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Oliveros recognized as top-100 Filipina
Photos and Story by James Hill
Claire Oliveros, a second generation Filipina American born and raised in Portland, received an award highlighting her as one of the 100 Most Influential Filipinas in the U.S. Oliveros accepted the award at a gala dinner during the Fifth Annual Filipina Women’s Network Summit in Washington D.C. in October.
Oliveros, coordinator of Portland Community College’s Sylvania Campus Multicultural Center, was nominated by Carmen Caballero Rubio, director of Community Affairs for the Office of Portland Mayor Tom Potter. Oliveros’s honor is in the category of “Emerging Leaders and Builders.”
“Claire is a thoughtful, intelligent and progressive woman of strong character,” said Rubio. “She works tirelessly and passionately to raise awareness around issues impacting women of color and the Filipino community. She is a strong ally to other communities who face similar human rights violations and forms of oppression.”
As the first in her family to attend college, Oliveros received her bachelor’s degree in speech communication from Western Oregon University, master’s degree in education from Portland State University and is currently completing her doctorate in education with an emphasis in community college leadership at Oregon State University.
“I greatly appreciate the recognition and am honored to accept this award on behalf of the Filipino community and Portland Community College,” Oliveros said. “My motivation is in service to the people. I appreciate the opportunity to join other Filipina women in an effort to raise awareness of critical leadership issues, especially the ever-worsening human rights violations in the Philippines under President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo.”
For more than a decade, Oliveros has provided leadership and direction for programs and services for Filipinos, Filipino Americans, and students of color as the coordinator of the Multicultural Center. Since 1997, Claire has led community and campus efforts to link theory and practice through leadership development, political education, and organizing among youth, students, and allies to address systems of oppression and work for social change.
In 2005, she returned from an international human rights fact-finding mission in Hacienda Luisita, Philippines organized by BAYAN USA, the only international chapter of Bagong Alyansang Makabayan (BAYAN-Philippines), and formed the Portland Committee for Human Rights in the Philippines to raise awareness of the ever-worsening human rights violations, and mobilize support for the international campaign to “Stop the Killings in the Philippines.” Oliveros also helped establish the Asian Pacific American Compass Radio Collective, the only APA News and Public Affairs show in the Pacific Northwest on KBOO 90.7 FM Community Radio.
The Fifth Annual Filipina Women’s Summit and Awards Gala will bring together Filipina women leaders from various sectors of the community including the military, government, non-profit organizations, higher education and community-based organizations around the United States. For more information about the Fifth Annual Filipina Women’s Summit visit the website at http://www.ffwn.org.
“The Summit is an opportunity to share critical information about the strong and growing international solidarity movement to raise awareness of the human rights violations in the Philippines and hold governments accountable for the worsening conditions,” Oliveros said.
Portland Community College is the largest post-secondary institution in Oregon, serving approximately 88,200 full- and part-time students. For more PCC news, please visit us on the Web at www.pcc.edu/news. PCC has three comprehensive campuses, five workforce training and education centers, and 200 community locations in the Portland metropolitan area. The PCC district encompasses a 1,500-square-mile area in northwest Oregon and offers two-year degrees, one-year certificate programs, short-term training, alternative education, pre-college courses and life-long learning.