Each day members of our community quietly celebrate milestones, achievements and accomplishments—big and small. This department highlights these triumphs for the community.
If you’re sending a submission, include all details that apply: individuals’ names, details of the milestone and a contact name and phone number. If you have photos, send them. The submission deadline for the August issue is Sunday, July 15. For best results, e-mail email@example.com or mail submissions to 3510 N.E. 134th Ave., Portland, OR 97230. Call 503-287-8904.
Taylors celebrate 50 years
Pastor William “Bill” and Mary Taylor were married June 22, 1968, at the First Presbyterian Church of El Paso, Texas. Bill was serving First Presbyterian Church as a seminary intern in Christian education, and Mary was an Army nurse stationed at William Beaumont General Hospital. They met in the church choir and dated for five months before getting engaged. The engagement came as a surprise to friends and family, as the couple had kept their courtship a secret.
After a month-long honeymoon road trip, the couple settled in Dubuque, Iowa, where Bill completed divinity school at the University of Dubuque Theological Seminary, earning his Master of Divinity in 1969. He was ordained in the Presbyterian Church that same year.
Bill’s postings took the young couple first to Waterloo, Iowa, then on to Longview and Aberdeen/Hoquiam, Washington.
Mary continued her nursing career along the way. Son Brian was born in Waterloo, and twins Julie and Jill were born in Longview.
The family moved to Portland in 1975 when Bill became pastor at Eastminster Presbyterian Church (now Parkrose Community United Church of Christ) on Northeast Halsey at 125th Avenue. He served there until 2006 while also serving Roseway Presbyterian Church.
Mary continued her studies at Oregon Health Sciences University and worked in area nursing homes. She was active in choir, bell choir and Presbyterian Women, and she was ordained a deacon and then an elder at Eastminster. She was also a Girl Scout leader for her daughters. Bill was a Boy Scout leader.
Bill was on the SnowCap Community Charites board and the Cascade Pacific Council of BSA Protestant Committee and was active in the Gateway Area Business Association. He also coached and refereed youth soccer.
The couple traveled to the Middle East, Turkey, Greece, Germany, Austria, Switzerland and the Caribbean. They now reside in Happy Valley on Mt. Scott looking out on Mt. Hood.
Asked why their marriage lasted for 50 years, they responded, “Our faith in God and each other. Remembering and honoring each other and giving each other room to grow and be individuals while remaining one.”
David Douglas again honored for music ed
The David Douglas School District has been honored with the Best Communities for Music Education designation from The NAMM Foundation for its outstanding commitment to music education—again.
This is the ninth time the district has received this prestigious national recognition of its music program. It is one of only two districts in Oregon, and one of only five in the Pacific Northwest, to receive the award.
The Best Communities for Music Education designation is awarded to districts that demonstrate outstanding achievement in efforts to provide music access and education to all students. To qualify for the Best Communities designation, detailed questions about funding, graduation requirements, music class participation, instruction time, facilities, support for the music program and community music-making programs were answered. Responses were verified with school officials and reviewed by The Music Research Institute at the University of Kansas.
David Douglas has a long, proud history of music education. It is among the few districts to provide full-time music teachers at the elementary level, giving every elementary student exposure to early music education. Nearly 2,300 David Douglas middle and high school students participate in its robust choir, band and orchestra programs at the secondary levels, and that doesn’t include the dozens of advanced fifth graders who have the opportunity to perform at the middle school level.
This award recognizes that David Douglas is leading the way with learning opportunities outlined in the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). ESSA recommends music and the arts as important elements of a well-rounded education for all children.
Portland Christian celebrates retirees
Grant provides bridge to college for vulnerable students
Mt. Hood Community College (MHCC) recently received a $75,000 grant through the Gateway to College National Network to implement PDX Bridge, a Portland-area program focused on connecting East County juvenile justice, foster and homeless youth to post-secondary educational opportunities. The two-year grant was funded by the Meyer Memorial Trust.
PDX Bridge provides students from vulnerable populations with a bridge from high school through the completion of their first year of college. Through the program, high school students can access peer mentorship and college readiness/dual-enrollment classes. Once they finish high school, they will receive college success coaching at MHCC. Additionally, Worksystems’ SummerWorks initiative will offer summer internship opportunities to these students.
The PDX Bridge program was piloted at Portland Community College in 2017. An initial cohort of 25 students will begin at MHCC by taking classes in writing and human development.
As part of the grant program, MHCC hired a student success coach who will guide, advise and connect the students to resources and support and encourage them through their first year of college and beyond.
According to Children First of Oregon’s 2015 report, there are 3,066 children in foster care, 5,798 homeless children and 3,366 adjudicated youth in the Portland area. Nationally, only 10 percent of foster youth enroll in post-secondary education, and only 3 percent obtain a post-secondary credential, compared to 40 percent of their peers.
You can learn more about the PDX Bridge program at gatewaytocollege.org/pdx-bridge.html.