ICYMI: Of Optimism and Listening Well

Former Meyer trustee Judge Darleen Ortega penned an essay for the Summer 2016 edition of Oregon Women Lawyers' Advance Sheet.

Darleen delves into the challenges of identifying as a member of marginalized groups but being further marginalized when the subject turns to diversity.

Here's a nugget from her essay, Of Optimism and Listening Well:

Recently at a legal event, I ended up in a conversation about diversity efforts that were being undertaken by various bar organizations. You might think I entered the conversation because my input was being sought; after all, I identify as a member of some marginalized groups (Latina, woman), and have been deeply engaged in equity, diversity, and inclusion work for many years. As the work was discussed, I began to be concerned about the lack of input from members of the marginalized groups that the work purported to serve. Since my input actually wasn’t being sought, I inquired as to how members of those marginalized groups were being included in formulating and administering the efforts. The answer that I got back was that the white male speaker was only aware of other white and mostly male participants. But without missing a beat, he assured me that, given who was in charge, he was “optimistic.”

You can download Darleen's essay, and also check out Judge Adrienne Nelson's essay on the Black experience in Oregon, here.