Together, with the release of Count Her In, we've ended a 20-year data drought for women and girls in Oregon. We have been honored and humbled by the tremendous excitement, thoughtful feedback, and wonderful media coverage surrounding the report's release. There is so much to celebrate, and so much work yet to be done, but for the moment, we just want to say THANK YOU. Thank you to all of our members and supporters who made this report possible. Thank you to the many contributors who worked tirelessly with us on the report over the past year. Please read the acknowledgement page of the report, page 117. We are deeply grateful to all of the extraordinary women who came together to make this report a reality. They, and you, have helped bring us a step closer to making Oregon a great place for all women and girls.
With much gratitude, Emily Evans Executive Director, Women’s Foundation of Oregon
We released Count Her In, A Report about Women and Girls in Oregon, on September 21 on the Capitol steps in Salem. Governor Kate Brown spoke (video clip here!) at the report launch, and many state senators and representatives attended.
We're pleased to announce that momentum from Count Her In continues to build. Here's a selection of the news coverage so far:
Meet Jessica Arzate: We were thrilled to have Jessica with us last Wednesday at the release of our report on the Capitol steps in Salem. Thank you, Jessica!
Name: Jessica Arzate Age: 29 Occupation: Early Learning Multnomah Manager Member of the Women's Foundation since: 2016
What’s your favorite spot in Oregon? Chinidere Mountain in Mt. Hood National Forest. At its summit, you get the most beautiful 360-degree view of the Cascades.
What quality do you most admire in others? I admire people who are respectful. We live in a world that is constantly changing and becoming increasingly diverse in every way imaginable. Everyone has the freedom to be who they want to be and that requires our respect.
Which talent would you most like to have? The ability to read minds. My family has a silly way of bearing more burdens than are necessary, but they don’t say so. It would be great to know what they’re really thinking and help them unload some of those burdens.
What was your first volunteer experience? When I was in middle school, I used to volunteer all summer long at my old elementary school. I guess I’ve always been an educator at heart and even during summer vacation, I couldn’t stay out of the classroom!
What’s the best place to eat in our great state? Selfishly, nothing beats eating Mexican food with my family. It’s hard to find anything else that compares to my family’s cooking. Sorry Oregon!
What do you consider your greatest achievement? I’m the first person in my entire family to earn a Master’s degree. I was born to Mexican immigrants, with little to no formal education. The odds were stacked against me from the beginning and continuously throughout my life. I wasn’t supposed to be educated, but I earned that privilege.
Which woman (living or dead) do you most admire? My beautiful mother, Celina Arzate. I am the woman I am today because of everything she sacrificed. She’s the oldest daughter of seven siblings and experienced hardship at a very young age. She dreamt of a better life for her children, so she left her country. The freedom I now have to be the woman I want to be is because of my mother’s courage to leave her home.
What’s your most treasured possession? I don’t have anything physical I consider a treasured possession, but something I treasure the most is trust. When I have your trust, I treasure and cherish it. When I give you my trust, it’s because I treasure our connection.
What is your personal motto? When you want something so passionately, all the universe conspires in your favor. It’s the message I got out of my favorite book, The Alchemist.
What’s your idea of perfect happiness? For me it’s family, nature, and love. Everything I do is for my family; I’m happiest when I’m in nature; and I’m a hopeless romantic. If everyone worked to better position their family, spent more time honoring and respecting nature, and loved endlessly…our world would be beautiful. That’s perfect happiness.
What makes you laugh uncontrollably? My 2-year-old nephew! He is a riot and I get the most exhausting ab workout from laughing so hard!
Why are you a member of the Women’s Foundation? My mother taught me the importance of lifting other women instead of competing with them. She said that helping other women would secure our futures because women are the future. I am a member of the Women’s Foundation because I want a better future for women and girls in Oregon. I’m energized by the foundation’s leadership, its members, and dedication to interrupt the systems of oppression that keep women and girls on the margins in Oregon.
Make a Difference
"Everyone deserves a life free of domestic and sexual violence." That statement is the foundational belief of Call to Safety, an incredible organization working to end domestic and sexual violence in Oregon.
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