Medford, OR – According to the statement, Gov. Tina Kotek and First Lady Aimee Kotek Wilson reportedly met with a wide range of leaders, community members, and providers in La Grande, Elgin, Enterprise, and Joseph.
Governor Tina Kotek and First Lady visited Eastern Oregon University for a conversation on early literacy, as well as a discussion on how the university is partnering with regional school districts and community organizations to create a pipeline of new educators.
The group focused on educator preparation and how the state can reduce impediments to workforce recruitment and retention in rural communities.
They also participated in a roundtable with affordable housing developers and local stakeholders in La Grande.
The conversation took place at Veterans Village Cottage Homes, an affordable housing project with 10 cottages that have rehoused homeless veterans in the community.
Participants identified the importance of creating a pipeline of construction education programs to build out the workforce in the region and provide opportunities to rural students.
Next up was a tour of Woodgrain Millwork, a company that recycles excess fiber and makes composite panels for lumber, moldings, doors, and windows.
Business Oregon recently awarded Woodgrain Millwork nearly $2 million to add new equipment that will improve their long-term sustainability and reduce greenhouse gasses and contaminated wastewater.
The day continued with a shopping tour of local small businesses in downtown La Grande and then wrapped up with a dinner with local elected leaders.