The Rock Stars Rocked It!

  • #celebrationofemployers
  • #disabilityemployment
  • #amplifysuccess
  • #workplaceinclusion
  • #bestpractices
  • #disabilitydiversitychallenge

“Enjoyed hearing best practices from employers sharing their success.” L.E.

“I loved this!  Thank you for great information!” L.G.

“Great event! Good mix of educational and promotional content.” I.A.

By Heidi Dirkse-Graw and Cindy Bahl

Above are some of the hash tags and pieces of feedback that exemplify the focus at the Amplify Rock Stars event on the morning of May 31, 2018 at Embassy Suites by Hilton, Washington Square-Portland-Tigard. Employers and community partners gathered to celebrate employers who, over the course of the last seven months, have taken tangible steps and exemplified passion to focus on several important questions:

  • What does it take for an employer to build a diverse and inclusive workforce that sees Ability vs. Disability when considering job applicants with disabilities?
  • “How can employers meet business needs by identifying job tasks within their organization that match the talents, skills and abilities of job seekers with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities?”
  • “What steps can an organization take to promote hiring and inclusion of individuals with disabilities in the workplace?”

During the event attendees got inspired from success stories, learning about best practice models from a workforce panel and hearing from Jeff Akin, a guest employer, who inspired and challenged the 70 people in the room with his humor and stories of disability inclusion success. He encouraged attendees to continue to “amp-up” their disability diversity initiatives and take the “Oregon Disability Diversity Challenge,” focused on helping employers take their next step forward in disability employment.

And, of course, we celebrated the, “Amplify Rock Stars,” those employers who took the challenge back in October 2017 at the inaugural AmplifySuccess! Event at Nike WHQ. The following employers were recognized:

  • Fred Meyer, Raleigh Hills, Leupold & Stevens & Oregon Health & Science University were acknowledged for providing employment opportunities through their inclusive hiring initiatives.
  • Embassy Suites by Hilton, Washington Square-Portland-Tigard was honored for implementing Project Search, a 9-week internship program for individuals who experience disabilities that will provide on-site training, develop job skills and a pipeline of candidates for not only Embassy Suites, but other employers as well.
  • Boys & Girls Club of Portland, The City of Beaverton, The Department of Human services; Imaging Records Management and Jama Software were all acknowledged for engaging with Dirkse CC who provided on-site Disability Inclusion and Employment Training to enhance their workplace culture.

If you missed the event, it is not too late for YOU to “amp up”!  What are your next steps?  We are here to help.  Please contact Cindy Bahl, Business Development Manager at: 503-258-7715 or to start the conversation.


2nd Annual Amplify Success! Event at Nike WHQ – October 18, 2018!

Event Sponsors were also acknowledged and recognized because an event like this could not happen without the support of our generous community.  

Collaborating Partners

Business Recognition Sponsors

Business Promotion Sponsors

D Three Productions logo
Portland Badge and Sign logo
Brubaker Photography logo
Embassy Suites by Hilton - Portland, Washington Square logo

Meeting Business Needs: Impacting Change

As a member of The Beaverton Chamber of Commerce I have had the opportunity to represent Dirkse CC and volunteer for the semi-annual “Business Walk” where volunteers go out in to the business community and ask three simple, yet important questions:

  1. How is business?
  2. How is doing business in Beaverton?
  3. What keeps you up at night/what are your challenges?

I like volunteering for this information-gathering opportunity for several reasons:

  1. The Volunteers are not “selling” anything.
  2. Volunteers are asking important questions.
  3. Volunteers are gathering feedback from the community.
  4. It’s fun!

Time is running out and seats are filling fast. Register for the FREE Amplify Rock Stars event today!

Since the mission of The BCC is to represent business in the community this short, in-person survey has the potential to impact change. Although promises are not made, some changes have occurred quickly as a result and others are given to City Leaders and Officials with a full report and actions available to those interested. The activity is a way to help meet the needs of businesses in the Beaverton community; to survey industries and to bring back input from the trenches to the front line for potential change.

This process is also how we at Dirkse CC help businesses recognize and respond to their specific Disability Employment and Inclusion needs. Through our complimentary consultation process of asking the right questions, identifying the challenges and gathering feedback, we can offer our 21 years plus of experience in creating an inclusive culture and in providing workplace solutions. Whether you are just thinking about disability diversity and inclusion in your business or you already have a plan in place, we can help you through the process of inclusive hiring, retention and training. It’s a simple process with impactful results for your business culture, your bottom-line and your community.

To learn more about what leading employers are doing to become more inclusive of people with disabilities, register to attend Amplify Rock Stars, May 31st, 8:00-10:00am at Embassy Suites by Hilton, Washington Square, Portland-Tigard, by clicking the button above. Our Workforce Panel Discussion “Tapping In To Ability” is sure to inspire and encourage you toward a plan of action for disability diversity and inclusion in your workplace.

Contact: Cindy Bahl, Dirkse CC Business Development Manager & Amplify Event Coordinator for more information. 503-258-7715 or

Amplify Rock Stars! Let’s Celebrate!

Seven months ago, on October 19. 2017 at NIKE WHQ, 115 employers and community partners joined together for Dirkse Counseling and Consulting, Inc.’s first Amplify Success event! This was an event designed to inspire the Portland community to take strides toward improving disability employment and inclusion in the workforce. Now we are gearing up for a celebration of the outcomes made by employers who took the Oregon Disability Diversity Challenge last October and to share news about promising practices in the Portland area.

Time is running out and seats are filling fast. Register for the FREE Amplify Rock Stars event today!

We want YOU to attend! The Amplify Rock Stars Celebration will be held on May 31st, from 8-10am at Embassy Suites by Hilton, Washington Square-Portland and you are personally invited! After all, who doesn’t like a good party?  Just like most parties there will be food, drinks, gifts, old friends, new friends and some fun, positive energy to start off your day!


Whether you attended the first event or not, you won’t want to miss our Workforce Panel discussion, “Tapping into Ability” which will give you information and ideas around best practices from leaders in the business community.  Our success stories promise to inspire and encourage as we share the impact employment has made for individuals hired and, on the organizations, who hired them.

If you’ve been on-the-fence, curious or have a plan in mind for disability inclusion in your workplace; this is the event for YOU!  Come and celebrate with us and learn what others are doing and what YOU can do to get “All Amped” up and become an Amplify Success Rock Star in your business or organization and in our community.

Let’s Party!

Empower Your Workforce
Affirm Abilities
Amplify Success!