In 2001, a small group of people, inspired by Marshall Rosenberg's process of Nonviolent Communication, formed an organization called the Oregon Network for Compassionate Communication (ORNCC). ORNCC took its name in part from the then existing sister organization, Puget Sound Network for Compassionate Communication (now called Northwest Compassionate Communication). The original founders of the ORNCC shared the dream of "spreading NVC" throughout Oregon and southwestern Washington.
We began to gather volunteers in Bend, Eugene, Portland, Salem, and Vancouver to form what we called "regional core teams", which were meant to provide networking and project-generating centers within each community. We were able to bring Marshall Rosenberg and other trainers to the various areas, as well as to coordinate some local NVC activities: classes, practice groups, and community get-to-know-you gatherings of different sorts.
In 2002, the ORNCC incorporated as an Oregon nonprofit corporation, and began the process of applying for the status of a 501(c)(3) nonprofit charitable organization. Between 2002 and 2004, we hosted Marshall Rosenberg in trainings in Eugene and Portland.
ORNCC was awarded 501(c)(3) nonprofit status, enabling it to receive tax-deductible donations to support the work of the organization. We hosted Marshall Rosenberg on a tour through several cities, including Portland, Salem, Eugene, and Bend.
ORNCC hosted Marshall Rosenberg in Portland for a series of workshops on different topics, including business; and spirituality.
In January 2006, we conceived of and began the nearly two-year process of designing and producing a regional conference at the University of Oregon, which was called "Nonviolence as a Way of Life."
We received the IRS "final ruling" of tax exempt status and continued planning the conference project. We filed a DBA with the state of Oregon to form the Coalition for Nonviolent Living as a project of the ORNCC that would include other organizations in supporting and producing the conference. The conference steering committee of eight individuals was comprised of several ORNCC board members, as well as a few people from the Eugene Interfaith Community.
In September of 2008 we put on the three-day Nonviolence as a Way of Life Conference, which included several nationally known speakers: Marshall Rosenberg, Julia Butterfly Hill, and the Reverend C. T. Vivian. Additionally, the conference offered 120 workshops provided by community members covering 14 thematic areas, including Education, Sustainability, Spirituality, Restorative Justice and Conflict Resolution.
2009 was a year of consolidation and organizational housekeeping, in the wake of planning and hosting the Nonviolence as a Way of Life Conference. Key accomplishments included revamping the ORNCC website, and sponsoring the Oregon Prison Project, which was coordinated by Fred Sly and Steve Blechman.
ORNCC continued its institutional revamping by approving and ratifying updated bylaws, and examining the relationship between the board and the governing council of the organization. The new bylaws added social change as a major goal of ORNCC. This was also the year when ORNCC began a reflection on its mission after Marshall Rosenberg, the creator of NVC, decide to stop offering trainings.
ORNCC welcomed new members to the board, and one of the founding members conducted a review of the history of the organization. 2011 was a year of clarifying ORNCC's relation with different projects. ORNCC and the Oregon Prison Project (OPP) ended their contractual relationship, although ORNCC continued to support OPP through the donation of NVC educational materials. ORNCC sponsored Teach4Life, a one week training for teachers facilitated by CNVC Certified trainers, Sura Hart and Jean Morrison in Portland.
The board adopted a policy regarding requests from other organizations for support from ORNCC and decided that ORNCC will phase out selling NVC educational materials. Most of the board's energy was focused on organizing a major event: the first annual NVC Community Gathering, scheduled for January 19, 2013 in Salem. ORNCC also hired a webmaster.
ORNCC began the year with a statewide NVC gathering/training in Salem in January, and put on a statewide NVC community picnic in Salem in September. Additionally, ORNCC sponsored a training in Lincoln City and a training in Eugene (a fundraiser for the Lane Country chapter of the NAACP). ORNCC also began the process of creating a new website, developed one integrated email list, and spent time responding to the name change of an NVC group in Ohio.
Work on the ORNCC website continued in 2014. A second statewide community picnic, facilitated by NVC trainer Sarah Peyton, was held in Salem in September. NVC training materials in Spanish were made available on the website by one of the ORNCC board members.
Two new members joined the board in January 2015. NVC founder Marshall Rosenberg died in February. A memorial event honoring his work was held in Eugene. A third statewide NVC picnic, organized by ORNCC, took place in September in Salem. ORNCC hired a new website developer, Echozone. Launch of the website, in December!
Much time in 2016 was devoted to ironing out and gaining greater familiarity with the new ORNCC website. A listing for trainers, available on the website, was put together. ORNCC started work on a census of NVC trainers, practitioners, and activities in Oregon.