David Bragdon

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David Bragdon
David Bragdon 2009.jpg
David Bragdon in 2009
Born(1959-06-20)June 20, 1959
Alma materHarvard,
Reed College
OccupationPolitician, Civic leader

David Bragdon (born June 20, 1959) is a politician and civic leader in the U.S. states of Oregon and New York. From 2003 to 2010, he was the elected president of the Metro Council, a regional government in the Portland metropolitan area. He served as Director of the Mayor's Office of Long-Term Planning and Sustainability in the administration of Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg of New York City.[1] He is currently executive director of Transit Center, Inc., a civic philanthropy which commissions and conducts research and advocacy related to urban transportation.[2]

Prior to entering public service, Bragdon worked in international trade and freight transportation in the private sector. He opened the first Nike office in Singapore where he oversaw the company's Southeast Asia shipping, worked as a maritime vessel agent at Columbia River ports, represented Evergreen Airlines,[3] in India and the Soviet Union, and worked as a marketing manager for the Port of Portland.[4] He also drove a taxicab in Portland for one year, in 2000.[3]

Bragdon ran for the Oregon House of Representatives in 1996, but lost to Chris Beck in the Democratic primary.[5][6]

Bragdon was first elected to the Metro Council as a district councilor in 1998. He was elected by the voters regionwide as the first Metro Council President in 2002, with 58 percent of the vote[7] (taking office January 2003), and was re-elected in 2006 without an opponent.[8] His accomplishments in office included the passage of a $227.4 million bond measure in 2006 which allowed tfor the preservation of thousands of acres of natural areas in Oregon. Because of this work he was rewarded the National Arbor Day excellence in Urban Forestry Leadership Award in 2010.[9]

Bragdon was rumored to be a leading potential candidate for Mayor of Portland in 2008, but in response to speculation that he would run, he issued a satirical press release disavowing intent to run for Mayor of Portland or of any other city in the region that year.[10] He is a train enthusiast,[3] and as a kid wrote a booklet for TriMet about bus riding and how to use the TriMet bus system.[11][12] He hosted a Sunday morning television show called "Outlook Portland" in 2008–09. He has also performed with Linda Austin’s Boris and Natasha Dancers in "Catnip" as part of the Dance United benefit for Oregon Ballet Theater at the Keller Auditorium.[13]

Bragdon is the oldest son of former Reed College president Paul Bragdon and educator Nancy Bragdon. He was 12 when his family moved from New York City to Portland.[4] His brother, Peter Bragdon, is a sportswear executive who was Oregon Governor Ted Kulongoski's chief of staff in the early 2000s.[14] His sister, Susan Bragdon, is an attorney specializing in intellectual property related for food and agriculture.[15]

Bragdon graduated from Harvard University with a bachelor's degree with honors in government in 1982 and obtained a Master of Arts in Liberal Studies from Reed College in 2009.[4][16]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Metro Council President David Bragdon Selected to Guide New York City's Urban Transformation" (Press release). Metro. August 11, 2010. Archived from the original on October 4, 2011. Retrieved July 24, 2011.
  2. ^ Mesh, Aaron (April 3, 2013). "David Bragdon Takes Transit Job in New York City". Willamette Week. Portland, Oregon. Retrieved March 16, 2015.
  3. ^ a b c Korn, Peter (April 9, 2009). "In Character with David Bragdon". Portland Tribune. Archived from the original on February 13, 2012. Retrieved June 30, 2017.
  4. ^ a b c Crombie, Noelle (August 11, 2010). "Metro Chief David Bragdon Leaving for Top New York City Post". The Oregonian. Portland, Oregon. Retrieved June 30, 2017.
  5. ^ "Oregon Secretary of State: Election History". oregonvotes.org. Retrieved December 12, 2017.
  6. ^ "Oregon Secretary of State: Election History". oregonvotes.org. Retrieved December 12, 2017.
  7. ^ "November 5, 2002, General Election – View Race Results". KATU. November 8, 2002. Archived from the original on November 25, 2002.
  8. ^ "An interview with Portland Metro Councilor David Bragdon". Daily Journal of Commerce. Portland, Oregon. December 15, 2006. Retrieved July 24, 2011.
  9. ^ "National Arbor Day Awards". Retrieved August 27, 2014.
  10. ^ "Bragdon not to run for mayor of any city in 2008" (Press release). December 1, 2007.
  11. ^ "14-year-old authors Tri-Met rider aid". The Oregonian, June 20, 1974, p. 18.
  12. ^ The Bus Rider's Manual, or Everything you always wanted to know about Tri-Met, but didn't know who to ask listing at Amazon.com.
  13. ^ Ames Carlin, Peter (May 26, 2009). "Taking modern dance to a place it's never been before". The Oregonian. Retrieved June 30, 2017.
  14. ^ "Neil's Network". Portland Tribune. May 21, 2004. Archived from the original on March 31, 2012.
  15. ^ Mortensen, Eric (June 22, 2009). "Puzzling personnel battle brews in Portland-area's Metro". The Oregonian. Retrieved June 30, 2017.
  16. ^ "DJC Newsmaker Award Winner, David Bragdon: Transportation Keeps". Daily Journal of Commerce. March 11, 2010. Retrieved July 24, 2011.

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