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Executive director of Newberg Downtown Coalition recognized by state agency

Mike Ragsdale, executive director of the Newberg Downtown Coalition, was recently awarded the Excellence in Downtown Revitalization Award as part of Oregon Parks and Recreation Department's Heritage Programs.Ragsdale

Ragsdale received the award, according to a press release, due to his efforts to reduce vacancies in downtown Newberg by improving how prospective tenants saw the town through a wine barrel planter project, organizing clean-up days, encouraging tenants to tend to the front of their buildings and securing façade and building improvement grants. He was also recognized for securing a state transportation growth management grant to "engage the community in visioning the transformation that would take place in downtown Newberg when the bypass is completed," the release said. He has also worked to secure annual sponsorships ranging from $5,000 to $25,000 as the Newberg Downtown Coalition works to build a reliable base for its Main Street program.

"The award winners reflect some of the highest achievements in downtown revitalization efforts across the state," said Sheri Stuart, state coordinator of Oregon Main Street. "It is simply amazing to see the people and partnerships that develop focused on enhancing the vitality of the historic core of their communities and the projects they implement primarily through volunteer efforts."

Ragsdale brings a wealth of experience to his job as NDC executive director, including a stint in the Legislature, as presiding officer on the Metro council and board member of the Newberg Cultural Center and Chehalem Park and Recreation District.

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