Link to Owner Dr. Robert B. Pamplin Jr.



Here's a roundup of county commission and other local candidates that will be voted on in the May primary.

HOLLY M. GILL/MADRAS PIONEER - Ballots for the May19 primary election will be sent out this week.


Jefferson County Commissioner Position No. 3


Kenneth "Kenny" Bicart

Age: Not provided

Family: I came to Jefferson County in 1947 with my parents, who set up farming on the Agency Plaines, where I continue to live and raised my three boys.

Education: Madras High School, business studies at Central Oregon Community College

Occupation: Owner, Bicart's Pipe & Supply, Flame-Out Fire Protection

Organizations: Co-founder of the Air Time Music Festival and member of Rodders Car Club.

Qualifications: Jefferson County 509-J School District Long-Range Planning Committee, Jefferson County Fair Board, president of Jefferson County Farm Bureau, Oregon Farm Bureau Board of Directors and Legislative Committee. Advisory committee and board of directors of Jefferson County Seniors Program. At the Oregon Legislature, I lobbied on transportation and labor issues, and passage of the gray water bill. Presently, I serve on Jefferson County Statewide Transportation Improvement Fund.

Why are you running? Not provided

COURTESY PHOTO - Wayne Fording

Wayne Fording (Incumbent)

Age: 59

Family: Sandra Dames and sons Tyler and Ian

Education: Decatur High School, Central Oregon Community College Small Business Development Program

Occupation: Owner, Madras Paint & Glass, Inc., Jefferson County Commissioner

Organizations: past president of Madras-Jefferson County Chamber , Redmond Crooked River Ranch Chamber, previously with Jefferson County Little League, Collage of Culture, Special Olympics, Madras Urban Renewal Task Force, Airport Industrial Site Committee, Jefferson County Budget Committee

Qualifications: Experienced Jefferson County Commissioner, served as chair and board member of Central Oregon Intergovernmental Council and Central Oregon Area Commission on Transportation. Previously served on Economic Development for Central Oregon board.

Why are you running? Serving the people has been an honor and very rewarding for me. If re-elected I will continue to listen to all, serve with integrity and make common sense decisions. When I made my decision to run again there was work I wanted to to see completed. We have our Transportation System Plan, the Health & Wellness Campus and projects at the fairgrounds that are in the works. Since that time, we all have been dealing with COVID-19. Now more than ever I want to see our county healthy, our economy on the rebound, and our residents back to work.


Kim Schmith

Age: 53

Family: My parents were Don and Sheila Schmith. My husband is Steve Evers, who was born and raised in Bend.

Education: K-12 through the 509-J School District (Madras/Metolius), B.S., Oregon State University, Masters of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine, (M.Ac.O.M), Oregon College of Oriental Medicine

Occupation: Madras Acupuncture, Acupuncturist/Owner

Organizations: Board of Directors, J Bar J Youth Services, 2004-2011, member of Kiwanis, Key Club adviser, Future Center mentor, Operation Rudolph organizer/lead, Relay for Life, member of the Madras-Jefferson County Chamber of Commerce, member of Madras Downtown Association, licensed by the Oregon Medical Board

Qualifications: With 21 years of experience as a small business owner, I have learned how to provide the best quality services while keeping expenses under control. I bring a common-sense approach to problem solving and am not afraid of hard choices or hard work. I am resistant to the county taking on additional debt. This means getting county services delivered at the highest quality with an eye on the bottom line.

I served on the J Bar J Operations Board from 2004-2011, where I was responsible for multiple programs with an annual budget of $7-11 million dollars.

My volunteer service throughout the community has given me experience and insights to the needs of the community.

Why are you running? I care deeply about this community. I will be the leader that stops, listens, and then makes things happen. I will work diligently to create the additional economic resources our communities will need to emerge with strength from the impact of COVID-19.

I will serve as a transparent and accessible commissioner and I will serve the people.

I bring a common-sense approach to problem solving. I believe government is strongest when inclusive of all residents. I am not afraid of hard choices or hard work. 

I support available and affordable housing; well-maintained roads; a strong health department; and effective law enforcement.

District Attorney, Jefferson County

COURTESY PHOTO - Steven Leriche

Steven Leriche (Incumbent)

Age: 55

Family: wife Roya), sons Sean and Ryan.

Education: Gonzaga University, B.A., and University of Oregon, J.D.

Occupation: District Attorney

Organizations: Oregon District Attorney Association and Animal Wellness National Law Enforcement Council

Qualifications: U.S. Army JAG CORPS Officer-1991-1998, Deputy District Attorney 1998-2008, and District Attorney 2009-present

Why are you running? I have raised my family in Jefferson County for over 20 years and I have an understanding of the people and the community. I have a deep affection for this county and I wish to protect the people of this community by enforcing the criminal laws of Oregon.

I also recognize that the interests and values of Jefferson County are frequently much different than Salem's.

Jefferson County Assessor


Jean McCloskey (Incumbent)

Age: 63

Family: Married, two children, six grandchildren, all living in Jefferson County.

Education: Oregon Department of Revenue, State Appraiser Certification,

American College of Real Estate & Appraisal, Appraiser Certification,

Appraisal Institute, continuing education, International Association of Assessing Officers, continuing education

Occupation: Jefferson County Assessor

Organizations: Oregon State Association of County Assessors, 2012 to present, serving as secretary/treasurer the last five years; International Association of Assessing Officers

Qualifications: 2007 to present, Jefferson County Assessor's office, serving as Assessor since 2012.

Why are you running? To continue to serve the residents, taxing districts and staff of the Jefferson County Assessor's office, in the capacity of assessor.


COURTESY PHOTO - Jamie McLeod-SkinnerCrooked River Ranch resident Jamie McLeod-Skinner is running for Oregon Secretary of State.

Age:  52

Family: Jamie is married and a step-mom to four kids. She and her wife have family throughout Oregon and appreciate the span of perspective they provide, from Medford to Crooked River Ranch, from Ashland to Jordan Valley.

Education: Bachelor's degree, civil engineering, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute; master's degree, city and regional planning, Cornell University; Doctor of Jurisprudence, University of Oregon School of Law; and five professional and civic certificates.

Occupation: Attorney and Natural Resource Consultant

Organizations: board member for the Jefferson County Education Service District (ESD); member at large for the Oregon Watershed Enhancement Board (OWEB); program manager, International Rescue Committee; co-managed water and sanitation projects for schools and health facilities in war-torn Bosnia and Kosovo; regional director for IRC, helped refugees achieve self-sufficiency in the U.S.

Qualifications: senior city planner, Sunnyvale, Califorina. Developed a citywide solar plan, reviewed stormwater management plans, and provided oversight of environmental impact reports for major development projects; environmental planner, Santa Clara Valley Water District (serving 2 million people in 15 cities, covering a mix of rural and urban communities); city councilor, Santa Clara, California. Twice elected (8 years), during which she served on a number of policy boards to better manage water resources, reduce greenhouse emissions, create housing solutions and promote a welcoming and safe community.

Why are you running? When I was a child, my mom told me to leave a place better than I found it. After completing my master's in regional planning at Cornell, I decided to use the privilege of my education to make a difference. The U.S. government was engaged in ending the war in Bosnia, but military service was not an option for out gays and lesbians in the 1990s, and I had come out as a young adult. So,I went to work for the International Rescue Committee (IRC), a humanitarian organization founded at the request of Albert Einstein to get Jews out of Nazi Germany. I managed multi-million dollar projects on the ground in Bosnia and Kosovo, rebuilding schools and hospitals. 

When you work in the aftermath of a war zone, particularly one marked by ethnic violence, you see firsthand what happens when the government fails. Trust is broken, and there is no safe space. You also see the flipside — the resiliency of people and the potential for great kindness. And how, when given the right tools, people can rebuild their lives and their government. Heroism takes many forms. 

When I returned to the U.S., the IRC asked me to manage its refugee resettlement office in San Jose. Instead of joining the private sector, I stayed in the nonprofit and public sectors — empowering underrepresented communities, improving organizational effectiveness, and developing land use and environmental policies. 

I began my public service with the intent of helping others. I stayed because I have been inspired by people committed to building healthier communities and functional democracy.

This vision has shaped my life's work. As your secretary of state, I will bring that same commitment to community building and good governance to all Oregonians.

State Senator, 30th District

Warm Springs resident Carina Miller is running for state senator in the 30th district. Efforts to reach Miller were unsuccessful.


State Senator, 30th District


Lynn Findley

Age: 67

Family: Wife, Shelley; two daughters, Elizabeth and Amy; one grandson, Nick

Education: Vale Union High School; Treasure Valley Community College.

Occupation: State Senator, Senate District 30; Organizations: Prior service as State Representative, House District 60; Malheur County Planning Commission; Lakeview City Planning Commission; Malheur County Rural Lands Committee, Southeast Area Commission on Transportation, Malheur County Economic Development, Wildfire Response Council and Greater Eastern Oregon Regional Solutions Committee.

Qualifications: State representative, House District 60; Vale city manager; Fire and Aviation Management, Bureau of Land Management, 32 years.

Why are you running? I'm honored to have the opportunity to serve as the Republican state senator for Oregon's Senate District 30. I am committed to advocating for agriculture and natural resources, removing barriers to economic development, fighting for lower taxes and smarter spending, and ensuring the issues that impact rural and eastern Oregon are a top priority for our state.

Senate District 30 represents over 36% of our state, and within those communities are tens of thousands of Oregonians just like you and me who want Oregon to be a better place to live, work and play.

That's why as your senator, I've stood up against powerful special interests and opposed the harmful cap & trade policy, requested millions of dollars in relief for natural disasters in eastern and rural Oregon, and voted against unaffordable, unnecessary taxes.

There's more work to be done. As your senator, my priorities are to:

Protect agriculture and natural resources. Enhance efforts in the preservation of water, ranching, timber and farming, and strengthen support for agriculture, natural resources, tourism and more that keep our communities beautiful and thriving.

Improve our economy. Increasing collaboration with state and local government agencies, remove and prevent unnecessary regulatory restrictions and other barriers related to economic development. Identify viable opportunities for local job growth, innovation and economic development.

Collaborate and communicate. Maintain open communication to make sure your needs and your priorities are being heard and represented so we can find real solutions to Oregon's largest problems together.

State Representative, 59th District


Daniel Bonham (Incumbent)

Age: 42 Family: wife Lori; daughter Jennifer; son Jack; dog Bruce  Education: Linfield College, Tigard High School  Occupation: Legislator, small business owner Organizations: Rotary, NFIB, Chamber, Alliance Church Qualifications: The Dalles City Budget Committee; The Dalles Urban Renewal Budget Committee; 2019 Henry Toll Fellow, The Council of State Governments; Graduate of Legislative Energy Horizon Institute, Deputy Republican Leader Why are you running? Salem needs strong advocates that will stand up to the interests of Portland and give a voice to rural Oregon. Forest management and wildfire season remain critical issues throughout House District 59. I've help passed legislation that improves the management of our federal forestland, reduced forest fire risk, and provides additional resources to watershed management. 

I've been a strong advocate for making sure that rural Oregon gets its fair share of tax dollars — helping to secure critical regional investments into the Jefferson Wellness Center, infrastructure projects for the Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs, and work with the Jefferson County community to increase penalties for child abusers by passing Ezra's law. I will always fight to bring balance and common sense to Salem in order to deliver results for our community.

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