Resolution honors Katz as 'pioneering and visionary leader'
A House bill proposed this week would honor former Portland Mayor Vera Katz.
House Concurrent Resolution 213, introduced Thursday, Feb. 8, by state Rep. Jennifer Williamson, a Portland Democrat, memorializes Katz and her contribution as a state representative and mayor of Portland.
"When an eighth-grade Vera Katz was asked for a school assignment what words she wanted to have put on her tombstone, her response was, "She made a difference," according to the two-page resolution. "Vera Katz will be forever remembered as a pioneering and visionary leader whose career of dedicated public service touched the lives of so many and left an indelible imprint on the state of Oregon and the city of Portland."
Katz died Dec. 11, 2017, at 84. She was born Aug. 3, 1933, as Vera Pistrak in Dusseldorf, Germany, where her parents settled after fleeing Moscow following the 1917 Bolshevik Revolution.
Katz was Portland's longest-serving woman mayor. Her political career stretched across three decades. She was elected to the Oregon House in 1972 and re-elected nine times.
In 1985, Katz became the first woman Speaker of the House, a position she held for three sessions. She was elected mayor in 1992, and re-elected three times, leaving after her third time in January 2005.
After leaving office, Katz worked as a political consultant and dealt with a rare form of uterine cancer called adenosarcoma.
A hearing on the resolution is planned at 3 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 13, before the House Committee on Rules.