Roger Vonderharr, who died too soon at the age of 67 on May 22, wasn't the flashiest leader in East Multnomah County - but he was proof that steady work toward worthy long-term goals will eventually lead to a better community.

As mayor of Fairview from 1995 to 2002, Vonderharr presided over a period of rapid change in that city. However, the growth Vonderharr supported wasn't just for the sake of growth. He and other Fairview leaders emphasized quality first, and they advocated long and hard for the best public services for Fairview residents.

As a result, Vonderharr was there for the opening of the Fairview-Columbia Library, the new Fairview post office and the new City Hall. He also saw Fairview Village arrive at near completion.

Beyond being mayor, Vonderharr volunteered in numerous other capacities. His leadership will be sorely missed, but he also can be remembered for the improvements he left behind.

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