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The death of Portland Commissioner Nick Fish triggers a Metro race when Councilor Sam Chase runs to replace him

PMG FILE PHOTO - Former state Rep. Mary NolanFormer state legislator Mary Nolan has announced for the Metro Council seat being vacated by Sam Chase. He is running to fill the unexpired term of the late Portland Commissioner Nick Fish.

"Metro is the glue that holds the whole Portland metropolitan area together," Nolan said in her prepared announcement. "I have a proven track record of major initiatives in protecting natural resources, expanding transit, and planning for livability for today's families and seven generations to come, exactly what Metro is all about."

Nolan served six term in the Oregon Legislature. She ran for the City Council against Commissioner Amanda Fritz in 2012 but lost in the November run-off election.

Nolan's announcement included endorsements from several well known political figures, including former Oregon Gov. Barbara Roberts, former Metro President Tom Hughes, Oregon House Speaker Tina Kotek, and former state Sen. Margaret Carter.

At the Legislature, Nolan served as House Majority Leader and co-chaired the budget-writing Ways and Means Committee, supported the MAX extension to Milwaukie and the construction of Tillikum Crossing, and successfully pushed for the extension of Oregon Opportunity scholarships to community college students.

According to her announcement, Nolan currently serves on the boards of Teatro Milagro, OHSU's Avel Gordly Center for Healing and Unitus Community Credit Union. She does community development work with Caudaloso LLC, and is a facilitator for the Conservation Project of Oregon Humanities.

The Metro Council is non-partisan. If no candidate receives more than 50% of the vote in the May primary election, the top two finalist face off in the November general election. Other rumored candidates include patent lawyer and business consultant Karen Spencer; Q Center Executive Director Cameron Whitten; and Portland Planning and Sustainability Commissioner Chris Smith.

Fish died halfway through his last term of stomach cancer on Jan. 2.


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