Power Breakfast recap: People for Portland co-founders on solutions, accountability and transparency
Roughly 300 people gathered at the Sentinel Hotel in Portland Thursday morning for a conversation with People for Portland co-founders Dan Lavey and Kevin Looper.
Lavey, founder of Gallatin Public Affairs, and Looper, founder of the strategy and communications firm Wheelhouse Northwest, have often operated on opposing sides of the political divide. Lavey has often consulted with Republicans, Looper with Democrats.
The two came together in August to launch People for Portland, a 501(c)(4) nonprofit social welfare organization, with a stated goal of demanding “greater urgency and bolder action from our elected officials” on issues including homelessness, public safety and trash cleanup.
Their appearance, part of the Business Journal’s Power Breakfast series, came one day after a scathing guest column in the Oregonian called People for Portland “a fear-mongering effort harnessing anger and hate and directing it towards some of the most vulnerable residents of our city.” The column was written by Angela Uherbelau, founder of Oregon Kids Read, Sharon Joy Gary-Smith, president of the Portland NAACP and Oregon Rep. Andrea Valderrama. People for Portland has also been criticized for not publicly identifying donors.
Here are some key takeaways from the conversation, which was moderated by PBJ Publisher Candace Beeke.