Kennemer announces his retirement
After nine years in the Oregon House of Representatives, Bill Kennemer has announced he will not seek reelection.
In a letter to his constituents, Kennemer wrote that "it is now the season for more time with family, friends, and some more fishing and traveling."
"Some recent health problems (not life threatening) have made Cherie and me newly aware that we are here but for a limited time, and we must do our best to make the seasons of our lives the best they can be," he wrote.
Kennemer has represented Clackamas County for more than 30 years. He served as a state senator from 1987-1996 and as a county commissioner from 1997-2008. He's been the representative for Oregon House District 39 since 2009. His district includes Estacada, Eagle Creek, Barlow, Barton, Beavercreek, Boring, Canby, Carus, Charbonneau, portions of Damascus and Happy Valley, Fisher Mill, Mulino, Redland and rural Oregon City areas.
Additionally, Kennemer practiced as a psychologist for almost 25 years.
In his letter, he said an experience from his childhood in Corvallis inspired him to support his fellow Oregonians through public service and psychology.
"One day there was a flue fire, and the house virtually exploded with fire. A neighbor invited us to live temporarily in their basement while literally the community built us a new house, complete with an actual working bathroom!" he recalled. "I was astounded as people we did not know showed up in droves. The church lessons on 'love your neighbor' became real to this little boy. And I learned an incredible lesson about social responsibility and kindness."
Kennemer said his political service "has been the honor of a lifetime."
Kennemer will to serve through the end of his current term. In the upcoming legislative session, he will serve on the House Healthcare Committee, House Rules Committee, and the House Business and Labor Committee and the Joint Committee on Legislative Policy and Research.