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Partner & Program News

Vertuelab Assistance with Navigating Government Funding for Green Cities Businesses

Are you a small business in Portland impacted by COVID?

Are you now (or interested in becoming) involved in delivering climate solutions and seizing the opportunities coming as a result of increased government investment in climate, recovery, and infrastructure?

In partnership with Prosper Portland, the Professional Business Development Group, and GCAP (Government Contracting Assistance Program), VertueLab is excited to offer a range of programs to support businesses like you.

This program offers:

  • Opportunity Scanning.  An increasing number and variety of climate action, transportation, and infrastructure funding opportunities are being issued and anticipated in coming years. This program can help scan policies and funding solicitations for contract opportunities for small Green Cities companies like yours.
  • Assistance in Pursuing Government Contracts. Businesses with skills, services, and technologies that are needed by the government struggle to access contracts due to bureaucratic hurdles that can be unfamiliar and daunting. This program can help you handle the process and develop the ability to successfully land government contracts.
  • Research and Development Grant Writing Support. Applying for federal funding is complex and challenging. Few companies have the knowledge of and ability to navigate arcane government vocabulary, processes, and forms. This program can put your experience to work for you by assisting in writing proposals for non-dilutive federal funding for research and development.
  • Mentorship. The pathway to generating wealth from climate solutions can be unclear, with many administrative hurdles – but we believe that this program can connect you with valuable support from mentors and coaches who can help you navigate the path to the climate tech sector as suppliers, contractors, or service providers.

Take the first step today by letting VertueLab know you’re interested in getting support. Visit this website to learn more, fill out the intake form below and someone from our team will be in touch.

What’s new with Portland Means Progress (PMP)

Portland Means Progress (PMP) is a Greater Portland-based initiative that provides connections for businesses to hire local underrepresented students and young professionals of color, purchase from businesses owned by people of color, and create diverse and vibrant workforce and company cultures. The goal is to connect businesses to programming that supports social impact, creating a pipeline for private-sector engagement. View the most recent Portland Means Progress Impact Report. 

When your business signs up to be a Portland Means Progress member, you gain access to free programming to support your company in its Diversity, Equity, Inclusion (DEI) journey. A few of such member-only resources and events are listed below. Contact Katherine Krajnak, Green Cities Liaison, at to see if PMP might be a fit for your company.  

Events open to all (you do not need to be a Portland Means Progress member) 

  • My People’s Market: My People’s Market is an excellent way to find BIPOC vendors to support catering, corporate gifts and other services. My People’s Market 10 will take place September 17 & 18 at the Bridge Lot at OMSI. 

Upcoming Portland Means Progress member-only events and programs: 

  • My People’s Market lunch for Portland Means Progress business members
  • Access to a Mercatus Purchasing Liaison who can provide connections to local BIPOC-owned businesses based on your organization’s purchasing needs! 
  • he Portland Means Progress Members Area has recordings of past trainings, access to the Equity Commons to connect with local racial equity practitioners, and registration info for future events & programming.  
  • Coming soon: A four-part series on how to host meaningful internships, an Inclusive Policy Lab, Portland Means Progress Company Teach-Ins, opportunities to build connections with Equity Commons practitioners, and intentional purchasing best practice sharing.

Clean Industry Hub Study and Denmark Exchange

Two exciting efforts are underway to help Portland industry reduce waste and emissions while strengthening competitiveness and inclusive prosperity. 

The first effort kicked off in June when a delegation from Portland traveled to Denmark to learn about cutting-edge practices in industrial symbiosis and industrial energy efficiency and decarbonization. In the second week of October, some of the Danish hosts will be traveling to Portland to help us consider applications of the Danish model to our context. 

The second, related effort, is a Clean Industry Hub study that will identify opportunities to assist industry with the transition to clean, circular, decarbonized, and inclusive practices. Look for further updates in our next newsletter.  Feel free to contact Katherine Krajnak, Green Cities Liaison, at if you’d like to be added to the stakeholder list in this important work in industrial decarbonization and sustainability. 

Inspiring Diversity Grants (IDG)

Eleven local businesses representing Portland’s targeted industries – green cities, athletic and outdoor, technology and media, and metals and machinery, as well as consumer goods and non-profit organizations – will receive grants to support their work to promote diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI). Ten of the recipient businesses are either BIPOC- or women-owned, and the selected companies represent more than 550 employees in Portland.

Green Cities businesses and non-profits funded in this round include Good Rain Farm, Willamette Technical Fabricators, Volt E-Mobility and Recode. 

Read the full press release here

If you want to apply for the next round of applications, sign up for the email updates on the IDG program website.


Matching Grant Applications Open for Recipients of SBIR and STTR Program Awards

Business Oregon has opened a Request for Grant Applications for applicants that have received a federal Phase I or Phase II Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) or Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) award that may be eligible for a state matching grant. An Oregon company that has received a recent Phase I SBIR or STTR award may submit a proposal for a project up to $50,000. A company with a recent Phase II or Fast-track award may submit a proposal for a project up to $100,000.

To apply for a matching grant, complete an application form, which can be accessed at Business Oregon’s SBIR webpage. Submit the signed application along with the additional required documentation to Applications are due no later than 11:59 pm PDT on Friday, October 7, 2022.

Renewable hydrogen is a frequent topic now in the clean energy community. Hydrogen’s potential as the ‘Swiss Army knife’ of decarbonization and its promise to help clean up the most difficult-to-decarbonize sectors makes it an important tool in the clean energy and clean transportation toolkit.

The Renewable Hydrogen Alliance (RHA) is a key resource in the Pacific Northwest’s hydrogen landscape. It’s a non-profit headquartered in Portland and founded in June 2018 by Pacific NW energy stakeholders including the Bonneville Environmental Foundation (BEF), Northwest Natural, Forth and 3Degrees. We asked Michelle Detwiler, Executive Director of RHA, to shed some light on this growing industry.  | Read the full interview here

Local Industry News

Oregon Mass Timber Coalition Awarded Funds to Create Jobs and Address Housing

With a $41.4 million federal grant, the Coalition aims to grow the mass timber industry and increase statewide housing production.  | READ MORE

Portland Clean Energy Fund recommends $111M in grants

Portland’s first-of-its-kind climate justice program is proposing nearly $111 million in grants aimed at fighting climate change and advancing racial and social justice. | READ MORE

Metro grants $2 million to organizations with innovative ideas to reduce waste

Birch Community Services works to stabilize families on the brink of financial crises. One of their programs connects families in need with rescued groceries that would otherwise be disposed. | READ MORE

Community Events


Job Listings

Our partners are hiring! If you are searching for work in Portland, here's a great list of opportunities —one of them might be a perfect fit for you. 
Copyright © 2022 We Build Green Cities, All rights reserved.

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