Bend, Or. (June 8, 2021) Joey Drucker, City Club of Central Oregon’s executive director announced her retirement after 10 years leading the organization. Drucker will retire at the end of October 2021.
“It has truly been an honor for me to work with such a highly respected organization,” Drucker said. “As Central Oregon has grown, so has City Club. The wide range of issues we discuss are challenges our community faces daily. I am sad to leave City Club, but Central Oregon is my home and I will continue to advocate for active community dialogue.”
During Drucker’s tenure, City Club’s membership quadrupled, as did attendance at its monthly forums. “We’ve been fortunate to have been led by someone who knows Central Oregon so well and cares so deeply about our community,” said Blair Garland, City Club board president. “Under Joey’s leadership, City Club’s reputation has grown as the place where our community discusses our most pressing issues. Joey leaves a strong legacy at City Club, and her work has positioned us well for the future.”
Over the past 10 years, some of City Club’s most memorable forums included topics such as PERS, tourism, Mirror Pond, gender in the workplace, regional resiliency, wildfires, civility and many more.
Drucker also expanded City Club beyond monthly forums. Partnering with the League of Women Voters, City Club held free candidate forums during election times to promotes active, informed citizenship in building a stronger community. In partnership with Better Together, City Club also piloted a Youth Speaker Series designed to address the needs of area youth. They team up with the Bend Chamber and their Young Professionals group on an annual forum. And the organization initiated the popular annual regional manager’s forum, featuring the city managers from Bend, La Pine, Madras, Prineville, Redmond, and Sisters.
One of the biggest challenges during Drucker’s career at City Club was navigating the COVID-19 pandemic, as in-person forums were central to the organization. Drucker immediately pivoted to livestreams, holding 3 times as many programs than it had before the pandemic. “I knew we couldn’t simply pause operations and wait to have these conversations. We not only kept going but tripled our efforts. Now, City Club and our community are both stronger for it,” said Drucker.
While City Club of Central Oregon is a member-based organization, funding from annual and forum sponsors is essential in order to reach everyone in the region. And while other organizations experienced a decline in revenue as a result of COVID-19 last year, City Club saw an increase in the number of businesses and individuals who recognized City Club’s importance in the community and stepped up to sponsor.
City Club also received several grants from organizations such as Oregon Humanities and Facebook, where City Club was recognized for its work in making the community a better place.
The board of directors has opened a search for a new executive director to take on the role in October. Community members interested in the position can read the job description online at cityclubco.org.
About City Club of Central Oregon
City Club of Central Oregon exists to be the top-of-mind hub for citizens and community leaders. We intentionally shape our community and influence public policy while preserving our uniquely warm and connected culture. We champion “passionately non-partisan” discussion between diverse perspectives. To learn more, please visit our website at cityclubco.org.