Jason J. Dorsette, associate director for strategic communication with the Educational Opportunities Program at Oregon State University, has been named the 2021-22 president of the Corvallis-Albany Branch of the NAACP, which includes Linn and Benton counties.
For the next two years, Dorsette will lead the branch’s 2021 executive committee. The Corvallis-Albany branch in 2021 expanded to more than twice its membership in 2020.
Dorsette moved to Corvallis in 2014 to take a job at OSU and is working toward a doctoral degree in educational policy and equity at the university. He arrived in Corvallis with experience building bridges for individuals and organizations so that they can effectively collaborate and engage in positive social change activities that help build a better community for all.
Dorsette moved to Oregon from North Carolina. The Black population in Oregon is about 3 %– and even lower in Linn and Benton counties. North Carolina’s population is 22 % Black.
“Here, my racial identity is more salient, more obvious,” Dorsette said. “I thought I was pretty confident in my understanding of my own racial identity development but moving to the Pacific Northwest indeed challenges that notion. I noticed my racial identity became the utmost importance to me because I was lacking the type of community that I was accustomed to—the type of community I needed.”
Dorsette said “Despite notable advances, it goes without saying that we will continue to require an intentional emphasis on African Americans, Indigenous, and other people of color groups who have shouldered the plight of disparate living experiences in our local area, state and nation. The years of individual, institutional, and structural racism has institutionalized discrimination but together, in community with each other, I am convinced that betters days are indeed coming.”
Dorsette has identified several plans and goals for the branch over the next couple of years as the branch celebrates its 50th anniversary this year and invites everyone to join in as 'we get in good trouble for justice.' One of his most important priorities will be to increase the branches capacity around working alongside other local and state leaders and progressive organizations to advocate on every front for Black, Indigenous and other people of color. To learn more about some of the NAACP Corvallis-Albany plans and initiatives over the next couple of years listen here. For additional information about the Corvallis-Albany NAACP and ways that you can get involved contact [email protected]