PAALF Announces Connecting Black Portland Campaign

October 8, 2013

Members of the 2013 African American Leadership Academy (AALA), a program of the Portland African American Leadership Forum (PAALF), are pleased to announce the launch of a new campaign, which strives to improve the connectivity and sense of unity among Portland’s African American community. Gentrification and other inequities have made it increasingly difficult for African Americans to connect to one another. As a result, PAALF is spearheading an initiative called Connecting Black Portland.

Connecting Black Portland is a multi-pronged campaign that will include the following components:

  • An electronic, web-based informational guide that will serve as a centralized resource for the African American/Black community and; 
  • A motto or self-affirming statement to unify the community around the central theme of black love and black pride; and a logo to represent the present, past and future story of Portland’s Black community.

Resource Guide:
The web-based resource guide will be created from surveying and cataloging African American/Black business owners, non-profit leaders, entrepreneurs and other community leaders in industries such as health care, direct services, community-based organizations, finance, beauty, restaurants, nightlife, etc. This brief survey will be distributed to organizations in October and can be completed online here.

Logo and Statement Contest:
PAALF will be hosting a community art contest, in which we will solicit local African American community members to submit a logo and self-affirming statement to represent Portland’s diverse Black community. The winner of the contest will receive several prizes, including having their design/image used throughout the Connecting Black Portland Campaign, which will involve the viral distribution of logo-branded t-shirts, stickers, buttons, etc.

Contest submissions will be collected through December  16. After all submissions are collected, they will be posted on our website for public judging. To learn more about the contest or to submit a design, please click here.


PAALF’s primary goal is to enforce an action agenda that improves the health and wellbeing of local African Americans. Connecting Black Portland seeks to achieve this goal by connecting the community, while creating self-determined and positive messaging that speaks to our legacy and aspirations.

For additional information, questions or opportunities to get involved, please contact Rachel Gilmer,