After a decade as a Portland city commissioner, Randy Leonard will say goodbye to City Hall at the end of this year. Leonard served in both chambers of the Oregon Legislature before he was elected as a city commissioner. He started his career at the city in the fire bureau, where he worked his way up to a lieutenant. As a parting gift, the city is naming a fire station in his honor.
Leonard has been in charge of the Portland Water Bureau since 2005. He’s seen the bureau through a particularly tumultuous period, fighting against EPA regulations that would require the city to treat its water to guard against cryptosporidium. The next battle the bureau is facing is fluoridation, which Leonard voted for along with the rest of the council. Since opponents of fluoridation collected enough signatures to force a referendum vote, this is a fight that will continue after Leonard leaves office.
Randy Leonard has certainly seen his share of controversy beyond the water bureau. From taping off prime Rose Parade-watching real estate to his clashes with former police chief Rosie Sizer, Leonard has shown he’s not one to shy away from a confrontation. He’s become known as a straight talker, which has probably made him as many friends as it has enemies.
What questions do you have for Randy Leonard? What will you remember most about his time as city commissioner?