Former Oregon Secretary of State Bill Bradbury died on Friday, April 14, 2023. He was 73 years old.
Bradbury was the state’s top election official for ten years, from 1999 to 2009. He led efforts that significantly increased the number of people who voted and made the government more open.
In 1980, he was chosen to the Oregon Legislature, which started his political journey. Bradbury was a member of both the House of Representatives and the Senate. In 1993, his fellow Democrats appointed him the Senate floor leader. Jeff Golden was his chief of staff at the time.
“Bill was a joyful, passionate man,” said Golden, now an Oregon state senator. “He decided his life would be about joy and service no matter what his body was doing. I always found that a profound inspiration,” Golden said.
Bradbury’s multiple sclerosis was a part of his life for over 40 years. On April 14, he died of health problems that were not expected.
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A message from Bradbury’s family says that he was on a six-month cruise around the world with his wife of 36 years, Katy Eymann. This was one of his lifelong dreams.
According to OPD, “His zest for life, his positive outlook, and his commitment to public service in his beloved Oregon are legendary,” the family statement said.
Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden, both U.S. senators from Oregon, talked about how optimistic Bradbury was and how he had a prolonged effect on state government.
Governor Tina Kotek also shares a tribute to Former Oregon Secretary of State Bill Bradbury, which is given below-
Secretary Bill Bradbury was a true warrior for the environment and a kind man of heart and humor. The First Lady and I are thinking of Katy and the family during this difficult time.
— Governor Tina Kotek (@GovTinaKotek) April 15, 2023
“My friend Bill Bradbury combined smarts and decency to exemplify the best of what it means to be a public servant, always working to make his beloved Oregon an even better place for everybody to live and work,” Sen. Wyden wrote on Twitter.
Bradbury’s impact includes making Oregon the first state in the country to have a vote-by-mail system. Since 2000, the number of people who vote has increased significantly because of this system.
He was in charge of starting ORESTAR, an online system that makes political campaign funds clear and easy to find. Bradbury is also known for prioritizing environmental problems and stream laws and discussing how climate change affects the world.
“Bill Bradbury may be gone, but he leaves a legacy in Oregon that will endure for generations. My heart is with all his loved ones during this difficult time,” Sen. Merkley wrote on Twitter.
The family of Bradbury said that a memorial event and party to honor his life would be planned and revealed later.
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