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By The Skanner News | The Skanner News
Published: 09 May 2023

Oregon Community Foundation (OCF) is seeking proposals to identify the new owner of Portland’s Albina Arts Center. The center’s new owner will be chosen through a Request for Proposals issued by OCF on May 9, 2023, following a year-long community visioning process to develop a future vision for the Albina Arts Center.

“Oregon Community Foundation has conducted quite a robust, inclusive and equitable community outreach process. Deliberate efforts were employed to engage and solicit critical input from key Black leaders, respected Black elders and Black community members,” said Karis Stoudamire-Phillips. Stoudamire-Phillips serves as volunteer leader on the steering committee that architected the process for visioning the future Albina Arts Center. “The genuine hope, the insights and the vision – brought forward by gathering and listening to Black community leaders and organizations will undoubtedly yield a very positive outcome for the historic Albina community. This highly collaborative process now begins to pave the way for generations both today and for decades to come.”

albina arts center historic photo ocf fullAlbina Arts Center historic photo courtesy of Oregon Community Foundation
For six decades, the Albina Arts Center has been an important hub for arts, community events and social gatherings for Portland’s Black community. Located in the historic Albina neighborhood, the center was created to provide space for the development of cultural and intellectual resources.

“There is much hope and expectation for the future of this land and building,” said Ms. Joyce Harris, community leader and educator. Harris is among dozens of key leaders that have been engaging in the visioning process for the Albina Arts Center.

“This building can both honor a legacy while pushing for a future at the intersection of the arts and Black culture.”

The Albina Arts Center Visioning Committee developed a set of criteria that they would like to see reflected in the future center:

  • Black-led
  • Serves the Black Community
  • Centers Black arts (various branches of creative activity, such as painting, sculpture, music, literature, and dance, etc.)
  • Committed to creating a safe and healing space
  • Committed to revitalizing, activating, and potentially expanding the building

Key Dates

  • Virtual Q & A: May 18, 9:30 a.m. PST
  • Deadline for submission: June 23, 4:00 p.m. PST
  • Announcement of award: August 7

The RFP phase of this process is expected to conclude in Summer 2023 with the announcement of a new nonprofit owner.

A selection committee comprised of local Portland representatives - business and nonprofit leaders, artists, civic and cultural leaders, elders from the Black community – will review applicants and submit a recommendation to Oregon Community Foundation.

For more information, visit: https://oregoncf.org/albina-arts-center-conversation. Questions or comments can be emailed to: [email protected].

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