Being chief of staff for an elected official at City Hall apparently qualifies you for two types of jobs: top bureaucrat and elected official.
Already this year Mayor Sam Adams has appointed Tom Miller, his former chief of staff, to head the Portland Bureau of Transportation. Miller's successor, Warren Jimenez, became an assistant Portland Parks and Recreation director. Ty Kovatch, Commissioner Randy Leonard's chief of staff, jumped to the Water Bureau. And Betsy Ames, Commissioner Nick Fish's former chief of staff, took a job with the city Office of Management and Finance.
Now Sam Chase, another former chief of staff to Fish, is running for the Metro Council. He is following the trajectory of Adams, who was chief of staff to former Mayor Vera Katz before being elected to the council.
Jeff Cogen was Commissioner Dan Saltzman's chief of staff before winning election to Multnomah County Chair. Fish was re-elected to the council by beating Jim Middaugh, former chief of staff to Commissioner Erik Sten. Middaugh is Metro's communications director.
Rush opponents raise their voices
The controversy on Rush Limbaugh's offensive remarks about birth control and a law school student have reached Portland. Russ Martineau, a former Portland Tribune and Willamette Week advertising director, is mounting a campaign to pressure KEX (1190 AM) to drop Limbaugh's still-popular talk show. Using the name Citizens for Civility, Martineau has emailed friends and asked them to contact both the station and its advertisers and complain about the show.
'Rush Limbaugh has been offending me for years. I have had enough,' Martineau wrote in his email, which lambasted Limbaugh for calling Georgetown law student Sandra Fluke a 'slut' and a 'prostitute' for testifying in favor of contraceptive coverage in health insurance packages.
Hundreds of radio stations carry Limbaugh's daily show, including 16 in Oregon. In 2008, Limbaugh signed an eight-year, $400 million deal with Clear Channel.
Hands and money raised, too
All Hands Raised, formerly the Portland Schools Foundation, has proven that its new name brings a lot of cache - and cash.
The organization met its fundraising goal by raising a whopping $100,000 from supporters during a lively paddle raise on Feb. 29 at the 17th Annual Roast Festival. The money will help serve the 90,000 students in Multnomah County's six school districts.
The use of the Rose Garden Arena for the record-setting crowd of several hundred was donated by Trail Blazers Chief Executive Officer Sarah Mensah, who also serves on the All Hands Raised board of directors.
The 'Hacks vs. Flacks' theme pitted three lawmakers against three newsmakers, and in the end the newsmakers took the crown with better comedic delivery and material. Oregon GOP Chairman Allen Alley, former U.S. Congresswoman Darlene Hooley and former state Rep. Ben Cannon (now education adviser to Gov. John Kitzhaber) took the jabs like champs, though. Especially Cannon, who apparently is one of the 'hottest' political advisers in the U.S./world/planet, according to various ratings and surveys.
The official zinger of the night, however: Kitzhaber's jeans are one of the artifacts on display at the Oregon Historical Society, complete with the spot for the 'lieutenant governor, get it?' Portland Monthly writer Zach Dundas deadpanned. Kitzhaber appears to have been the only elected official (including people running for office or former office holders) not in attendance that evening.