From The Editor

If you are among those suddenly working from home…

There has been quite a lot written about the workforce – thrown out of offices, and suddenly required to work from home – but you haven’t yet heard much from those in Inner Southeast who have been doing it for upwards of thirty years. So, your editor, who is one of those, leaps into the breach to share some tips on the subject.

Yes, THE BEE has been a home-based business since September of 2000, when your editor accepted the assignment from Pamplin Media to intensify the newspaper’s mission of covering everything going on in the section of Inner Southeast Portland from Powell Boulevard south to the Clackamas County line, and from S.E. 82nd Avenue of Roses west to the Willamette River.

We ourselves do it all from home; and our correspondents all work from home as well, and are physically situated around Inner Southeast in such a way as to give each one a different perspective on various neighborhoods in the area.

After having worked exclusively in offices for many years prior to building our home office, we learned rather quickly several things. On the positive side of the ledger, we were far more productive than in an office environment, because we could allocate our time, focus on what we were doing, and avoid interruptions!

But – you may not be as productive at home as in an office, if you are not self-motivated.

There is such a thing as “high school mode” – that’s when, given the chance to goof off, you find it irresistible to do so – so getting anything work-related done seems harder in the home environment. You certainly will be more productive in an office if you find you really need supervision.

To succeed working from home, you must be self-motivated. And, to reinforce that attitude, we advocate dressing for business each day that you’re working, and having set aside a dedicated office workspace in which to work. Dressing professionally not only tells others that you are working, and should not be disturbed – it tells you, too! And having a dedicated workspace enforces that, for everyone else at home, and for you as well.

So there you are, at home in a space large enough in which you can get down to work. Do you have the tools you need? Number one is a reliable computer – and these days, that can certainly be a laptop, giving you the option of taking the office with you if need be. Computers and the Internet have made it possible, for twenty years, for THE BEE to be a home business – albeit one owned by a large company, Pamplin Media.

And if you expect to be working at home more than just temporarily, you probably should have more than one dedicated computer! We have at least two others set up with the same programs, applications, and tools, ready to go immediately if something happens to our main one. And also, we constantly back up our computer, because a computer failure may be sudden and it can be permanent – sometimes caused by malware, sometimes by a hard drive giving out, and sometimes by a mysterious catastrophe of no clear origin!

Our backup system is online – a service called Carbonite. It has saved THE BEE’s bacon more than once and, since it backs up documents and photographs on the computer constantly and automatically, you don’t have to remember to do it. If the computer dies, you can use your online backup to upload all that content onto your next computer, and let you pick up where you left off with minimal delay. If your computer crashes and takes away part of what it holds – the document file, or all the hotlinks in your browser’s “favorites”, or some other specific section of the data, but otherwise is okay – you can use this system to restore just the parts that were lost. (That most recently happened to us just last month!)

And, if you need something on your computer while at your company headquarters or anywhere else, you can log into Carbonite from any computer and import just what you need to the computer where you are. All this may sound like an ad, but it is simply a heartfelt endorsement! When you cannot afford to lose what’s on your computer, you must have a reliable continuous backup. Find out more about this one, if interested, at –

The essential computer peripherals, for us at THE BEE, include a high quality printer, and a photo-scanner. If you need something else for your home office, get it and install it. You need to be able to do at home what you need to, without having to go back to the office or duck down to a UPS or FedEx Store at odd hours to use something like this – especially since you may find yourself needing it outside business hours! (We get more done at night than in the daytime; that’s when e-mails dwindle and interruptions stop.)

And, since you are doing your business over the Internet, you need a reliable high-speed connection. If it’s as vital to you as it is to us, you may need more than one, because failures do occur – particularly with Internet service delivered over television cable. We ourselves have four Internet connections – one fiber-optic very-high-speed connection; one DSL connection (these are officially no longer sold, but we are reluctant to give ours up, since it is reliable and rock-solid) – and we also have two different wireless Internet services, which work at home, but also give us portability to take our computer elsewhere and continue working. You may not need such redundancy, but for us, no Internet means no BEE!

There is much more we could share about working from home, but that’s a good start, if working from home is suddenly what you have to do.

And, if the idea of working from home permanently appeals to you, you might consider joining the local nonprofit business association particularly for those who freelance or work from home: The Association of Home Businesses. It has been a local fixture, meeting in Inner Southeast Portland, since 1991.

We have been a member for almost that long, and have found that those who work from home are among the most interesting, intelligent, and sharing people we’ve met. The meetings are fun and useful. Currently it meets monthly online; when “social distancing” has ended it will resume in-person meetings at SMILE Station in Sellwood. Learn more, and RSVP for the next monthly meeting if you’d like, online –

And may you enjoy your time working from home!

Letters to the Editor

Glad to learn of “Eastside Village”


Please give my thanks to Elizabeth Ussher Groff for writing such a complete and accurate article about Eastside Village. Being transplants to Portland from Connecticut, we wondered how we would make friends here and thought it would take a long time.  However, we joined the village and have immediately gained a whole group of people who want to meet new people and do things together.

This article will help spread the word throughout the Southeast neighborhoods and encourage seniors to reach out to each other to help stay in the area and have some fun together.

Again, please thank Elizabeth for me and thank you for running the article.

Anne-Marie Dallaire
via e-mail

EDITOR’S NOTE: To find out more about “aging in place” with the help of Eastside Village, go online – – or call 503/866-0571. The nonprofit organization’s official address is c/o 3915 S.E. Steele Street.


Homeless aid continues at All Saints; you can help


We at All Saints Episcopal Church, 4033 S.E. Woodstock Boulevard, are still offering Hot Meals to-go on Saturdays starting at 11 a.m., and handing out personal items (toiletries, toilet paper, masks, and even hand sanitizer). The showers and laundry vans are there from noon to 2 p.m.

But we do need to raise about $500 per month for the additional water expense of the laundry and showers, and to be able to offer a temporary restroom facility during “Stay Home, Stay Safe.” With many public facilities no longer open, we’ve learned that it’s a significant need.

Please let BEE readers know that they can go to – – and please designate that it’s for the Laundry/Showers program, to help these services continue.

We are also accepting donations of more of these personal items I mentioned. You can email us to arrange a drop off –

Rev. Andria Skornik
via e-mail

A third Rose Festival Princess this year lives in BEE country


Yesterday our family received THE BEE in the mailbox, like we do every month, and were so excited that the cover story was on both Franklin’s and Cleveland’s Rose Festival Princesses.

I am reaching out to let you know that my daughter, Melyssa Okazaki, is this year’s Central Catholic Rose Festival Princess, and she also lives in and supports the Southeast Portland area.

We live off of Woodstock [Boulevard], and are very proud to be a part of the community.In the future if you are reporting or celebrating the Princess' could you please consider including her in your story.

Vicki Okazaki
via e-mail

EDITOR’S NOTE: We cover the two public high schools to which families in THE BEE’s service area send their kids; but it was not our intention to overlook a student in our service area who received recognition in another high school – we just didn’t know about the connection. David Ashton has subsequently covered Melyssa’s coronation – see the story elsewhere in this issue of THE BEE – and we hope that all three Princesses chosen this year from our service area will have a Rose Festival this year to get involved in!


Cleveland High reunion planned


I am writing to inform BEE readers that the Cleveland High School Class of 1970 is currently in the planning stages for our 50th Reunion. The reunion will likely take place this September, assuming we will be free of social distancing at that point! We are currently formulating a contact list of all graduates. If you are a 1970 graduate, or know someone who was, please take a moment to provide their contact info (name, address, phone, but most importantly e-mail address) to Mimi Laws Alkire ( or to We will use this information to reach out and inform them of all details as they become available. We would love to see as many classmates as possible after sooooo many years!

Ron Cascisa (CHS 1970)
via e-mail

Mascot has changed


The [May BEE article on the] selection of the Franklin High School Rose Princess, by David Ashton, incorrectly stated that the mascot of Franklin High School is the Quakers. The mascot was changed to “Lighting” by the members of the Portland School Board. The [previous] mascot name really was the Fighting Quakers. This was to honor the members of the Quaker religion who participated in the Revolutionary War, against the standards of their religion. At that time, Quakers were to be absolutely passive. Participation in the conflict, from participating in a boycott to actual combat, was against their religion. After the war, these Fighting Quakers were not allowed to return to their religious groups because of their lack of passivity. It is ironic that the [PPS-mandated] name change was initiated by a converted member of the religion who thought the name of the mascot was [supposed to be] the name of the religion.

Gordon Hillesland
S.E. Windsor Court


Merchant sends a letter


The following e-mail message was sent by Hector Mejia Zamora, of Zamora Café on Gladstone Street in the Creston-Kenilworth neighborhood, to a Woodstock resident who had made a modest donation to help him continue making tamales with his mother, and donating tamales to people in need of food, during the COVID-19 pandemic. I wanted to share this with BEE readers. . .

“I hope this e-mail finds you well. It has been a very challenging experience to jump from where we had planned to be three weeks ago, to what our reality is now. Things are hard, and they might get harder, hopefully, they don't. However, out of all this madness, darkness and uncertainty, one thing is for sure; kindness, unity, and hope, are the best qualities of our community. I’m more than grateful for everyone coming together to help me to keeping going and enabling me to contribute to our community.

“I thank you, from the bottom of my heart, for your support, your help, your time, and your generosity towards me and my mission. I’m a strong believer that together we are stronger, and I’m living that every day throughout peoples’ acts of kindness and support.  I received your letter today, and it made me very happy to get your handwriting as a gift by itself. It will be a treasure I will keep for myself – and as for your monetary donation, I will make sure to use it for the best interests of our community.

“As of today, I’ve donated 480 Tamales, a good portion [of them] going to Transition Projects and Voz Workers’ Rights Education Center. Another portion to Grout Elementary School, and the Creston Kenilworth Presbyterian Church. 

“Nonetheless, I’m aware there are more places we can help, and even though it might not be much, a little helps a lot. Today, I was able to send 30 tamales to Sisters of the Road, and I will keep working with my mother to provide tamales to our community. Again, thank you, and I hope you stay safe, warm, and positive overall. We will overcome, stronger than ever. – Hector Mejia Zamora.”

Elizabeth Ussher Groff
via e-mail

EDITOR’S NOTE: We learned from a reader that Mr. Zamora was involved in an auto accident in March which, although it did not injure him, caused him to close his coffee shop temporarily. If you went by and found it closed, it should be open again by this time.

Letters to the Editor may be submitted via e-mail by clicking HERE.

All letters to the editor are subject to editing for clarity and available space, and all letters become property of THE BEE.

Ronald A Hall
Ronald A. Hall

Ronald A. Hall
April 20, 1948 – March 19, 2020

Ronald A. Hall passed away peacefully at his home March 19, 2020, with his family at his side. He was born in Washington, D.C., on April 20, 1948, to Isabel and Earl Hall. He was the second of seven children.

The family moved to Portland when he was 2-1/2 years old. He had happy memories of his early years growing up in the kid-filled neighborhood of Ladd’s Addition. He attended St. Phillip Neri Grade School, and Central Catholic High School. He went to college at Portland State University (PSU), where he met his wife, and received his degree in Psychology. He later lived in Woodstock.

As a young adult he spent time traveling to Mexico, Europe, and India, and as did many of his generation, he questioned old ideas and explored new ones. During that period, he found and began a meditation practice that remained important to him throughout his life.

Ron eventually returned to PSU to earn a Certificate of Public Health; in 1984 he earned a Master’s degree in Public Administration, and he went on to enjoy a 35-year career in Environmental Public Health at the State of Oregon. With family encouragement, he followed the call of service to Thailand, Iraq, and Rwanda, providing help in refugee camps through the organization “Public Health International”, for which he later served as a member of the Board of Governors.

His interest in world religions began to blossom, too; he became an ardent reader, and very knowledgeable about religious history and religions of the world. Early on he taught a class on the subject at PSU, and his passion for these topics eventually led him to teach many classes in world religions at First Unitarian Church in downtown Portland.

Ron and Sherry married in the mid-seventies, and they had two boys. When he wasn’t supplementing the family income by painting houses, he would be at Cub Scout meetings, or coaching one of the kids’ baseball and basketball teams. Ron and Sherry sponsored and coached the chess club at Lewis Elementary School for six years. The team, including his sons and a few neighbors, did very well in local and regional competitions.

Ron was an assistant basketball coach for the freshman team at Cleveland High School with his oldest son for seven years, something they both enjoyed greatly. As the children got older, he began to play golf more regularly with friends and even got two holes in one. He continued to play pick-up basketball at PSU, and although he vowed to quit at age 70, he did not. Celebrating an Oregon Ducks Rose Bowl and a Pac-12 basketball title were fond memories of his final months.

Ron is survived by his wife, Sherry, two sons, their spouses, a granddaughter, five siblings, and many in-laws. His older brother George, and his parents Isabel and Earl, preceded him in death.

A Celebration of Life will be held when circumstances allow. The family advises that donations may be directed to COVID-19 coronavirus relief. – Elizabeth Ussher Groff


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