FBI Portland
Portland Media Office
(503) 460-8060
December 20, 2021

The Red Door Project Earns FBI Community Leadership Award

Special Agent in Charge Kieran L. Ramsey has presented the leaders of Red Door Project with the FBI Director’s Community Leadership Award (DCLA) for their extraordinary contributions to violence prevention and education efforts in Oregon.

Red Door Project is one of 56 recipients from across the country chosen to receive the prestigious award. The FBI established the DCLA in 1990 to publicly acknowledge the achievements of those working to make a difference in their communities through the promotion of education and the prevention of crime.

Red Door Project’s mission is to change “racial ecology” through the arts. They envision a society where people from diverse racial backgrounds and experiences live, work, play, and create together while having the confidence, capacity, and opportunity to fulfill their highest human potential.

One of Red Door Project’s programs, the “Evolve Experience,” strives to decrease polarization and increase our collective ability to hold complex, nuanced viewpoints about the relationships between law enforcement and the communities they serve as well as the broader justice system. Red Door Project uses real-life stories to encourage participants to reflect on their viewpoints, engage in dialogue, and build motivation to take action. You can learn more about the program here.

Accepting the award on behalf of The Red Door Project were Kevin Jones and Lesli Mones. Mr. Jones is the “principal conjurer” and co-creator of the Red Door Project. He is an award-winning actor and director and a communication, organizational, and diversity consultant with more than 25 years experience working with private and non-profit organizations. Ms. Mones is the Red Door Project’s curriculum director and co-founder. She is an executive coach with a background in clinical psychology and conflict facilitation.

“In a society that is growing ever more polarized, the Red Door is cultivating spaces for people to listen to diverse perspectives, engage in challenging conversations, and reflect on how to expand beyond fear,” said Ms. Mones. “We cannot build communities that support purposeful, healthy lifestyles for all until we first begin to break down the walls that divide us. The Red Door offers tools for helping us do just that.”

“We are so honored to help celebrate the work of Red Door Project,” said SAC Ramsey. “These artists have put their hearts into bringing about thoughtful, impactful change to our shared community. They know that needed systemic change starts with our ability to listen to one another and acknowledge each other’s experiences.”

More information on the FBI Director’s Community Leadership Award, go to https://www.fbi.gov/about/community-outreach/dcla.