Interview with Don Baham

Ken recently sat down with Dr. Ken Baham at Tualatin Valley Community TV to talk about his life and his campaign.

League of Women Voter’s Video

Here’s Ken’s video with the League of Women Voters. He talks about why he would be the best choice for the Board of Commissioners … and he’s right!

Why vote for Ken? Here are some compelling reasons!

(Click each heading to see the description.)

A Strong Sense of Integrity

I have a very simple, old-fashioned code I live by: When you give your word you keep it. I believe in being straight forward with people and holding no hidden agendas. The best way to resolve problems with people, to negotiate with them, you must be trusted to mean what you say.

Common Sense

As one who has spent many years working for the betterment of the communities in which I have lived, I have found simple, mutually beneficial solutions are generally not too difficult to find between people of good will. It is incumbent upon elected officials to find those solutions and not get polarized in ideological warfare. My record locally on Clackamas River Water District is testament to that approach. Working with my fellow board members and board members from other jurisdictions has resulted in problem solving to our mutual benefit at little cost to the rate payers, saving at least a quarter of a million dollars in legal fees.

A Fiscal Hawk

I believe government’s role is to make peoples’ lives better within a framework of responsibility for the tax payers’ money. While no system, public or private is perfect, those of us in government have special responsibility inasmuch as we are using other peoples’ hard earned money. On every board I have served, I have been the “fiscal hawk.” For example, the agreement between Sunrise Water Authority and Clackamas River Water — We have saved ratepayers over $160,000 in our first year by combining resources and staff for more efficiency.

Broad Experience in Public Service

My career was in law enforcement. I have also been a school teacher and firefighter. I served in the United States Marine Corps. I have held public office as a mayor, school board member, fire board member, as well as several economic development agencies. I currently serve as president of the Clackamas River Water Board and as a member of the Clackamas County Economic Development Commission. My resume is available on this website and on my campaign Facebook page.

Rural Roots

My wife, Graciela, and I owned a small horse ranch in a rural, ranching area. There were other horse and cattle ranchers as well as dry land farming of oat hay. Living there you learn to appreciate the hard work of farmers and ranchers and develop a closeness to the land. Making a living in the city you realize how few people understand where their food comes from and the important work of the farmers and ranchers. In the vast majority of cases they are the best stewards of the land — they make a living from it.

Urban Experience

While we had the privilege of living in a quiet rural community, I worked in an urban one. I recognize the need for good education systems, efficient transportation for commuters and movement of goods, regional planning and the consequences of little or no planning. I also saw the people who fall through the cracks of society and the necessity of social services to help them get back on their feet. Sometimes it was an abused wife, a former soldier with PTSD, or someone with drug and alcohol problems; they all need our help.

Extensive Law Enforcement Experience

I spent over 23 years in law enforcement. And, yes, I’ve seen it all. Our society, like any, has its problems. Those problems are almost always the direct result of poverty, limited opportunity, poor education, and broken families. It is also the result of people making poor choices. Individuals have to be held accountable for their actions but we, as a society, need to understand root causes.

USMC Veteran

I was about 15 when I heard President Kennedy’s call to service. I was privileged to wear the uniform of the United States Marine Corps, and I have spent my life answering that that call. I believe that our finest moments as people and as a nation are when we work together to build better communities, which strengthen our nation. Today there are those who have served that need our help. I hope to work with my colleagues on the County Board of Commissioners to provide the services they need. Some say “you can’t help them all” — maybe not, but we can help some. And every one that we do is a victory for us all!! Semper Fi!

Working Together to Make It Better

With that knowledge, and by working together, we can reduce crime and make our communities safer and better. I have seen many people rise above themselves, regardless of their past, to help others when needed; that includes what you might call the worst among us. Seeing those actions, I retain the hope that we can all do better and that few people are lost causes.

I am stepping forward because I am confident in my abilities and the energies I bring to public office. I am ready to roll up my sleeves and get to work. I will need your help. Call me at 503-442-2011 to get involved or to be in touch.