Wheeler names new Portland chief administrative officer
Two major city of Portland appointments were announced on Thursday, April 14.
Mayor Ted Wheeler has appointed Bureau of Environmental Services Director Michael Jordan as the city's new chief administrative officer.
Commissioner Carmen Rubio announced she has appointed Lisa Watson to become the new Director of the Office of Equity and Human Rights.
Commissioner Mingus Mapps, who is in charge of the environmental service bureau, appointed deputy director Dawn Uchiyama as Interim director.
Jordan replaces longtime Wheeler aide Tom Rinehart, who will step down in early May.
Jordan comes to this position with more than 30 years of experience in public management at a city, county, regional and state level.
"I'm eager to work with Mayor Wheeler, City Council, and the OMF team to guide the transformation of our city over the coming years. As the world changes and the city grows, evolves and prepares for transition, we need to adapt and adjust the way we do our work to support our community. I look forward to the challenges ahead and to continuing to serve Portland," Jordan said in the Thursday, April 14, announcement.
"I appointed Michael to this role during a time of incredible transition for this city because his public service is marked by successful transformational change. I look forward to working with Michael to ensure the city continues to evolve to meet the needs of our community in an increasingly efficient, equitable, and sustainable way," Wheeler said.
In his new position, Jordan will lead the Office of Management and Finance, which includes the bureaus of Human Resources, Technology Services, and Revenue and Financial Services. This position also oversees citywide programs and projects such as the Charter Commission, the City Arts Program and the Spectator Venues and Visitor Activities Program.
"I am thankful to Tom Rinehart for the dedication, leadership and service he has exhibited over the last five years in this role — leading initiatives and programs like the Community Safety Division, the 311 customer service program, the reconstruction of the Portland Building, and the Integrated Tax System. He has led the Office of Management and Finance through some of the city's most challenging times and we are well poised to continue building on the foundation he has laid," Wheeler said.
Jordan will begin this role starting in May.
Watson's first day will be June 1. Joining her in a leadership role is Jeff Selby, who has served as the Interim Director over the past several months and will become the Office's Deputy Director.
"Lisa and Jeff share my vision for an Office that is trusted by our city employees and working in partnership with community. We need an Office that both serves our internal needs and helps Portland become the best version of itself — to dismantle systemic racism and become more just. Lisa and Jeff will take us there by leading a culturally-responsive organization, equally valued by staff and community," said Rubio
"I am honored to have the opportunity to lead the Office of Equity and Human Rights with the City of Portland. I thank Commissioner Rubio for the faith and trust placed in me for this role. Prioritizing equity within the city, its bureaus, and for our leadership and employees paves the way for everyone to be able to bring their full humanity to their work. Working to build equitable systems, structures, and policies can contribute to not just the richness of working within city government, but can add to the pride we all take in living here as Portlanders. I am excited to work toward building an even more equitable city working with this amazing and skilled team. As a lifelong Oregoninan, I look forward to serving the city I love and have made my home," said Watson.
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