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Aug-22-2012 15:03printcomments

Message from the Former Chairman of Oregon Commission on Black Affairs

Former Chairman was scheduled to remain on the commission until next year.

Former Black Affairs Chairman, Clifford Walker
Former Black Affairs Chairman, Clifford Walker

(PORTLAND, OR) - Two senior members of the Oregon Commission on Black Affairs received termination notices in June from the Office of Oregon State Governor, John Kitzhaber. Clifford Walker of Portland, and Willie Woolfolk of Medford, Oregon have in essence been muted; they no longer have a vocal public role in the future toward improving the lives of Oregon's African-American community and neither is quite sure why.

One fact is that both of these Commissioners made inquiries about activities in the government that questioned the integrity of other state agencies. This led to an interesting set of responses, all preceding their unexplained termination.

Former Chairman Walker was scheduled to remain on the commission until next year.

In response to the sudden loss of his senior position with the Oregon Commission on Black Affairs, former Chair Clifford Walker approached the Governor's Office and several other Oregon agencies attempting to learn what led to his inadvertent departure from a position that required Senate confirmation.

He penned this open letter published below.

Dear Oregonians:

My name is Clifford Walker

On June 14, 2012, Governor Kitzhaber notified me in an Email of my termination, effective immediately, on the Oregon Commission on Black Affairs (OCBA). I was serving a second term as Commissioner and the expiration of my term is November 2013. The Senate confirmed me to serve a three-year term.

An independent state official cannot be terminated, in my understanding of the law, without cause.

I have petitioned the Governor, Senate President Peter Courtney and the OCBA for an explanation of my early termination. I was not given a reason, nor a hearing, regarding the Governor’s action.

*Why did the Governor terminate my position; and

*Why has the Governor’s Office been reluctant to explain his action; but *More important, if there were any problems with my term as Commissioner, why was I not told and given an opportunity to respond?

Who provides the law? My civil rights have been violated by one or more people who are seated and are public officials in the State of Oregon, and this ought to be addressed.


Clifford Walker




Comments Leave a comment on this story.

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Reg Doty September 3, 2012 9:38 am (Pacific time)

Huffington Post

Reg Doty September 3, 2012 9:36 am (Pacific time)

Please get this story out. Smells like corruption to me!

Amanda August 24, 2012 10:53 pm (Pacific time)

It certainly is highly suspcious of law violations and race relatioms. It needs to be addressed, therefore pursue the issue....It does smells of bigotry

Concerned Oregonian August 22, 2012 5:38 pm (Pacific time)

This seems very significant, what possible purpose does the Gov have for taking this step when so many questions in Oregon centering around bigotry exist, without being addressed?

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