Here's a late-breaker: Former Gov. Barbara Roberts is among the eight applicants looking to fill the vacancy on the Metro Council.
That's an intriguing wild card in the mix to replace Councilor Robert Liberty, who stepped down last month to take a job at the University of Oregon. Roberts is a Democrat who was governor from 1991 until 1995, and remains a go-to ex-pol when it comes to candidates for other elected positions seeking endorsements.
We've already reported on two other notables who declared their interest in getting the appointment to the non-partisan Metro Council post right after Liberty's resignation announcement—Bob Stacey, who narrowly lost the election for Metro President last November; and former six-term legislator Bob Shiprack, former executive secretary of the Oregon State Building Trades Council
The schedule calls for the Metro Council to interview the applicants in a 5 pm public meeting on Wednesday, Feb. 16 at the David Douglas School District headquarters (1500 SE 130th Ave.). After the public testimony that night, the Metro Council will decide whether to appoint a new councilor then or invite a group of finalists to appear in a public debate. If that debate occurs, it will be held on Tuesday, Feb. 22, at 5 pm at Metro Regional Center (600 NE Grand Ave.). And if that debate happens, the Metro Council will then likely vote on the appointment at its regular meeting beginning at 2 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 24.
Here's the entire list of applicants released late this afternoon by Metro:
· Martha Dibblee, a retired health physicist and consultant who has served on the Energy Facility Siting Council and the board of the Climate Trust.
· Kenneth Heggem, a sales representative with Columbia Northwest Heating and board member of the Woodstock Neighborhood Association.
· Jonathan Levine, a former project manager with the University of Western States.
· Walt Nichols, a bookkeeper with Watson Plumbing Co. and chair of the Mt. Scott-Arleta Neighborhood Association. Nichols was an unsuccessful candidate for Portland City Council in 2010.
· Alesia Reese, a clerk with the U.S. Postal Service and member of the Parkrose School District board. She is also chair of the Woodland Park Neighborhood Association and the East Portland Parks Coalition.
· Shiprack, a labor relations consultant for Pac/West Communications who served in the Oregon House of Representatives from 1983 to 1995.
· Stacey, a consultant and former executive director of 1000 Friends of Oregon. He also served as chief of staff to Congressman Earl Blumenauer and as executive director of policy and planning for TriMet.