Emerge, the national group that trains Democratic women to run for office, will be graduating their first class in Oregon on Oct. 3.
Executive Director Kathryn Firestone says the group is a good representation of "passions, religion, and race."
On Oct. 15, Emerge is holding a meeting at the Urban League of Portland from 6 to 8 p.m. to discuss the upcoming 2010 mentorship class, scheduled to start in February 2010. The class is targeted to women living in Northeast Portland. Firestone hopes to talk about the issues minority women face when running for office. When state Sen. Margaret Carter, the first African American woman elected to the legislature, resigned, there were not a large number of minority women candidates ready to take her place. Firestone hopes that her mentorship classes can change that.
Advisory board member Cyreena Boston said she wants the newly founded Emerge Oregon to be a real partner in Oregon's African American community.
"I want to establish relationships in the African American community based on trust," she said.
Visit Emerge online for information about their program at http://emergeor.org.