2021 Oregon Legislative Session
Passed HB3010, HB3244, & SB43 related to the state's media production incentives
OREGON CREATES TOGETHER
How I helped 3 bills become laws in 2021 (& fulfilled my dream of becoming Elle Woods)
As Communications Manager for the Oregon Media Production Association, I worked closely with local on various creative-industry advocacy campaigns. Some of our biggest accomplishments were driving successful tax credit auctions, enhancing the film incentive program, enacting production protocols for COVID-19, and establishing permanent funding for the Portland Film Office (which was nearly eliminated in 2020).
I played a key role in crafting the communications that called our members to participate in our advocacy work; building the online systems for them to engage; and keeping the community informed of our progress.
In mid-2020, the organization began fundraising for general donations for the first time. (I will spare you those web development details here.) The traditional split for 35 years was roughly 50% membership, 30% advertising, 20% sponsorship. Many people see membership as transactional, so building an emotional connection was vital. Especially during such extraordinarily difficult times for the majority of people we serve.
OMPA's old 1-liner was total word-vomit: "advocate, connect, promote." Even the staff, board members, and volunteers regurgitating it struggled to put that into clearer terms. #OregonCreates was born out of a community brainstorm in late 2020 when we were planning for our Annual Showcase & Awards (held in late January.) I helped brand "Oregon creates together" for OMPA and popularize it into our new slogan.
Put your profits where your priorities are
Throughout the fall, we leaned into the "togetherness" sentiment to rally our community—but competition for donor dollars was higher than ever. Current events had the overwhelming advantage, and rightfully so. First the world face-planted into a global pandemic. Then the people resounded with anger, sadness, and calls for justice after George Floyd's murder and similar police violence. The film industry wasn't exactly a top priority among industries to keep afloat and get back to work. At least initially. (What about breaking news journalists & those production teams!?)
We knew we were headed towards our most challenging legislative session yet. We had three important bills on the table, including a brand new initiative to support diversity, equity, and inclusion in local media production. Our efforts were noble—even designed to help those in our community who lost their livelihoods. But so many worthy causes were desperate for anything people could spare.