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Dec-17-2009 12:43printcomments

Brad Avakian Endorses John Kitzhaber

John Kitzhaber is a former two-term Governor of Oregon.

Former Oregon Gov. John Kitzhaber
Former Oregon Gov. John Kitzhaber

(SALEM, Ore.) - Oregon Labor Commissioner Brad Avakian announced his endorsement of John Kitzhaber for Governor today. Avakian joins Attorney General John Kroger, State Treasurer Ben Westlund and Superintendent of Public Instruction Susan Castillo in supporting Kitzhaber's campaign.

Kitzhaber has the support of every statewide elected official who has made an endorsement in the race.

"Governor Kitzhaber has an unparalleled record of standing up for everyday Oregonians and working families; I share his commitment to improving Oregon's economy and strengthening our workforce development system," said Commissioner Avakian.

Kitzhaber said, "I am honored by the support of Labor Commissioner Brad Avakian. He has been a pillar of integrity, strength and intelligence over his entire career in public service."

Raised in Washington County, Brad Avakian worked as a civil rights attorney for seventeen years. He was elected to the Oregon House of Representatives in 2002 and the Oregon State Senate in 2006.

During his tenure in the legislature, Avakian was honored by both the Oregon AFL-CIO and SEIU Local 503 for his work on behalf of working families, including winning passage of the sexual orientation non-discrimination law and toughening Oregon's smokefree workplaces law.

In 2007, the Oregon League of Conservation Voters named him the "Consensus Builder of the Year" for his strong, pro-environment leadership in enacting the Oregon Renewable Energy Act and the first Bottle Bill expansion in 30 years.

As State Labor Commissioner, Avakian oversees the Bureau of Labor and Industries, which works to promote the development of a highly skilled, competitive workforce in Oregon through apprenticeship programs and partnerships with government, labor, business, and educational institutions.

In addition, the Bureau works to protect the rights of workers and citizens to equal, non-discriminatory treatment; encourages and enforces compliance with state laws relating to wages, hours and terms and conditions of employment; and advocates policies that balance the demands of the workplace and employers with the protections of workers and their families.

John Kitzhaber is a former two-term Governor of Oregon. An emergency room physician from Roseburg by trade, he has also served in the Oregon House of Representatives and as the Oregon Senate President.

In his career he enacted many progressive reforms, including the Oregon Health Plan, the Oregon Education Act for the 21st Century, the Oregon Children's Plan, and the Oregon Salmon Plan. Since leaving office in 2002, he has continued to work on health care reform, natural resource issues and energy policy, leading several nonprofit foundations and boards.

Source: John Kitzhaber

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