Portland Parks Employee Gregory Isaacson is Under Investigation After Confronting Commissioner Jo Ann Hardesty at Protest

Mayor Ted Wheeler said his office does not "tolerate threatening behavior."

Portland City Commissioner Jo Ann Hardesty listens to students during a March 20, 2019 protest of climate-change inaction. (Wesley Lapointe)

The city's Human Resources Bureau is investigating Gregory Isaacson, a Portland Parks & Recreation employee and right-wing activist, after he participated in a protest Feb. 22 during which Commissioner Jo Ann Hardesty was verbally harassed.

The mayor's office confirmed the investigation in an email to WW.

"This weekend, I learned of a disturbing incident that took place on Saturday," Mayor Ted Wheeler said in an email to WW. "My colleague [Hardesty] was subjected to verbal abuse and harassment by a group of demonstrators in Lownsdale Square. We do not tolerate threatening behavior."

The Portland Mercury first reported the confrontation in the park and subsequent investigation into Isaacson. Video from Saturday's  demonstration shows other protesters hurled obscenities at Hardesty while Isaacson, clad in his standard purple suit and bowler, watched from his bicycle.

As WW previously reported, Isaacson resigned Feb. 3 from his role as commander of American Legion Post 134 after his election drew waves of criticism from veterans.

Isaacson did not respond to WW's request for comment. Hardesty's office declined to comment on the matter.

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