Visions for Post-Pandemic Eugene: The Next Normal series

Date: September 10, 2021

Time: 12:00pm to 1:30pm

Event Type: Online/Virtual


Eugene, Oregon

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Recording Date: Wednesday, September 8, 2021, 1 PM, by ZOOM


In recent months, thought leaders across the political spectrum and across industry/academia have begun to discuss the what some call “New Normal” of post-pandemic America, from public health and the impact of technology to the nature of the workforce and beyond.

As Eugene and Lane County emerge from the first phase of the COVID-19 pandemic, City Club has a unique opportunity to localize this conversation and ask the big questions about what we want in our own future.

That’s why City Club’s theme for the 2021-2022 programming is what we call the “Next Normal” – a focus on how our city and region can reset our intentions and consider choices that lead to better outcomes for all Oregonians.

To that end, our season kickoff program is titled “The Next Normal: Life in Post-Pandemic Eugene.” Our goal is to engage in a broad conversation about the vision for Eugene’s future in a post-pandemic world.

Over the program year, we will follow up this forum with a series of additional, topic-specific forums, including next week’s forum “Flexible, Adaptable, Visible: The Future of Working from Home,” and deep dives into the future of public safety, education, the built environment, and more. Meanwhile, we hope you will read this opinion on Eugene’s “Next Normal.”

Please join us virtually for this program.


Name: Joel Iboa
Title: Executive Director
Organization: Oregon Just Transition Alliance

The proud son of immigrants, Joel was born and raised in Eugene and is the first in his family to graduate from college. As Founding Executive Director for the Oregon Just Transition Alliance (OJTA), Joel served as Campaign Director of the Oregon Clean Energy Opportunity during the 2021 Legislative Session. Under his leadership Oregon now has the fastest timeline and best labor standards for 100% clean energy in the country. 

Joel was a Coalition Manager for Causa Oregon, Oregon’s Immigrant Rights Organization, during the Trump administration. Joel doubled the size of One Oregon, building a statewide coalition of over 100 organizations with the sole focus of defending against anti-immigrant and anti-muslim policies and ballot measures. Joel led coalitions defending the nation’s first sanctuary law as well as advocating for the passage of HB2015, making Oregon the 14th state to allow people without legal status the ability to drive. 

Joel served as chair of the Eugene Human Rights Commission (2019-2021) championing two Sanctuary resolutions anda resolution condemning white nationalism. Joel is the youngest person to be elected Chair for the Oregon Governor’s Environmental Justice Task Force. 

Name: Vera Keller
Title: Associate Professor of History
Organization: University of Oregon

Vera Keller is an Associate Professor of History at the University of Oregon. Professor Keller’s research focuses on the emergence of experimental science in early modern Europe. She studies and writes about how our understanding of experimental knowledge evolved from being a form of thought that sought to purge human subjectivity and forge absolute certainty to being a quest that embraces doubt, epistemic risk-taking, and the pursuit of highly improbable but very (humanly) desirable knowledge goals. Professor Keller’s research has opened a window into how people have conceived of the future at various points in time, particularly moments of seemingly great change.

Name: Lyllye Reynolds-Parker
Title: Civil Rights Activist and Educator

Lyllye Reynolds-Parker is a civil rights activist and educator. Born into one of the founding Black families of Eugene, she has been a leader in the city’s movement for racial justice. She started college at 40, as a single parent, and stayed on after graduation to become a counselor at the University of Oregon’s Multicultural Center. In honor of Ms. Reynolds-Parker’s achievements, the UO opened the Lyllye Reynolds-Parker Black Cultural Center in 2019.

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