ll receive an email with a link to take you to the survey.  If you haven’t joined yet, go sign up for Oregon’s Kitchen Table, and then you will be asked to share your opinion about some of Oregon’s most pressing decisions. Oregonians will have until June 30, 2013 to submit input but can sign up at the website at any time.

    We want to hear from you!


Subscribe to The Latest