April 2021

AAWCC Oregon

Spring 2021 Newsletter

3.18.2021 - DoD AAWCC Oregon_Page_1.jpg

Day of Dialogue

On March 18, 2021, AAWCC Oregon hosted an event recognizing the National AAWCC Day of Dialogue. Over 70 women attended and engaged in thoughtful conversation about issues impacting women working at community colleges as well as celebrating Women's History Month and International Women's Day. Participants heard from AAWCC board members, participated in breakout rooms, and used Jamboard to jot notes and answer the questions posed to the groups. Jamboard - a digital interactive whiteboard developed by Google - was a big hit as most of us learned some cool new technology, and the hour flew by!

President's Message

Donna Lewelling

AAWCC President

Donna Lewelling.jpg

As the spring blossoms begin to bloom, I am reminded that new beginnings often come after rough conditions. As the birds emerge from the nests and fill the air with their songs, I am reminded of how much listening to others tell their stories makes my life richer.

The recent Day of Dialogue discussion with our AAWCC members filled my heart with hope for the future and inspired me to be the change I hope to see in the world. To use my voice so that others can be heard and to stand up tall to help them be seen.

So as the spring months continue and new flowers bloom and birds arrive with new songs, I hope you each take a few minutes to stop, look, listen, and take a deep breath. Together we can change the world and make it a better place. One moment, one action, one dialogue at a time.

AAWCC Oregon

Summer Conference 2021

The AAWCC Oregon Summer Conference will be held virtually on July 15, 2021. The conference theme is Oh Snap! We're Back . . . Let's Do This! Details are still being confirmed, but please be sure to hold the date on your calendar. Look for registration details coming soon.

AAWCC summer conference.jpg

Screenshot of

2020 Summer Conference

Oregon AAWCC Campus Ambassadors

AAWCC Oregon has redesigned the AAWCC Ambassador Program (formerly known as Campus Contacts) for our organization in order to increase statewide involvement. The first gathering of the Ambassadors was held last November, and the group has met several times to learn more about their roles in sparking interest in AAWCC at their campuses, getting out state communications, and being a liaison to the state board.

Our Campus Ambassadors are:

  • Blue Mountain Community College - Velda Arnaud
  • Central Oregon Community College - Jennifer Newby
  • Chemeketa Community College - Lynn Irvin
  • Clackamas Community College - Teresa Robertson
  • Clatsop Community College - Joann Zahn
  • Columbia Community College - Courtney Judah
  • Community Colleges and Workforce Development - Kasena Dailey
  • Klamath Community College - Shannon Childs
  • Lane Community College - Tiana Marrone-Creech
  • Linn-Benton Community College - Marci Johnston
  • Mt. Hood Community College - Eliza Lane
  • Oregon Coast Community College - Kathleen Andrews
  • Oregon Community College Association - Katie Archambault
  • Portland Community College - Cheri Maas-Anderson
  • Rogue Community College - Donna Plummer
  • Southwestern Oregon Community College - Anna Cole
  • Tillamook Bay Community College - Britney Noel
  • Treasure Valley Community College - Gina Roper
  • Umpqua Community College - Joy Yori

Thanks to our amazing Ambassadors taking on a leadership role with our board and their campuses, AAWCC Oregon will be an even stronger organization with more women participating, growing in leadership, and learning about educational, career, and social opportunities. Increased participation benefits everyone—our students, our schools, our families, our state, and ourselves.

AAWCC Oregon

Fall Conference 2020 - The Event We'd Been Waiting For

The annual Oregon AAWCC Fall Conference was held virtually for the first time last November. The conference was held on November 12 and 13 and was a huge success! The theme was 2020: The Year We've Been Waiting For? in response to the beautiful poem by Leslie Dwight (see at right).

Keynote speakers included Doreen Dodgen-Magee, Psy.D, who emphasized the importance of self-care during the pandemic, and our very own PCC Dean of Student Engagement and AAWCC VP Records Lauren Smith, who talked about the impact of 2020 on all of us and our community college students.

We can't wait to be together in person, but all who attended felt connected to their colleagues at other campuses and organizations. Be sure to attend the next AAWCC Oregon event to stay in touch with women around the state!

Screen Shot 2020-10-26 at 3.54.42 PM.png

2020 Carolyn DesJardins Award

DesJardins Award.jpg

The 2020 AAWCC Oregon Carolyn DesJardins Award was presented at the Fall Conference and was awarded to Sheri McIntyre. Sheri is the Tutor Coordinator in the Linn-Benton Community College Learning Center and also serves as the President of their Classified Association (IACE). With the sudden shift in how jobs are done due to the ongoing pandemic, Sheri has excelled in going above and beyond to serve the students and her fellow co-workers at LBCC. She rises to every challenge and comes out victorious, making a positive difference in the lives of everyone on campus, both students and employees. 

The prestigious AAWCC Carolyn DesJardins award is given to someone who has demonstrated outstanding leadership and made a significant contribution to community colleges. Criteria for receiving the award includes demonstrated ability to inspire, champion, or celebrate women as leaders. 

2020 AAWCC Oregon Excellence Awards

The AAWCC Oregon Community College Excellence Award celebrates individuals whose accomplishments have made a difference for women at their community college. Recipients are chosen by local AAWCC chapters and receive their award at the Fall Conference. Six awards were presented at the conference last fall.

Recipients were: 

  • Linda Ringo-Reyna, Chemeketa Community College
  • Hazel Martinez, Clatsop Community College
  • Malinda Shell, Linn-Benton Community College
  • Jenny Ruelas, Mt. Hood Community College
  • Clare Hansen, Oregon Coast Community College
  • Sarah Tillery, Portland Community College

The AAWCC Oregon Board awards a certificate to honor the recipient. Nominees need not be members of AAWCC. Nominations for the 2021 AAWCC Excellence Award will be sought in October prior to the Fall Conference.

Jenny Ruelas 1.png

Jenny Ruelas

Mt. Hood Community College

Malinda Shell 1.jpg

Malinda Shell

Linn-Benton Community College

Linda Ringo-Reyna 1.jpg

Linda Ringo-Reyna

Chemeketa Community College

Sarah Tillery1.jpg.png

Sarah Tillery

Portland Community College

Hazel Martinez 1.jpg

Hazel Martinez

Clatsop Community College

Clare Hansen 1.png

Clare Hansen

Oregon Coast

Community College



by Donna Plummer

The AAWCC RCC Chapter has been unable to hold our spring and fall clothing sales since last March due to COVID. We typically have thousands of items that sell for $1 each, and the sale proceeds go to assist in scholarships for our students. Not only were we up against COVID restrictions, the wildfires that devastated much of Southern Oregon last summer impacted many of our students and the community at large. According to Jennifer Jackson, Past President of AAWCC RCC, our chapter donated almost all of the collected clothing to the Phoenix Fire Relief Center in Jackson County, which impacted the fire victims directly. Our staff that were storing these items for the sale washed, sorted and packed all of the clothing for easy distribution. We also received another large donation from a local business, My Daughter’s Closet, and the Board voted to donate those items to the Jackson County Foster Parent Association to assist the youth and families in that program.

Our AAWCC RCC Board has been very active in the community to help in these areas and more.


By Teresa Robertson

Spring is in the air, and I miss my drive on campus, seeing all the flowers and blooming trees. The flowers reminding that warmer days are just around the corner, and many trees still standing after a year of wildfires and ice storms. Here at Clackamas Community College, like so many others, we look forward to the time when we will be back on campus and enjoying the beauty of spring.


Clackamas has not had a formal chapter for quite some time, but we are looking for ways to grow our group and become a robust chapter. The AAWCC Ambassador program has built new connections for CCC. Teresa Robertson volunteered to be our AAWCC Campus Ambassador, and she plans to use this new initiative to help build stronger connections with the state chapter as well as with our other state-wide community colleges.


On March 18, 2021, the AAWCC state chapter hosted the annual Day of Dialogue; we had 15 CCC staff members register for the event this year. The focus was on a variety of topics, mostly related to working during the pandemic and those issues that impact us. One staff member sent an email after the event, thanking us for the invite and telling us how great her experience was. Being able to participate in the event via Zoom from her office removed barriers and allowed her to participate. We look forward to more opportunities like this in the future.


A big shout out to the state board – Thank you for all you do and your hard work this past year to continue to provide conference and workshop opportunities. CCC appreciates you all!


By Marci Johnston

The Linn-Benton Community College AAWCC Chapter adapted this year to working remotely and were still able to offer some opportunities to learn, grow and serve our campus and community.  We created a new online membership application this year. We are sending out an AAWCC Newsletter that provides announcements of upcoming events, an AAWCC member short biography and relevant topics such as highlighting Black History Month, etc. We held our general meetings this year via Zoom. Our first meeting of the year included our new college president, Lisa Avery, as our guest speaker. Due to the pandemic lasting way longer than expected, we invited Sandy Minta, Psy.D. to speak on Mental Health: How to Develop Healthy Habits and Coping Strategies. Recently, we participated in the statewide AAWCC Day of Dialogue which was a great conversation!  

Every year we partner with employee groups on campus to hold a Thanksgiving Food Drive. This year we had to adapt to restrictions, so we gave gift cards, donated bags of potatoes and turkeys and gift cards with a drive-by pick-up. As a campus, we raised $10,625, served 202 students and 5 staff providing between 500-1000 individuals a meal for Thanksgiving. We had a friendly competition to raise funds for the drive, and our Deans lost. The punishment was an epic virtual video of them performing a line dance routine for all of campus to see! Let's just say they were brave for sharing their dancing "talents" with us! 

LBCC Food Drive - 2020 Giftcards.jpeg
LBCC Food Drive - 2020 Roadrunner.jpeg


By Lynn Irvin

Chemeketa’s AAWCC chapter continues to support our student scholarships through payroll deductions and will soon be awarding a $1500 scholarship for the next academic year. Several Chemeketans joined the state chapter’s wonderful Day of Dialogue zoom event on March 18 and celebrated Women’s History Month, the life of Ruth Bader Ginsberg and the 100-year anniversary of the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution granting women the right to vote. Then the campaign continued for many more decades to include women of color. Our chapter hosted a Chemeketa Zoom version of the “Hollywood Squares” game show using trivia questions that related to women’s suffrage.


By Donna Zmolek

LCC's local AAWCC Chapter has been staying active during the pandemic. Most employees are working remotely, but that doesn't mean we can't stay connected. In January, the chapter held Refill Your Cup: Resilience, Energy, Motivation, & Connection with Dr. Hamilton, a virtual event featuring LCC President Margaret Hamilton. In February, we held a Palentine's Leadership Panel and heard from several of our female deans and directors on campus. Resilient Leadership: Women at Work was held in March as our Women’s History Month event, where a panel of women leaders in Lane County shared their stories. All virtual events were well attended. The LCC AAWCC board is planning another leadership panel for Earth Day with leaders whose positions oversee sustainability efforts. In addition to these events, LCC's chapter has created a Slack channel just for AAWCC communications.

LCC Resilient Women.jpg
Palentine_s Day.png

AAWCC Board of Directors

President - Donna Lewelling

Past President - Lynn Irvin

President Elect - Teri Olsen

VP Fall Conference - Adrienne Ochs

VP Summer Conference - Amber Fultz

VP Finance - Lisa Fletcher-Gordon

VP Records - Lauren Smith

VP Communications - Donna Zmolek

VP OILD - Sydney Frost

VP Membership and Registration -

Kristina Holton

VP Web Development - Lydia Rediske

VP Special Projects - Vacant

National AAWCC Representative -

Cherie Maas-Anderson

President Emerita - Karen Magnuson

Ex Oficio Members -

Cam Preus, Mary Spilde


The AAWCC Oregon Fall Conference will be held November 18 & 19, 2021

More information coming soon!

Oregon AAWCC is an organization developed by Oregon women in community colleges for anyone who supports the mission of Oregon AAWCC: To inspire, champion, and celebrate the talents within each of us.

Visit our Website