Multnomah County Commission is most diverse — Susheela Jayapal became the first Indian-American to hold an elected county office in Oregon on Thursday. Jayapal, who left India at 16 to attend college in the U.S., won a four-way race for an open seat on the Multnomah County Commission in May. With Jayapal’s election, the Multnomah County Commission remains all-female and the most diverse in the state, with a Mexican-American member and a Korean-born one. A longtime leader of nonprofit and community groups, Jayapal told the large crowd at the ceremony she never planned to run for office but felt a “sense of urgency about the fact that the region has become unlivable for too many people.” Jayapal will represent north and northeast Portland. She ran on a platform that emphasized combating gentrification and homelessness, in part by providing rental assistance to help keep people in their homes. She also called for more focus on mental health and addiction treatment and for restorative justice programs in every school. Jayapal is the older sister of Pramila Jayapal, who represents the Seattle area in Congress. Before Jayapal, the first Indian-American to hold elected office in Oregon was Balwant Bhullar, who won a seat on the Fairview City Council in 2008 but stepped down after six months for health reasons; he, too, ran for election in 2018 and will again take a seat on the Fairview council this year.
Bald eagle killed — Oregon State Police Fish and Wildlife officers are seeking information on the person or people who shot and killed an adult bald eagle in Douglas County. OSP said Thursday the eagle was found shot in the neck with a small caliber rifle from Lower Cow Creek Road approximately 2 miles south of Doe Creek Road. The shooting happened sometime in November. The suspect was driving a newer red or maroon compact four-door truck — likely a Nissan Frontier or a similar model. Bald eagles are federally protected.