The City of Oregon City’s Mayor, Rachel Lyles Smith, submitted her resignation on March 30, 2022 which will go into effect April 22, 2022. In a statement the mayor said that she is moving out of state to be closer and spend more time with family. Mayor Lyles Smith leaves with mixed emotions and has been proud of the many accomplishments and positive changes she and City Commissioners have made. She recognized the Oregon City staff as dedicated and hard working and shared her gratitude for the efforts City workers make to build a community that many love to live and work in.
City Commissioner, Denyse McGriff said, "Over the last two years, the Commission has worked together as a team. Rachel has embraced this and our community has benefited for this. She has led by example and shown that our differences have made us stronger in our mutual respect for one another, our amazing staff and members of our citizens. I remain committed to continuing those principles. I will miss working with her on behalf of our City."
Lyles Smith served on the South Fork Water Board, Clackamas County Coordinating Committee (C4), C4 Metro Subcommittee, Metro Policy Advisory Committee, Budget Committee, Urban Renewal Commission, Willamette Falls Legacy Project, liaison to Citizen Involvement Committee and Enhancement Grant Committee in her tenure as an elected official.
“Rachel restored dignity and respect to the mayor’s office and has provided steady leadership amid an otherwise tumultuous period for our city. In doing so, she has set a high bar for whoever takes her place. Working with her has been a privilege, and I wish her all the best in her future endeavors. We are a better city because of Mayor Lyles Smith’s leadership,” said Oregon City Commissioner Adam Marl.
Lyles Smith took office in January 2019 as a City Commissioner and was elected Oregon City’s Mayor, on April 7, 2021 through a special election to fill former Mayor Dan Holladay’s term. The Mayoral term will end in December 2022.
Lyles Smith’s early resignation creates a vacancy which will require the City to hold a special election at the next available date in August 2022.
Per the Oregon City Charter, the Commission President shall have and exercise the power to perform all duties of the mayor. Commission President Denyse McGriff will assume the mayoral duties, as identified in the Oregon City Charter, after Mayor Lyles Smith’s resignation becomes effective on April 22, 2022.
The City Commission is comprised of five members elected by positions, in staggered general election years, with the Mayor elected independently of the four commissioners. In November 2022, two commission positions (number 1 and 4), as well as the position of mayor will be open for election. This appointment will be in effect immediately after the vote of the City Commission and until the first City Commission meeting in January 2023. All elected City Council members hold four-year terms and are volunteers.