Last updated: October 15, 2021

RCE Greater Portland

Photo Credit: RCE Greater Portland
Rce details
United States of America
Date of RCE acknowledgement:
December, 2013
Description of RCE and Geographic Region:

RCE Greater Portland is a multi-sector network of educators, students, non-profits, political and industry leaders, organisations, and community members collaborating to promote sustainability education in the Portland Metro region, including Clackamas, Multnomah, and Washington Counties, in Oregon, and Clark County in Washington.

Goals and Objectives:


RCE Greater Portland envisions a healthy, just, and thriving region where education for sustainability is prioritised and integrated across sectors; and where everyone has opportunities to shape a sustainable future. 

Goals and objectives:

Goal 1.  Continuously build and maintain a vibrant and diverse regional cross-sector network of individuals and organisations advancing education for sustainability together
Objective A. Establish partnerships that facilitate inclusive and culturally diverse participation and collaboration across sectors and organisations
Objective B. Convene events where everyone is welcome to discuss and share ideas related to ESD and social equity issues
Objective C. Share research and innovative practices in ESD to promote partnerships, learning, whole institution approaches, and advancements across the region and beyond

Goal 2.  Identify and secure funding sources to support resource development and operations to achieve the mission of GPSEN/RCE Greater Portland
Objective A. Board works with Governance Committee to identify priorities and opportunities for funding
Objective B. Determine staff capacity needed to meet operational needs
Objective C. Establish succession plan for Board Executives and Committee Chairs

Goal 3.  Advance the development of lifelong sustainability learning opportunities in formal, non-formal, and informal education, training, and public awareness
Objective A. Develop and provide access to an array of ESD information and resources through online platforms
Objective B. Create and promote ESD curricula and programs that meet the needs and skill sets of a diverse audience
Objective C. Create and support opportunities for ESD capacity-building and workforce development

Goal 4.  Increase public awareness about regional and international sustainability issues and the role of ESD in shaping a healthy, just, and thriving future
Objective A. Develop and implement marketing plan that raises public awareness and increases involvement in ESD
Objective B. Create opportunities for public dialogue on regional ESD policies and issues
Objective C. Develop marketing and programs on international ESD policies and issues

Goal 5. Support capacity building to develop global citizens who will steward our region for current and future generations and foster trust and healthy relationships in communities
Objective A. Offer leadership development and engagement opportunities for GPSEN leaders and partners
Objective B. Create and promote ESD service-learning and volunteer projects
Objective C. Support networks that empower and mobilise youth to engage in their communities

Organisation Hosting RCE Secretariat:

Greater Portland Sustainability Education Network (GPSEN)

Key Partners:

Name of organisation: Portland State University
Role: Higher Education Co-host, College Network Coordinator and Board Vice-President
Contact name: Serena Dressel
Contact email:

Name of organisation: Portland Community College
Role: Higher Education Co-host and Programs & Events Team
Contact name: Jade Menchaca
Contact email:

Name of organisation:
Role: Non-profit Co-host
Contact name: Liz Zavodsky
Contact email:

Current Activities:
  • Sustainability Curriculum Development
  • Virtual Bridge for the COP (UNFCCC)
  • Bridging for Sustainabilty Events
  • Sustainability Trivia
  • New website development
  • Networking Social event planning
  • EcoChallenge
  • Sustainability Symposium planning
  • Youth Network Climate Awareness Panel series in Higher Ed Schools
  • Newsletter and Community Outreach
Upcoming Activities:
  • Virtual Bridge for the COP (UNFCCC) 
  • Sustainability Symposium 
  • Bridging for Sustainabilty Events 
  • Sustainability Trivia
  • UN Day and International Peace Day with UNA Portland, on Human Rights
  • EarthWeek
  • Sustainability Research-Policy-Practice Meetups
  • Equity Training of the Board of Directors
  • 'SDGS, Equity and Inclusion' presentation
  • Environmental Justice Train-the-Trainer Workshop for College Network
  • Regional Faculty Training
  • 2020, May: Virtual Symposium Series. Arts and Activism. Does Art Matter, a reflection.
  • 2020, onwards: Bridging for Sustainability
  • 2020, April.Virtual Sustainability Symposium. A call for Action. . Community Dialogue_Pulse from Our Participants
  • 2019 December: Virtual Bridge for COP25 and the Talanoa Dialogue Report.
  • 2019, December: IAP2 Grant for "advancing social and racial equity by supporting and elevating public involvement" through the  Bridging for Sustainabilty- Community Stakeholder Enagement Meetings.
  • 2019, onwards: Trivia events
  • 2019, September: International Peace Day with UNU and Hostelling International, Portland,  Dedication of Peace Poles at Hawthorne St Hostelling International.September 2019.
  • 2019, December. GPSEN Strategic Plan 2019-2022 lauched  GPSEN Strategic Plan is here.
  • 2019 June 05..World Environment Day,with GPSEN and Chinese Gardens, Portland, OR.  
  • 2019, May. Environmental Justice Workshop by Kevin Thomas, PCC Sylvania Campus..
  • 2019, March. Sustainability Symposum - Building Bridges to Sustainabilty  
  • 2019, April. RCE Americas Youth Network Virtual Conference,  Paper Presentation 'A Regional Perspective on Sustainability and Climate': Portland, OR, USA, By Medha Gautham
  • 2018, October. Presentation on climate change and biodiversity by Neeraja Havaliai, at the 7th RCE Americas on ESD, Conservation and Climate Change in 2030 Agenda. Posadas, Misiones, Argentina, October 25-27th, 2018..7th RCE Americas Report by Neeraja Havaligi
  • 2018. Signatory, We Are Still In,  
  • UN Day, with UNA Portland
  • Think Tank Art Gallery Talk
  • 2018, July. Board Member Orientation
  • 2018. Launching of new GPSEN website, geared toward creating a clearing house database and networking space for the region on sustainability education, research, innovations, challenges and lessons.
  • 2018, March: GPSEN ED Lin Harmon-Walker and Neeraja Havaligi were panelists at GirlFest 2018 with other regional experts, highlighting relevance of Sustainable Development and the SDGs, with Girl Scouts of Oregon and Southwest Washington.
  • 2018, April: Board Member Kim Smith presented “The Power of Higher Education in Achieving a Sustainable Future.” China-US Green Education Innovation Development Workshop and 100-100 Plan Annual Conference, Wanzhou, China.
  • April 2018: Board Member David Macek and GPSEN Fellow Neeraja Havaligi  were part of  the Earth Week Panel Discussion titled ‘Saving the Earth, Bite by Bite - Earth Week Panel Discussion’, hosted by PSU Veg Education Group and Factory Farming Awareness Coalition (FFAC).
  • May, 2018: GPSEN’s participation  at SSC Leadership Fellows Panel with focus on the SDGs, equity and gentrification. Board Member David Macek, Lin Harmon-Walker (ED) and Neeraja Havaligi (Fellow) were on this panel.
  • 2018, June: Board Member Kim Smith, and partner Melia Tichenor published “The Value of Service-learning in Addressing Community Problems,” in Academia and Communities: Engaging for Change, United Nations University, Tokyo, Japan.
  • 2018, July: Dr. Zahra Golshani, GPSEN Fellow, completed her research on “Minorities Participation In River Health Stewardship: The Case of Muslims, Iranians and Afghan Communities of Clackamas County” and published her work, with grant funding.
  • 2018, January: GPSEN’s  ED Lin Harmon-Walker and GPSEN Fellow Neeraja Havaligi presented at GlobalPDX Seminar on 'Achieving the SDGs conversations: How the Sustainable Development Goals came to be' at MercyCorps Action Center, Portland, OR, USA.
  • 2017 - ongoing: Board Members LeRoy Patton and Neeraja Havaligi trained in Equity and Inclusion through partner program with Intertwine Alliance. LeRoy and Neeraja are engaged in transfer of knowledge from their training to the GPSEN board and are developing a module for adaptive and continued learning on Equity and Inclusion for the Sustainable Development Goals.
  • 2017, July: GPSEN Fellow  Neeraja Havaligi, presented her research on Portland and Seattle Community Gardens at the 38th National Conference held by the American Community Garden  Association at Hartford, CT, USA, July 2017.
  • 2017, October: Board Member Kim Smith presented “Gaining Hope and Resilience During Troubling Times.” AASHE Conference Workshop, San Antonio, TX, USA.
  • 2017, November: Board Members Briar Schoon and Frank Granshaw attended COP23, in Bonn, Germany.
  • 2017, December: Board Member Kim Smith presented “RCE Greater Portland’s Facing Climate Change: A Train-the-Trainer Workshop.” Global RCE Conference, Okayama, Japan.
Communication Channels
RCE Website:
Twitter handle:
Contact Details
Main RCE Contact:
Jonathan Ostar
Secondary RCE Contact:
Kim Smith
RCE Youth Coordinator(s):
Serena Dressel
General RCE email:
RCE mailing address for correspondence:
3558 SE Hawthorne Blvd, Suite 2
Portland, OR 97214, USA