Oregon Women of Achievement

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The Oregon Commission for Women established the Oregon Women of Achievement in 1985 to recognize the accomplishments of Oregon women and to demonstrate appreciation for their endeavors.[1] Qualifying candidates to be nominated for the Oregon Women of Achievement are exemplary role models who promote the status of women in society, are committed to diversity and equity and have earned recognition for success and leadership in their fields.[2] As of 2013, 81 women have been honored by the Oregon Commission for Women.[1]


Oregon Women of Achievement
Name Image Birth–Death Year Area of achievement
Katz, VeraVera Katz Vera Katz.jpg (1933–) 1985 First woman to serve as Speaker of the Oregon House of Representatives and the 49th mayor of Portland
Roberts, BarbaraBarbara Roberts Governor Barbara Roberts.jpg (1936–) 1986 34th Governor of Oregon from 1991 to 1995
Paulus, NormaNorma Paulus Norma Paulus 2008.jpg (1933–) 1986 Oregon Secretary of State and Oregon Superintendent of Public Instruction
Ryles, NancyNancy Ryles Nancy Ryles 1979.jpg (1937–1990) 1987 Served in the Oregon House of Representatives, the Oregon Senate and as one of three members of the Oregon Public Utility Commission
Hammer, SusanSusan Hammer 1987 Attorney and mediator[3]
Congdon, MarshaMarsha Congdon 1988 Vice President of Policy and Strategy at US West and director of Mentor Graphics[4]
Roberts, BettyBetty Roberts Betty Roberts Senate campaign.jpg (1923–2011) 1988 83rd Associate Justice of the Oregon Supreme Court
Roberts, Mary WendyMary Wendy Roberts 1989 Daughter of Frank L. Roberts and member of the Oregon House of Representatives and the Oregon State Senate; served as Commissioner of Labor and Industries from 1979 to 1995[5]
Wilgenbusch, NancyNancy Wilgenbusch 1989 President of Marylhurst University from 1984 to 2008[6]
Parr-Sandoz, ClariceClarice Parr-Sandoz 1990 Member of the Walla Walla tribe[7]
Sheng, Y. SherryY. Sherry Sheng 1990 President Clackamas County Master Gardeners; former director Seattle Aquarium[8]
Le Guin, Ursula K.Ursula K. Le Guin UrsulaLeGuin.01.jpg (1929–) 1991 Author of novels, children's books, and short stories, mainly in the genres of fantasy and science fiction
Shibley, GailGail Shibley 1991 First openly gay member of the Oregon House of Representatives; served on the Portland Planning Commission[9]
Helms, SusanSusan Helms Helms sj4.jpg (1958–) 1992 Lieutenant General in the United States Air Force and a former NASA astronaut
Biggs, JoanJoan Biggs 1992
Aiken, AnnAnn Aiken (1951–) 1993 Attorney and jurist
Smith, TriciaTricia Smith 1993 Government Relations Specialist for Oregon School Employees Association
Armatta, JudithJudith Armatta 1993 Lawyer, journalist and human rights activist. Legal counsel to the Oregon Coalition Against Domestic and Sexual Violence. During 2002–2005 she represented the Coalition for International Justice monitoring the Trial of Slobodan Milošević.[10][11][12]
Ford, Mary AliceMary Alice Ford (1935–2008) 1994 Pro-choice Republican who served in the Oregon House of Representatives for 15 consecutive years representing Washington County
Jaramillo, AnnabelleAnnabelle Jaramillo 1994 Former Executive Director of the Oregon Commission on Hispanic Affairs; Benton County Commissioner[13]
Lowe, EllenEllen Lowe 1994 Board member and commissioner; Public Policy Director for Ecumenical Ministries of Oregon; advocate for low-income Oregonians[14]
Stevenson, JanetJanet Stevenson (1913–2009) 1994 Writer and professor. Stevenson served as Mayor of Hammond, Oregon.[15][16]
Evers-Williams, MyrlieMyrlie Evers-Williams Myrlie Evers-Williams.jpg (1933–) 1995 Civil rights activist and journalist who worked tirelessly to seek justice for the murder of her well-known civil rights activist husband Medgar Evers in 1963[17]
Brown, KateKate Brown Oregon Secretary of State Kate Brown, cropped.jpg (1960–) 1995 Oregon Secretary of State and former member of the Oregon Senate
Middle, DianneDianne Middle 1996 Attorney and Director of the Department of Public Safety Standards and Training
Perrin, CherylCheryl Perrin 1996 Executive Director of Campaign for America and Trustee at Lewis and Clark College[18]
Ramaley, JudithJudith Ramaley (1941–) 1996 Former president of Portland State University
Carter, MargaretMargaret Carter (1935–) 1997 Served in the Oregon State Senate and the Oregon House of Representatives
Hinrichs, Patricia DavisPatricia Davis Hinrichs 1997 Attorney
Fox-Edwards, NellieNellie Fox-Edwards 1997 Former political director of the Oregon AFL-CIO
Bedford, Amy AldrichAmy Aldrich Bedford (1912–2006) 1998 Co-owner of the East Oregonian[19]
Clarno, BevBev Clarno 1998 Speaker of the Oregon House of Representatives[20]
Kilbourn, Joan PriscillaJoan Priscilla Kilbourn (1936–2011) 1998 Microbiologist, educator[21]
Gordly, AvelAvel Gordly Avel Gordly in 2011.jpg (1947–) 1999 First African-American woman to be elected to the Oregon State Senate[22]
Harrison, Kathryn JaneKathryn Jane Harrison (1924–) 1999 Tribal leader from the Confederated Tribes of the Grand Ronde Community of Oregon[23]
O’Neil, Katherine HuffKatherine Huff O’Neil 1999 Attorney and member of the ABA Board of Governors[24]
Bloom, ElmoElmo Bloom 2000 Manager of the Hermiston Neighborhood Center and developer of a successful senior meal program[25]
Hill, RoslynRoslyn Hill 2000 Developer nicknamed the "Queen of Alberta" for her efforts to revitalize Alberta Street in Northeast Portland[26]
Shaffer, SueSue Shaffer 2000 Tribal leader of the Cow Creek Band of Umpqua Tribe of Indians[27]
Boston, ClarinerClariner Boston 2001 Executive Director of Better People[28]
Hallock, Margaret JeanMargaret Jean Hallock 2001 Economist and founding director of the Wayne Morse Center for Law and Politics at the University of Oregon[29]
Margerum, KathleenKathleen Margerum 2001 Member of the Florence Area Coordinating Council[30]
Ashbrook, ConnieConnie Ashbrook 2002 Founding member and the executive director of the non-profit Oregon Tradeswomen, Inc.[31]
Castillo, SusanSusan Castillo 2002 Oregon Superintendent of Public Instruction and member of the Oregon State Senate. Castillo was the first Latina in the Oregon Legislative Assembly.[32]
Jensen, KatherineKatherine Jensen 2002 Writer and certified Nurse Midwife[33]
Lee, PhyllisPhyllis Lee 2003 Director of Multicultural Affairs at Oregon State University[34]
Rosenbaum, DianeDiane Rosenbaum (1949–) 2003 Majority Leader of the Oregon State Senate[34]
Ness, JerralynnJerralynn Ness 2003 Anti-poverty activist[34]
Brown-Kline, JoanJoan Brown-Kline 2004 Executive director of the Washington and Multnomah counties program of Oregon CASA; former president and owner of Brown-Kline & Company[35]
Burton, VictoriaVictoria Burton 2004 Helped build the Crisis Response Teams for the Portland Police Bureau[36]
Young, MarthaMartha Young (–2006) 2004 Executive Director for the Cow Creek Umpqua Indian Foundation[37]
Brenner, JohannaJohanna Brenner 2005 Professor and coordinator of the women's studies program at Portland State University[38]
Isom, HarrietHarriet Isom 2005 Former U.S Ambassador to Benin and Cameroon[39]
St. Clair, Serena OtaSerena Ota St. Clair 2005 Professor and Pathways and Articulation Coordinator at Rogue Community College in Southern Oregon[40]
Dodson, DonaldaDonalda Dodson 2006 Executive Director of the Oregon Child Development Coalition[41]
Palmateer, JoanJoan Palmateer 2006 Assistant Director for Facility Operations for the Oregon Youth Authority[42]
Pancake, CherriCherri Pancake 2006 Professor and Intel Faculty Fellow at the School of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at Oregon State University[43]
Overstreet, MaryMary Overstreet 2007 Pastor and founder of the Power House Temple Church[44]
Ramirez, CarmenCarmen Ramirez 2007 Farm worker and board member with PCUN[45]
Schuette, GretchenGretchen Schuette 2007 Former president of Chemeketa Community College[46]
Golden, NancyNancy Golden 2008 Superintendent of Springfield Public Schools and Education Advisor to Governor Kitzhaber[47]
Hooley, DarleneDarlene Hooley Darlene hooley.jpg (1939–) 2008 Former member of the U.S. House of Representatives who represented Oregon's 5th congressional district[48]
Sherwood, SydneySydney Sherwood 2008 Executive Director of Tigard Chamber of Commerce
Wilson, Keren BrownKeren Brown Wilson 2008 Gerontology professor at Portland State University's Institute on Aging[49]
Boyle, GertGert Boyle Gert Boyle in 2013.jpg 2009 Chair of Columbia Sportswear[50]
Schnitzer, ArleneArlene Schnitzer 2009 Patron of the arts and philanthropist alongside her husband Harold Schnitzer; namesake of the Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall[51]
Kafoury, GretchenGretchen Kafoury (1942–) 2010 Representative in the Oregon Legislative Assembly, Multnomah County Commission and the Portland City Council[52][53]
Rose, MelodyMelody Rose 2010 Vice Provost for Academic Programs and Instruction at Portland State University; Founder and Director of The Center for Women, Politics & Policy[53][54]
Tillman, LatriciaLatricia Tillman 2010 Administrator for the Oregon Office of Multicultural Health and Services[53]
Ginsberg, JillJill Ginsberg 2011 Medical director of the North by Northeast Community Health Center[55]
Lubchenco, JaneJane Lubchenco LubchencoJane-NOAA.jpg (1947–) 2011 Environmental scientist and marine ecologist[56]
Saks, MinaleeMinalee Saks 2011 Founder and Executive Director of the Birth To Three parenting program[57]
Sullivan, RitaRita Sullivan 2011 Executive Director of OnTrack, a chemical dependency treatment organization[58]
Collin, Robin MorrisRobin Morris Collin 2012 Law professor at Willamette University[59]
O'Keefe, JaneJane O'Keefe 2012 Vice-chair of the Oregon Environmental Quality Commission[60]
Warren, GinaGina Warren 2012 Vice President of Global Diversity and Inclusion for Nike, Inc.[61]
Wesley, Serena StoudamireSerena Stoudamire Wesley 2012 Coalition of Communities of Color
Denhart, GunGun Denhart 2013 Businesswoman, founder of Hanna Andersson[62]
Eaton, Mary KatherineMary Katherine Eaton 2013 Women's rights and clean government activist[62]
Giron, CeciliaCecilia Giron 2013 Mentor[62]
North, SheilaSheila North 2013 Former Executive Director of De Paul Treatment Centers[62]


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