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Stream Our Think & Drink with Cheryl Strayed

On October 23, 2014, author Cheryl Strayed joined Adam Davis, executive director of Oregon Humanities, at the Alberta Rose Theatre in Portland for a conversation about the experience of having her private life become public through a best-selling book and major motion picture. Click here to watch a video of the event.

Cheryl Strayed is the author of the memoir Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail, the novel Torch, and the essay collection Tiny Beautiful Things: Advice on Love and Life from Dear Sugar. Wild has stayed on The New York Times Best Seller List for more than a year, and a film adaptation starring Reese Witherspoon will be released in December. Strayed will discuss the experience of having her private life become public through a best-selling book and major motion picture.

The 2014 Think & Drink series is supported by our media sponsors, Oregon Public Broadcasting and Willamette Week, and funding from Columbia Bank and the Oregon Cultural Trust: Oregonians investing in Oregon’s arts, heritage, and humanities.

2015 Public Program Grant Guidelines Available

Letters of interest postmark deadline October 31, 2014

In 2014, Oregon Humanities Public Program Grants funded programs that examined the effects of tribal termination, investigated the history of the Oregon railways, and explored the experience of black tradeswomen, among others.

Grantees include libraries, community colleges, historical societies, civic groups, and other nonprofits working not only in humanities fields like history, philosophy, or literature, but also in the areas of the arts, public policy, and natural resources. While the formats and topics of the public programs we fund may vary, all share a goal of connecting Oregonians to ideas and providing them with opportunities to learn about and discuss historical, cultural, and political issues.

Oregon Humanities is pleased to announce the guidelines for 2015 Public Program Grants. Oregon Humanities’ vision is of an Oregon that invites diverse perspectives, explores challenging questions, and strives for just communities. We fund public programs that help us move toward our vision.

Once a year, Oregon Humanities’ volunteer board of directors awards Public Program Grants between $1,000 and $10,000 to nonprofit organizations across Oregon’s thirty-six counties to support programs that make use of the humanities as tools that help us make meaning in our world, connect us to each other, and strive for just communities. We are particularly interested in public programs that bring together diverse groups of Oregonians and reflect collaboration between organizations within a community, including public/private partnerships.

Programs must begin after April 1, 2015. Letters of Interest must be submitted by October 31, 2014. Sample successful proposals are available for download below.

Please download and review Oregon Humanities Grants Guidelines for more information. To apply, please complete our online letter of interest form.

Oregon Humanities presented a webinar on writing strong letters of interest for Public Program Grants October 2. Click here to view a recording of the webinar.

If you have questions, please contact Director of Programs Jennifer Allen at (503) 241-0543 or (800) 735-0543, ext. 118, or .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

Ways to Work with Oregon Humanities

In addition to our program offerings, Oregon Humanities offers other resources and customizable program formats for organizations looking to explore challenging questions and foster connections between people in their organization or community. 

Here are some of the ways we can work together. If you want to learn more, fill out the form below and we’ll get in touch with you.

Workplace Programs
Our staff leads workplace programs on a fee-for-service basis. Designed both for nonprofit and for-profit environments, these programs often happen during the work day and can involve full organizations or smaller teams. They can be continuing education opportunities or help with team building by sparking new ways of thinking and working together.

Facilitation Training
Our staff has many years of experience training people to plan, convene, and lead a wide range of public discussion programs, and can help your organization, educational institution, or community develop skills in these areas.

Communications Partnerships
We work with organizations whose programming supports our mission and connects us to new audiences. We offer these communications partnerships, which include marketing, outreach, and public relations support, to organizations that do not have a pending or current Public Program Grant from Oregon Humanities.

Collaborative Programs
We offer public programs in collaboration with partner organizations in order to explore new topics and serve new and shared audiences. For these programs, each partner organization contributes specific planning and marketing resources.

Facilitated Roundtable Discussions
Our staff leads roundtable discussions primarily on a fee-for-service basis and on a variety of topics for public audiences or specific groups. We are happy to design customized single programs or series based on your interests and community.

If any of these options are of interest to you, please take a couple of minutes to complete our online inquiry form.


Oregon Humanities connects Oregonians with ideas that change lives and transform communities. Oregon Humanities programs, events, grants, and publications encourage Oregonians to learn about and discuss social, cultural, and public issues.

    Conversation Project offers Oregon nonprofits free programs that engage community members in thoughtful, challenging conversations about ideas critical to our daily lives and our state’s future.
    Humanity in Perspective (HIP) is a college-level humanities course offered in Portland. HIP provides economically and educationally disadvantaged individuals the opportunity to study the humanities with the guidance of Reed College professors.
    Idea Lab is a summer institute for Oregon teens and teachers who use the humanities to consider the pursuit of happiness and how it shapes our culture.

    Oregon Humanities magazine is a triannual publication devoted to exploring important and timely topics from a variety of perspectives and to stimulating reflection and public conversation.
    Public Program Grants provide financial support for nonprofit organizations across Oregon to conceive and implement public humanities programs.

    Think & Drink is a happy-hour conversation series that brings Portlanders together to discuss provocative ideas.

Oregon Humanities also convenes reading and discussion groups, hosts panel presentations on topics of public relevance and concern, and partners with community organizations on special projects.