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Mayor Charlie Hales

City of Portland Mayor Charlie Hales

Phone: 503-823-4120

1221 SW 4th Avenue, Room 340, Portland, OR 97204

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Spirit of Portland

City Council to recognize 21 Spirit of Portland Award winners

FRIDAY, OCT. 25, 2013 – The Spirit of Portland Awards recognize local individuals and organizations who have demonstrated an outstanding dedication to positive change in our community. Award winners are those who have not only worked to improve the community, but who also have gone above and beyond a dedication to civic engagement in order to make a lasting impact.

Urban LeagueThis year’s Spirit of Portland ceremony is set for 7 to 9 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 12, at the East Portland Community Center, 740 S.E. 106th Ave.

Award winners are chosen from nominations submitted by fellow Portlanders to a selection committee of representatives from the Commissioners’ offices, the Office of Neighborhood Involvement, Neighborhood Associations and other diverse community organizations. The mayor and each commissioner also selects special award winners to recognize specific works and achievements.

“Inscribed into Portland’s Skidmore Fountain you will see these words: ‘Good Citizens are the Riches of a City,’” Mayor Charlie Hales said. “I think that is also the message behind the Spirit of Portland Awards. For truly, where would we be without those citizens who step up, volunteer, lead and find solutions to problems in their community?

“So often, these people do so with no thought as to recognition or personal reward,” Hales added. “Since the awards began in 1985, we have been able to, in some small way, show our appreciation for the work done by neighborhoods, small businesses, non-profits and so many individuals who make our city a better place to live. They truly are the Riches of a City, and we are grateful for them.”

The categories and award winners for the 2013 Spirit of Portland Awards are:


Neighborhood Association of the Year:

MountScott– Arleta Neighborhood Association


ommunity Harmony:

Midge Purcell with Urban League of Portland

Emerging Community Leader:

Pedro Moreno with Verde

Independent Spirit:

David Hampsten with Hazelwood Neighborhood Association


Outstanding Organization:

Friends of Gateway Green (Non-Profit)


Business Association of the Year:

North-Northeast Business Association’s Martin Luther King Jr. Dream Run

Community Stewardship:

Mark Lewis

Sandy Diedrich Environmental Stewardship Award:

Neighborhoods Community Garden

Outstanding Partnership:

Operation 305

Outstanding Organization:

Dennis’ 7Dees (For-Profit)

Commissioners’ Awards:

Mayor Hales Award:

Last Thursday Clean Up Dance Party

Commissioner Fish:

Individual: Steve Weiss

Individual: Briggy Thomas

Commissioner Fritz:

Organization: Right 2 Dream Too

Individual: Mary Ann Schwab

Commissioner Novick:

Organization: Disaster Relief Trials

Individual: Haven Wheelock

Commissioner Saltzman:

Organization: CASA for Children

Individual: Israel Bayer

This year, two posthumous awards will be given to recognize their outstanding lifetime achievements for community and neighborhood engagement:

  • Lee Perlman
  • Afifa Ahmed-Shafi

For further details, see the story at

China Venture

Mayor Charlie Hales leads a delegation of Portlanders to China

THURSDAY, NOV. 7, 2013 -- The Portland delegation's visit to China ended over the weekend. For Mayor Charlie Hales and First Lady Nancy Hales, the end of the journey took them to Kunming,

TourRose pin on Chinese youthHistory tourMayor and First LadyOld Town Kunmingstreet life


Thurs. Oct. 31, 2013 -- Mayor Charlie Hales spent much of yesterday in meetings with Party Secretary Dr. Fengyue Zhou, a ten year city planner and now head of Chenggong district of Kunming. The top concerns they shared were sustainability, green building and growing wisely. Dr. Zhou asked Portland to share some insight on how to build a truly sustainable city.  Mayor Hales said both Portland and Chenngong can magnify their impact by serving as prototypes for other cities in their respective countries.

The Chenggong district of Kunming had 100,000 residents ten years ago. Today, it has 300,000 and is designed to accomodate one million in another decade. Mayor Hales discussed the District's plan to preserve parkland, provide safe and attractive multi-modal experiences and invest in high tech, bio-pharmaceuticals, local agriculture and top level medical facilities.

Mayor Hales presented Portland’s commitment to low carbon livability and green city development to Dr. Zhou. Chenggong is one of only eight “low carbon districts” in China and the first to embrace "green building." Chenggong is striving to replicate and adapt Eco-districts based on Portland’s pioneering work. Mayor Zhou said smart urban planning is the key to our success as a city.

Our favorite pic of the day: the slide that reads: What is it about Portland?

with Party Sec Dr. Zhoumap of Kunmingexamining the layout of Kunmingfrank talks about sustainabilityconference titlewhat is it about Portland?


Mayor Hales chats with the owners of the Mark Spencermayor studies map of Tongli

Wed. Oct. 30, 2013 -- More photos from Mayor Hales' trip to China. He met with the mayor of Tongli at an art exhibit of Portland artist Grace Lim. Her work, Trails of Bliss, was shown in Portland before being shiped to our sister city, Suzhou! He also talked a little business with the owners of the Mark Spencer Hotel -- Portlanders Alix and Wei Nathan. Mayor Hales also clearly never misses a chance to learn about other city's infrastructure.



Mayor meets with the designer of Lan Su garden enjoying Rogue beer in Chinasmallest bridge in Chinawelcome sign at the Suzhou paperMayor sees 20 year old story about Mayor Potter

October 29, 2013. -- Mayor Hale's China Venture continues with many meetings to strengthen our relationship with Sister City Suzhou, China. Mayor Hales had a one-on-one meeting with the mayor of Suzhou, where they discussed their strong relationship and opportunities for an even stronger future. He and his wife, Nancy, enjoyed an elaborate feast with Sister City Association members.  It had a local flavor, as Rogue beer was served!  The Mayor also met with the president and designer of the Portland's own Lan Su garden. The delegation toured a garden and saw the smallest bridge in China It's said to be the model for Portland's own Lan Su garden. On a visit to the Suzhou Daily newspaper, the mayor enjoyed seeing a story from five years previously, when Portland amd Suzhou celebrated their 20th year as sister cities!




Mayor, Nancy and Suzhou diplomatsMayor speaks in ChinaMayor at Taicang Port

MONDAY, OCT. 28, 2013 

Mayor Charlie Hales and his wife, Nancy, pose at banner celebrating Portland’s Sister City relationship with Suzhou,China. The Mayor said a few words at the ceremony. The Mayor also visited Taicang Port and visited with the Vice Director, Tony Gao.


WEDNESDAY, OCT. 23, 2013 – Mayor Charlie Hales and a delegation of Portlanders are heading out this week to China.

The trip runs from Oct. 25 to Nov. 3. The missions are:

• To discuss green cities and environmental programs.

• To support sister-city relations, and sister-school relations with Portland-area schools.

• To visit with Chinese foundry owner Huo Baozhu, who donated a large elephant sculpture to Portland and who has offered to donate more as a fundraiser to support homelessness intiatives.

“This sort of mission is vital,” Mayor Hales said. “As a Pacific Rim city, our economic vibrancy, our artistic community, and even our environmental initiatives are linked toAsia. Trips like this can promote better understanding on a wide array of topics.”

Oregon Gov. John Kitzhaber -- who led a mission to China in October 2012 -- said such missions create a vital link between the nations.

"China is a critical trading partner with Oregon and we are committed to growing that relationship to ensure a bright economic future," Gov. Kitzhaber said. "I strongly believe Oregon’s products and expertise in green building and clean technology can help China meet its goals and open a whole new platform for exports and investment."

Among those taking the trip are Portlander Robert Fraser, a travel agent and president of the Portland Suzhou Sister City Association.

“This trip is a wonderful opportunity for our delegation to meet Suzhou leaders in business, education and culture and to exchange ideas which often lead to opportunities for mutual cooperation,” Fraser said.

“We will experience the rich history and culture of Suzhou and come back to Portland with a better understanding and appreciation for this city, which is known as the' Venice of Asia,'” he said. “We can better appreciate what Suzhou has to offer Portland and what Portland has to offer Suzhou. We have already seen this happen with the establishment of the Lan Su Chinese Garden; Skybridge, a center for educational exchange, and the Confucius Institute at PSU dedicated to promoting Chinese language and culture. There will always be new exciting opportunities born from these visits.”

The trip is being paid for by a variety of sources, including the hosting cities. Although final figures are not yet available, it is believed that the trip will cost the city of Portland less than $300.


Itinerary for the Trip

Friday, Oct. 25:

PDX to Shanghai.

Mayor Hales, his wife, Nancy Hales, and chief of staff, Gail Shibley.

Saturday, Oct. 26:

Visit the city of Suzhou, China.

Sunday, Oct. 27:

Travel to areas around Shanghai and Suzhou.

In Suzhou: Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Oct. 27-29.

Meetings: businesses, government officials and companies that work within Portland.

Visiting: Schools that have sister-schools in Portland. (For instance, Lincoln High); cultural sites; Suzhou Ballet (the troupe might visit Portland). There are about 20 Portlanders are on the trip to Suzhou.

Wednesday-Friday, Oct. 30-Nov. 1:

Mayor Hales, Nancy Hales, Gail Shibley: To Kunming,China.

Portland and Kunming have entered into a memorandum of understanding about planning and sustainability for green cities.

Funded by grant from The Energy Foundation.

Friday, Nov. 1:

Mayor Hales and Nancy Hales flying to Xi’An

Staying with Huo Baozhu, a foundry owner who donated an elephant statue in the park blocks. At a Portand City Council meeting this summer, he pledged to donate more, with proceeds to benefit programs for the homeless. Huo met Mayor Hales when he was on City Council.

Saturday-Sunday, Nov. 2-3:

Flying to Shanghai

Meeting with stakeholders. Arranged by the Portland Development Commission. Funded by The Energy Foundation.

Sunday, Nov. 3:

Fly back to Portland.


Artistic Mission


While inXi’An, the mayor and first lady will visit foundry owner Huo Baozhu. Huo owns Five Rings Cultural Relics inXi’an. It is licensed by the national government to reproduce Chinese antiquities. In 2002, he gave Portland the reproduction Shang Dynasty bronze mother and baby elephant sculpture, in gratitude for treatment he received here for his leukemia. He believes it helped keep him alive beyond his Chinese doctors’ expectations. 

The elephant sculpture is on display in the city’s North Park Blocks.

Huo also donated a bronze statue of ancient Chinese physician Sun Simiao to the Min Zidell Healing Gardenon the campus of the National College of Natural Medicine in Portland.  In addition, he donated a 6-foot-tall lantern to the Garden of Surging Waves in Astoria.

In June of this year, he offered to donate more works for the city to auction or sell, so the money could be used to benefit the homeless.




To Pave Or Not To Pave

City Seeks Input for Pilot Project to Enable Community Uses on Unpaved Streets

TUESDAY, OCT. 22, 2013 – Portland has about 60 miles of unpaved, dirt and gravel streets within the city limits. While the city does not maintain these unimproved streets, some residents have taken the initiative to create garden plots, rest areas and other community uses in these public spaces.

Mayor Charlie Hales has directed the Portland Bureau of Transportation to gather community input on how the city can enable such community uses on streets.

Mayor Hales, Commissioner NovickThe concept came from Mayor Hales, who thought the city should try to empower communities to help determine what their neighborhoods look like by creating something useful and attractive. Many homeowners on unimproved streets have said that expensive paving projects are not what they prefer, but lower cost alternatives such as placing benches or gardens in the public right of way would still require a City permit.


Community meetings to share your ideas for community uses of unpaved streets


The public is invited to share their ideas at two upcoming community meetings. This will be an opportunity to share issues and concerns city staff should take into consideration as they develop the project:

Monday, Nov. 4

6:30 to 8 p.m.

East Portland Community Center

Poolside Room No. 1, 740 S.E. 106th Ave. No. 15, No. 20, Southeast Main St. Max Station/Green

Wednesday, Nov. 13

6:30 to 8 p.m.

Hollywood Library

Community Meeting Room, 4040 N.E. Tillamook St. No. 12, No. 75, 4 blocks to Hollywood/NE 42nd Ave. TC Max Station


Support from Mayor Hales and Transportation Commissioner Steve Novick


“Too often, the city comes at a problem with a one-size-fits-all approach,” Hales said. “But when we have dozens of miles of public space taken up by streets that predate the City’s development rules, that the city can’t maintain, we should allow neighborhoods the flexibility to create appropriate uses for these public spaces.”

“This is very much an idea still in the exploratory stage,” Hales said. “We may find no interest, or we may find a lot of excitement to transform gravel roads into something both functional and appealing to the neighborhood.”

City Commissioner Steve Novick praised the effort. “As Commissioner in Charge of Transportation, I appreciate the Mayor’s approach to identify creative uses of unimproved streets,” Novick said. “I look forward to the outcomes of the pilot project to address this long running community concern.”


Outreach already begun in partnership with PSU students


Starting Oct. 19, students from a Portland State University civic leadership class began going door-to-door on behalf of the city in the Cully and Outer Southeast Division neighborhoods to gather ideas and gauge public interest in two areas that have concentrations of unimproved streets.

“We are happy partnering with PSU to get some input from residents and see if it’s a viable idea to alter, rather than just pave,” Hales said.

The PSU students are asking residents if they would prefer to use some or all of an existing unimproved street as a pocket park, community garden site, or other option. Residents may see a need to provide a mix of vehicle access with community amenities along a single street.


Next steps:


If there is interest in this new approach to dealing with gravel streets, the next step will be setting criteria for evaluating candidate pilot street projects and further engagement this winter with neighborhood and community groups. The city’s goal is to select four unimproved streets from sites proposed by community groups and homeowners throughout the city for an initial pilot project in 2014.

No final decisions on street alterations are expected before summer 2014.




The city of Portland will make reasonable accommodation for people with disabilities and people needing assistance with language interpretation and translation. Please notify us no less than five business days prior to the events. (503) 823-3075 or, TTY: (503) 823-6868, or Oregon Relay Service at (800) 735-2900.


Project website:


Flier for Community meetings:


English -

En Espanol -


Thorns Bring Home National Trophy

Mayor Hales is on hand to celebrate victory

WEDNESDAY, SEPT. 4, 2013 – The Portland Thorns Football Club held a rally Wednesday for their boisterous fans at Jeld-Wen Field, in honor of bringing home the National Women's Soccer League Championship, in this, the Thorn's first season.

Mayor Hales speaks“We love our Thorns!” shouted Portland Mayor Charlie Hales, as the crowd roared. He was joined on stage by Portland Commissioner Nick Fish and Nancy Hales, Portland’s First Lady.

Hales pointed out that it was Portland’s first national professional sports championship since the 1977 Trail Blazers.

Trophy"It's been great to come home to a city you put so much pride into playing wearing that jersey and playing for Portland and seeing that reaction," said Thorns goalkeeper Karina LeBlanc, as quoted by Reporter Jeff Thompson of KGW.

The Thorns shut out the top-seeded Western New York Flash with a 2-0 win Saturday in Rochester ,N.Y., to win the national title. The team finish the season tied for the league lead with 38 points (11-6-5 overall), and drew average of 13,320 fans to 11 home matches.

Not all of the Thorns were in attendance Wednesday, as some had been called up to national teams. The roster includes: Rachel Buehler, Marian Dougherty, Tina Ellertson, Becky Edwards, Danielle Foxhoven, Adelaide Gay, Elizabeth Guess, Tobin Heath, Angie Kerr, Karina LeBlanc, Allie Long, Nikki Marshall, Alex Morgan, Emilee O’Neil, Casey Ramirez, Meleana Shim, Christine Sinclair, Nikki Washington, Tiffany Weimer, Courtney Wetzel and Kathryn Williamson.

FansThe team is lead by Head Coach Cindy Parlow Cone and her staff: Assistant Coaches John Galas and Nate Berry; Trainer Sheila Tatsunami; and Manager Megan Lovich.

2 playersThorns at Council