I am the new managing editor of the Star-News. Like many of you, I am an immigrant. I moved to Portland nearly 30 years ago after visiting friends here during summer vacations. In awe of the natural beauty surrounding and throughout the city, I couldn’t sit still. There were so many neighborhoods to explore, trails to hike, beers to sample. Ready to escape the narrow confines of my native mid-South, I experienced the Northwest as one delicious, continuous breath of fresh air.
Since then, I’ve lived in all four quadrants of the city: a tiny studio on Northwest 23rd across the street from Rose’s Deli; a spacious two-bedroom in Hillsdale, close by Baker and Spice; a Spanish-inflected cottage in Richmond, a short walk to Tom’s Restaurant; a 1920s bungalow in Sunnyside; and currently, a mid-century ranch in Madison South, where I can saunter down to Pho Oregon for the best in the state. I’ve seen the city evolve from relative obscurity to darling of the cultural elite, rightfully celebrated by the New York Times and others for its quirkiness, beer, coffee, bicycles, and food carts. I’ve survived Measure 9 and the other misbegotten mischief of the now defunct Oregon Citizens Alliance. I’ve also watched as the city has attracted around 150,000 more people from all corners of the country, straining at its seams (also known as the urban growth boundary). The experience has made me grateful for forward-thinking visionaries like Mayor Vera Katz, who saw the value in such “luxuries” as light rail and the Eastside Esplanade.
My favorite thing about Portland may be that, despite its stodgy and somewhat dodgy origins, it is now a place where difference itself is celebrated rather than mocked or scorned. The city is a magnet for all kinds of innovators, freethinkers, artists and oddballs. A place where a bright and progressive small bookstore owner can take on a City Council incumbent and, against all odds, actually win. Where a book isn’t judged solely on its cover.
In the coming months, you may see some changes in the Star-News, designed for clarity and ease of reading. We will continue to be the voice of North and Northeast’s neighborhoods, and you can rely on us for the latest on new business openings and development. If it’s happening in our coverage area, we would like know about it. As always, you can contact us at ofni.1508713102swen-1508713102rats@1508713102lairo1508713102tide1508713102 with questions or concerns, or to publicize an event of local interest. Let us know how we’re doing. We’d love to hear from you.
Dana Busch, managing editor