Forget keeping Portland weird because these amazing moms are dedicated to making it (and the rest of the world) wonderful. From working to find foster homes for homeless children to empowering other mothers and much, much more, these power moms are working tirelessly to make our community better and stronger while raising the next generation of Portlanders up right. Click through the slideshow to get inspiration from these PDX power moms.

Joy Stoelting, Advocate for the Transgender Community

If someone had told Joy that she would become a vocal advocate for the transgender community 10 years ago, she would have responded with, “What does transgender mean?” But over the last eight years, she learned firsthand what it meant while watching her brave child grow and develop her sense of self, which meant transitioning to a new name (Ella) and different pronouns as she became Joy’s daughter. That was the easy part though. Witnessing the discrimination against the transgender community was much more difficult. Mother to both Ella (8) and Piper (10), Joy holds down a full-time job and dedicates all of her free time to advocating for the transgender community by working with local schools to raise awareness and volunteering for organizations like Basic Rights Oregon.

Joy’s work has included involvement in the Basic Rights Oregon marriage equality campaign; speaking at schools; advocating for healthcare, housing and employment rights for the LGBT community; and engaging rural Oregonians in an effort to expand acceptance beyond Portland alone. Joy’s hard work is well worth it to her. With a goal like ending discrimination against transgender people before her daughter becomes a teenager, how could it not be?

Words of Wisdom: "My mantra from the moment my children were born has always been- 'It's not our job to accommodate our children, it's our job to acclimate them to the world they live in.' The goal has never been for our kids to live with us and our protection forever. The goal is for them to go out into the world with their own plans as contributing members of society."

 

Do you know a Power Mom in Portland who you thinks deserves celebration? List her in the comments below!

—Annette Benedetti