PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Six female city employees filed complaints against former Portland Mayor Sam Adams while he worked under Mayor Ted Wheeler, according to a statement from Wheeler’s office.
Adams resigned from his position as Director of Strategic Innovations on Tuesday, Jan. 10, citing health issues. However, Wheeler claimed Adams was asked to step down following several complaints alleging Adams of bullying and intimidation.
In the statement to KOIN 6 News, the Mayor’s office said it received an email from Michael Montoya, the city’s Interim Director of the Office of Civic Life, on Aug. 10, 2021, with a concern about Adam’s behavior towards an employee. This prompted Wheeler’s Chief of Staff Bobby Lee to conduct separate interviews with the employee, Montoya and Adams.
Nearly a month after Wheeler’s office first learned of the allegations, Lee informed Montoya and others that a formal investigation was not being pursued.
In September of 2021, another complaint was made against Adams. Lee interviewed Adams once again and the complainant, who said she did not want a formal investigation, but wanted to make human resources aware of the incident.
According to the city, there were at least two other times during Adam’s most recent public tenure when the Bureau of Human Resources had to talk to him about his behavior.
Wheeler’s office said its human resources recommended ending Adams’ employment after taking the accounts of six employees into consideration.
Adams told KOIN 6 News last week that he didn’t know details about the complaints against him and called this “a knife in the back.” However, the city says Adams did know details about all of the complaints.
KOIN 6 has reached out to Sam Adams for a statement.