11-29-2020  5:55 pm   •   PDX and SEA Weather
MLK Breakfast 2021 Save the Date
The Skanner News Champagne Toast
Donovan M. Smith and Arashi Young
Published: 12 November 2015

Champagne flutes were held high in a gold and maroon-bedecked room. Glasses clinked against each other as politicians, community organizers and loyal readers toasted The Skanner News.

This publication hosted a champagne toast to celebrate 40 years of serving the Portland community and the greater Northwest. From the very first editorial, published Oct. 7, 1975, The Skanner News set out to shake up the status quo, hold the establishment accountable and become a community resource for its readers.

Portland Mayor Charlie Hales delivered a short address to the packed audience. He said in many ways, the objective of The Skanner is as true today as it was in 1975. Hales said he appreciated the paper’s push against inequality and calls for City Hall to make Portland a city of opportunity for all.

“The role of The Skanner in speaking truth to power is always needed,” Hales said.

Scroll through the slideshow below for photos from the event: 

Grace Stratton, a field representative for Sen. Ron Wyden delivered a Congressional record on behalf of the senator. The document is an official record of the proceedings of the United States Congress which informs President Obama of The Skanner’s 40th anniversary. To view the Congressional record, click here.

Copies of the recently published 40th anniversary commemorative edition were laid out on tables for guests to thumb through. The edition chronicled local community leaders, businesses and events that touched the community over the last 40 decades, through photos and reflective editorials penned by former Skanner editors, Helen Silvis and Lisa Loving.

Attendees said the record of the paper helped them see the story of Black Portland in a larger context. Community organizer Lakeitha Elliott said the written history in the paper was exciting.

“It's a place where I can go for the history before I was born and from when I was young. I can look back and see stuff from when I was a kid and remember those things that I might not have remembered and be able to see them in print and understand the history,” Elliott said.

Elliott is planning on keeping a copy of the special edition and other older The Skanner newspapers to share with her daughter in the future.

Charles McGee, president of The Black Parent Initiative, said the paper has a pivotal role within the community helping new residents understand Portland’s relationship with the Black Community. McGee mentioned reading The Skanner with his wife, who isn’t native to Portland.

“One of the most amazing things has been reading The Skanner newspaper to just get integrated into the community,” McGee said. “I think for a lot of Black transplants, The Skanner newspaper is the place and the way that they find out and get connected.”

Oakland, Calif., transplant Chris Fuzelll said the paper has been integral in informing him on his quest to learn more about the history of African Americans in both the city of Portland and the state of Oregon, respectively.

Cindi Fischer, who has done work as a mental health advocate up and down the Northwest, commended The Skanner for spreading the voice of African Americans not just to other African Americans, but to the wider community as well.

“We’re a part of them, and they’re apart of us,” Fischer said. “We’re the canary in the coal mine. To have an independent voice for African Americans [in the media] is essential to our survival, and our ability to move into thriving as a people in our community.” 

The mood of the evening was excited and jubilant, with many community members reveling in both the past and expressing their hopes for the future. McGee said he dove into the 40th anniversary edition and he looks forward to reading the next 40 years.  

“It’s phenomenal. It’s just amazing, honestly and 40 more years of The Skanner newspaper is going to be amazing,” he said.

Recently Published by The Skanner News

  • Default
  • Title
  • Date
  • Random
  • Wisconsin recount of its presidential results on Sunday, confirmed that Democrat Joe Biden won the state by more than 20,600 votes...   MADISON, Wis. (AP) — Wisconsin finished a recount of its presidential results on Sunday, confirming Democrat Joe Biden's victory over President Donald Trump in the key battleground state. Trump vowed to challenge the outcome in court even before the recount concluded. Dane County was the second and last county to finish its recount, reporting a 45-vote gain for Trump. Milwaukee County, the state's other big and overwhelmingly liberal county targeted in a recount that Trump paid for, reported its results Friday, a 132-vote gain for Biden. Taken together, the two counties barely budged Biden's winning margin of about 20,600 votes.  “As we have said, the recount only served to reaffirm Joe Biden’s victory in Wisconsin," Danielle Melfi, who led Biden's campaign in Wisconsin, said in a statement to The Associated Press. Trump tweets he will sue With no precedent for overturning a result as large as Biden's, Trump was widely expected to head to court once the recount was finished. His campaign challenged thousands of absentee ballots during the recount, and even before it was complete, Trump tweeted that he would sue. “The Wisconsin recount is not about finding mistakes in the count, it is about finding people who have voted illegally, and that case will be brought after the recount is over, on Monday or Tuesday,” Trump tweeted on Saturday. “We have found many illegal votes. Stay tuned!” Trump campaign officials didn't immediately respond to AP requests for comment on Sunday. The deadline to certify the vote is Tuesday. Certification is done by the Democratic chair of the Wisconsin Election Commission, which is bipartisan.  Drop boxes "illegal" suit says The Wisconsin Voters Alliance, a conservative group, has already filed a lawsuit against state election officials seeking to block certification of the results. It makes many of the claims Trump is expected to make. Gov. Tony Evers’ attorneys have asked the state Supreme Court to dismiss the suit. Evers, a Democrat, said the complaint is a “mishmash of legal distortions” that uses factual misrepresentations in an attempt to take voting rights away from millions of Wisconsin residents.  Another suit filed over the weekend by Wisconsin resident Dean Mueller argues that ballots placed in drop boxes are illegal and must not be counted. Trump lawsuits have failed Trump’s attorneys have complained about absentee ballots where voters identified themselves as “indefinitely confined,” allowing them to cast an absentee ballot without showing a photo ID; ballots that have a certification envelope with two different ink colors, indicating a poll worker may have helped complete it; and absentee ballots that don’t have a separate written record for its request, such as in-person absentee ballots. Election officials in the two counties counted those ballots during the recount, but marked them as exhibits at the request of the Trump campaign.  Trump’s campaign has already failed elsewhere in court without proof of widespread fraud, which experts widely agree doesn’t exist. Trump legal challenges have failed in Arizona, Georgia, Michigan, Nevada and Pennsylvania.
    Read More
  • Pennsylvania justices also remarked on the lawsuit's staggering demand that an entire election be overturned retroactively. “They have failed to allege that even a single mail-in ballot was fraudulently cast or counted,” Justice David Wecht wrote in a concurring opinion
    Read More
  • The number of COVID-19 related hospitalizations also continues to surge with 529 people hospitalized — a 209% increase since the start of the month
    Read More
  • Of the 33,035 vehicle stops Portland police made in 2019, 18% were for Black drivers and 65% were for white drivers. White people make up 75.1% of the population, while Black people make up 5.8%
    Read More
  • Oregon wholesale tree farmers and small cut-your-own lots are reporting strong demand and seeing more people earlier than ever
    Read More
  • The police bureau uses a complicated methodology in reporting data
    Read More
  • Groups representing Oregon foodservice and lodging businesses had asked the judge to modify the governor’s order
    Read More
OHA Safe Strong final

Photo Gallery

Photos and slide shows of local events