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Oregon Ethics in Business – Learning from the Best

It’s that exciting time of year when the Oregon Ethics in Business Awards will be announced during a gala event in Portland.  Organizations – for-profit and non-profit – and individuals from around Oregon were nomiOregon Ethics in Business Willamette Universitynated for the awards.  Willamette MBA students were then charged with vetting the many nominees and writing detailed reports and summaries for the selection committee.  After several months of hard work, the 2012 finalists were announced.

Evaluating nominees for the awards program goes beyond a simple scan of mission statements.  The evaluation process, led by Professor of Management Practice Larry Ettner, involves digging deeply into the organization’s (or individual’s) culture to uncover how the concept of ethics is interpreted and embodied.  Students have an unparalleled opportunity to meet with business executives, review financial statements and ask the the “tough” questions.

The winners of the 2012 Oregon Ethics in Business Awards will be announced during the awards banquet on Wednesday, June 13 in Portland.  Follow @WillametteMBA on twitter and the hashtag #wumbaethics for up-to-the-minute news.

Finalists include:


The Collins Companies

The Collins Companies is a vertically integrated wood products firm that focuses on forestry, environmentally sensible harvesting, milling and production, and transportation. It is a 156-year-old operation with 700 employees in facilities throughout Oregon, Northern California, Pennsylvania, and Virginia. The Collins Companies is a private company, adhering to a strict moral code, a clear mission, purpose, vision and core values.

Wildish Companies

Wildish is a family-owned business, comprised of four companies, Sand & Gravel, Building, Paving, and Construction with over 500 employees. Wildish is located in Eugene, Oregon, but has equipment and crews throughout Oregon. From mining and crushing aggregate to bridge and highway construction projects, Wildish serves clients throughout the Pacific Northwest. The goal of the company is to provide high-quality service by being a leader in the industry, valuing employees, respecting the environment, and supporting the community.


Camp Fire Columbia

Starting in 1910 with a focus on giving girls a foundation of leadership, Camp Fire Columbia has transformed into a co-ed organization aiming at empowering youth to become leaders and positive contributors to society. Serving eight counties in the Portland region, Camp Fire Columbia provides various after-school and summer programs to over 3,000 area youth. Programs include supporting academic achievement, community engagement, building social and life skills, and developing career and college readiness.

Medical Teams International

Medical Teams International is an organization that provides medical care and relief services to communities that have been affected by disaster, whether natural or manmade. It currently operates disaster responses efforts in over 80 countries around the world and has mobile dental vans that serve people in the United States and other countries. Medical Teams International also has established the REAL.LIFE. Exhibit, located in Tualatin, Oregon, a walk-through, multi-sensory exhibit that allows people to experience what it is like for children affected by disaster, conflict and poverty.

NextStep Recycling

NextStep Recycling is a community service organization based in Eugene, Oregon. It has implemented a three-part mission, which pledges to educate and empower disadvantaged citizens by providing access to electronics, recycling electronics in an environmentally sound manner, and providing skill-training opportunities to the disadvantaged population. Since 1999, the organization has recycled over 10,900,000 pounds of electronic waste, while refurbishing over 23,000 computer systems. During that time period, over 2,300 volunteers have donated approximately 196,000 hours.

Northwest Family Services

Northwest Family Services was founded in Portland, Oregon in 1983 with a focus on providing training and educational programs to serve the community. It offers a wide range of services and programs from professional counseling, job readiness and placement, work solutions, positive youth development, youth mentoring, gang prevention, school site management, healthy relationships education, financial literacy, parenting, anger management, and many more. Northwest Family Services partners with over 150 local organizations, including twenty-five school districts.


Graham Covington

Graham Covington is the chapter founder and director of Minds Matter Portland, an organization that supports high achieving students from low income backgrounds in their pursuant of a college education. His work with Minds Matter is one of several efforts throughout his lifetime in which he has supported youth. Other examples include an SAT tutoring program at Jefferson High School and mentoring thought the Big Brother organization.

Kathy Moeller

Kathy Moeller is a certified brain injury specialist and founder of Cognitive Harmonies, a provider of cognitive prosthetic memory systems. Having suffered a traumatic brain injury as the result of a 1990 head-on auto accident, she developed the Brain Book to assist her in maintaining short-term memory. Since 1993, she has shared the Brain Book with others and has trained over 400 individuals to live independently using this system.

George Rode

George Rode is the president and owner of Autohaus, Euro-Asian Automotive, and Stadium Automotive repair shops in Eugene, Oregon. In addition to servicing cars for over thirty years, he has also been involved in numerous activities within his community including: volunteering for Meals on Wheels and SCORE, membership in the Chamber of Commerce, serving on the boards of McKenzie Personnel and Eugene Police Civilian Review Board, as well as being President of the Southtown Rotary Club.

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