Mt. Hood board candidate refuses to speak with the media
George 'Sonny' Yellott is running unopposed for the Zone 4 seat of the board
An unopposed candidate for the Mt. Hood Community College Board of Directors is refusing to speak with the media, citing it as a radical organization that misrepresents and twists the truth.
Im not going to get involved in any potentially hostile media outlets, George Sonny Yellott said after declining to return two phone messages from The Outlook requesting interviews. Im not going to consent to any interview over the phone, in person or over email.
Yellott also refused an interview with MHCCs student publication, The Advocate, on three separate occasions, abruptly hanging up on the second try.
We feel as a staff that a board member is responsible for talking to the media, said Katelyn Hilsenbeck, a reporter and ad manager for The Advocate. If he is not able or willing to do that, I dont believe it would be the right position for him.
Yellott is running for the District 4 seat of the board on the May 21 ballot, after running in 2012 as a Republican for Oregon House District 48 against Democratic candidate Jeff Reardon. Yellott was defeated, with Reardon taking more than 69 percent of the vote, 13,967 to 6,255.
Rod Monroe has held the MHCC District 4 seat since 2005, but notified the board in December he would not seek re-election.
I really dont know the man and have not met him personally, Monroe said. But think its unfortunate. Ive always been willing to talk to the media.
According to Yellotts candidate filing, he is a former truck driver, casino employee, bartender and forestry worker with ties to the conservative, anti-tax political advocacy group Americans for Prosperity.
"He is a smart and articulate man who is always willing to step in and volunteer whenever we need help," said Karla Kay Edwards, Oregon state director of Americans for Prosperity. "He's a great sounding board and community sport."
Yellotts statement in the Multnomah County voters' pamphlet also lists his affiliation with the Pacific Northwest Paralegal Club and Oregon Citizens Lobby.
Yellott states he was the precinct committee person and House District 48 captain for the Multnomah County Republican Party.
It is important to increase the opportunities for students to connect with the business community, Yellott wrote in his statement. My goal is to find effective ways to do that.
I will research ways to enable the board of MHCC to continue in the quest for excellence and to develop ways to enhance building the stellar image of this fine institution.
"With your support we will achieve maximum value for your tax dollar.
Yellott received his associates degree in paralegal science from Portland Community College and took several prerequisite computer classes at the Maywood Park campus of MHCC to learn computer skills for his program, according to his statement in the voters' pamphlet. He also lists a background in hotel administration.
He declined to give any further comment on his candidacy.
"(What the media publishes) is not close to what the truth is, Yellott said. It's totally misrepresented. I do not trust you to do what is right. I would be interviewed if it was the proper arena.
Stop using my air time, Yellott said before hanging up with The Outlook. Youre wasting my money.