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Oregon Benefit Companies — Eight Years Later
October 29, 2021 @ 11:30 am - 1:00 pm
Join the Oregon State Bar Sustainable Future Section for an update and review of the Oregon Benefit Company statute ORS 60.750-ORS 60.770. An Oregon benefit company is a business that has a purpose of providing a general public benefit in addition to any other type of purpose. A general public benefit means a material positive impact on society and the environment, taken as a whole, from the business and operations of a benefit company.
Enacted in 2013, the statutory framework requires the business to use a third party standard to measure the business’ general public benefit and to publish a report annually.
The Oregon Secretary of State Corporations Division Director Eloisa Miller will present from the State, along with Assistant Director Lisa Snegireff, Small Business Ombudsman Trevor Leahy. An attorney panel will follow with Kimberly Pray, Catalyst Law LLC and Michael Jonas, Rational Unicorn, moderated by Diane Henkels, Henkels Law LLC. Program topics will include the status of Oregon Benefit Companies, motivations and mechanics of business clients choosing to become benefit companies, third party standards to measure the general public benefit, and common confusions and misperceptions encountered in the statutes’ implementation. See the OSB Sustainable Future Section CLE for a one-hour CLE providing the history and context of this legislation.
11:30 Introduction: Diane Henkels, OSB Sustainable Future Section Programs Committee
11:35 Eloisa Miller, Director, Corporations Division, Oregon Secretary of State
12:00-12:45 Attorney panel discussion with Kimberly Pray and Michael Jonas, moderated by Diane Henkels.
12:45-1 Q&A with all speakers
OSB Sustainable Future Section June 25, 2013 CLE: “Oregon’s New Benefit Company Statute: Combining Pursuit of Profit with Public Benefit” w/attorneys Jeff Wolfstone and Bill Campbell Video https://sustainablefuture.osbar.org/past-cle-materials/benefit-company-statute/
Benefit Companies as eligible for gang prevention and intervention grant funds:
Eloisa Miller is the Corporation Division Director for the Oregon Secretary of State. Her portfolio includes overseeing the Business Information Center, Office of Small Business Assistance, Uniform Commercial Code, Notary, and Business Registry. Her professional background includes policy making, leading statewide initiatives, local and rural community engagement, economic development, advocacy for Oregon businesses, and is a seasoned diversity, equity and inclusion professional. Eloisa is committed to supporting the success of all Oregonians and is passionate about ensuring business owners have equitable access to critical resources to start, sustain, and thrive.
Trevor Leahy is the Secretary of State’s Small Business Ombudsman. He has 13 years of state service in Oregon with the Office of Small Business Assistance and the Employment Department. Since 2014, he has been working with businesses on understanding compliance, identifying resources, and navigating the requirements for doing business in Oregon successfully. Trevor now manages the office of Small Business Assistance, where he and the rest of the team provide help to businesses with questions, concerns, or problems with state and local government agencies. Trevor thrives on representing the government as approachable and human, eagerly helping entrepreneurs find answers to their questions and making positive connections.
Kimberly Pray: [bio coming soon]
Michael Jonas, JD, MBA is the Principal Attorney and Owner of Rational Unicorn Legal Services PC, a community based business law firm. The firm offers pay as you go legal services including business formation, contract review and drafting, trademark and copyright applications, and conflict resolution. The firm is a certified Oregon Benefit Company and strongly believes in and practices the triple bottom line. Passionate about community engagement, Michael dedicates time to volunteering with several nonprofit organizations. He currently serves on two nonprofit boards: New Leaders Council (NLC), the hub for progressive Millennial thought leadership; and The Sean Goodman Foundation for Performing Arts, that envisions a world where people from all walks of life regardless of race, creed, ethnicity, religion, sexuality, gender identity, age, special needs, disabilities, and socio-economic level are given the necessary support and resources to express themselves, their beauty, and their essence in the form of art.
Moderator: Diane Henkels (she/her), Attorney & Managing Member at Henkels Law LLC based in Portland and Newport, Oregon. The firm serves clients and the community advocating, informing, and empowering on behalf of clients in Indian and tribal, energy and utility, and small business contracting. Henkels Law LLC clients were among Oregon’s inaugural Benefit Companies and the firm is itself a benefit company. A founding member of the Sustainable Future Section, Diane Henkels served on the SFS for nine years, including one year as Chair, and she received the OSB President’s Award for Sustainability in 2012.