PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) – Mayor Ted Wheeler revealed Wednesday afternoon that he would not run for a third term after seven years in office.
In a public letter, Wheeler shared he would not be seeking reelection in 2024 – prompting city leaders like Commissioner Rene Gonzalez to share their thoughts on his decision.
“Thank you for your years of service to the state, county and city,” Gonzalez said on Twitter. “Few fully appreciate what your family has sacrificed for Portland in very difficult times. Look forward to our continued collaboration on the city’s recovery.”
Wheeler outlined his successes in the letter, saying his administration has “re-shaped” city government to “respond to an unprecedented number of simultaneous challenges related to homelessness, public safety, livability, and economic recovery.”
City Commissioner Dan Ryan said he supports the mayor’s decision as someone who has known Wheeler since before he became a father, adding that he respects that he has “chosen to make his daughter his priority.”
“The Mayor has led Portland through some very turbulent years, and I enjoy working with him on many complex issues facing our city,” Ryan said. “I thank him for his service and dedication to Portland. There is much work to do, and I look forward to continuing to work together.”
However, it is not yet clear whether Ryan plans to run for the position himself. His team told KOIN 6 a decision will be announced in January 2024.
The mayor said he made his decision knowing that “numerous qualified Portlanders” have announced their bid for office and that “their decision in part hinges” on his intentions – including Commissioner Mingus Mapps, who filed a notice of intent on July 3.
“Mayor Wheeler has been a dedicated public servant and has led Portland through a challenging time,” Mapps said. “He has made great sacrifices in his service to our city. I have enjoyed working with him on the City Council and consider him a friend.”
It is also not clear whether Commissioner Carmen Rubio plans to run for Portland Mayor, with her office adding that the decision “is second to the time and energy that needs to be spent on those urgent issues.” Rubio is expected to make a decision later this year.
“Commissioner Rubio is focused on the urgent issues facing our city – such as the need for more affordable housing options, community safety, and making progress on climate actions to meet our carbon reduction goals,” her office said in a statement.
Stay with KOIN 6 as this story develops.