We were first connected to Planned Parenthood Columbia Willamette (PPCW) by Sita Symonette, their first African American and LGBTQ Board Chair in the organization’s 57-year history. Under Sita’s leadership the PPCW board grew into a diverse, equity-focused group.

To learn more about Sita’s leadership read the Northwest Health Foundation’s Profile of her in their “Your Voice Matters. Speak Out.” series.

“As an African American queer woman, I am proud of the critical role that Planned Parenthood Columbia Willamette plays in reducing healthcare disparities in our region. The Board of Directors is committed to integrating equity and inclusion so that PPCW can better meet the needs of the diverse communities we serve,” said Sita.

Following and in collaboration with Sita’s leadership, Anne Udall, PPCW President and CEO, is applying LJIST’s healing frameworks for racial justice and equity with the PPCW leadership team. PPCW is committed to identify and enact new ways to partner with and serve the diverse population of Oregon and Southwest Washington with equity and inclusion at the heart of their decision making.

LJIST is supporting PPCW’s Board of Directors and Executive Committee with on-going consultation, coaching, and training. Last fall our team facilitated a Historical Journey session for the Board of Directors and Executive Committee and several Board and staff leaders have participated in our signature Transformational Communication Program and Transformational Leadership Program.

Of our work together, Anne said, “The LJIST framework, training, and coaching has been a transformational experience for me. I have tools that allow me to reflect on my own behavior, my biases, and the way I unknowingly perpetuate racism and other ‘isms’ in my professional and personal life. And beyond recognizing this behavior, I have useful tools and strategies to change my behavior. The work allows me to move beyond my own guilt and shame (never helpful and always damaging) to contribute to a world I want to live in.”

Lisa Gardner, Planned Parenthood of Southwestern Oregon (PPSO) President and CEO, has also participated in our Transformational Communication Program and LJIST coaching programs. Together, Lisa and Anne are teaming up to offer the Transformational Communication Program for their respective Executive Committees, colleagues at other Planned Parenthood affiliates, as well as the Planned Parenthood Federation of America (PPFA). A few spaces are also available to the LJIST community! For more information please contact Ilana Uemura at info@ljist.com.

PPCW is the largest non-profit family planning and reproductive rights organization in Oregon and Southwest Washington. They are dedicated to providing expert sexual and reproductive health care to people in Oregon and Southwest Washington by:

  • Offering a broad range of sexual and reproductive health care, family planning, and other medical services
  • Training and educating community members on issues of sexuality
  • Advocating for the protection of reproductive rights and freedom in Oregon and Southwest Washington.

PPCW serves 73,000 of our neighbors (our offices are less than 2.5 miles apart!) annually. Eighty percent of patients are low-income, and 63% are young adults. PPCW also supports more than 10,000 youth and families in their education programs each year. LJIST is honored to partner with an organization committed to making quality healthcare affordable, accessible, equitable and inclusive!