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Former Sheriff Craig Roberts announces campaign for County Chair

NEWS RELEASE: Former Sheriff Craig Roberts announces campaign for County Chair in front of a crowd of more than 150 people

At a packed event at the Abernathy Center in Oregon City on Wednesday, October 25, 2023, former Sheriff Craig Roberts announced his formal filing to become Clackamas County’s next Chair.

Prominent business and community leader Dr. Shirish Patel, who introduced Roberts to the crowd, said, “Clackamas County is in desperate need of more transparent, ethical and financially responsible leadership. Craig Roberts has the record of leadership, integrity and getting things done that we want in our next Clackamas County Chair.”

Roberts, who served as Clackamas County’s 32nd Sheriff from January 2005 through the end of 2020, told the crowd, “County leadership must do a better job of working together to overcome the challenges facing our County. I’ve devoted my life to keeping our community safe, livable, and improving people’s lives, and I am deeply honored by the trust Clackamas County voters placed in me over my 16 years as your Sheriff. Now more than ever, Clackamas County needs leadership that is transparent, respectful, financially responsible, and willing to listen to you.  As your Chair, I will work with you and my fellow commissioners to ensure our county government is as good as the people it serves.”  

Oregon Senator Mark Meek said, “What is truly impressive about Craig’s kick-off event is that the entire community was represented at it – every walk of life, every part of the community.  People who may agree on very little else, agree that Craig Roberts is the clear choice, and the leadership Clackamas County needs right now.”

WORDS OF SUPPORT

“Craig Roberts has always been a champion for care and treatment of people with mental health issues in our community,” said Martha Spiers, former long-time manager of Clackamas County’s Behavioral Health Crisis and SafetyNet Programs. “We need leaders that understand the urgency of coordinating care for mental health systems and that a lack of care impacts the safety of people with mental illness. Craig is that leader.”

“As Sheriff, Craig Roberts has gone above and beyond to protect victims of domestic violence and abuse,” said Brian Maher, Past Board President of Clackamas Women’s Services.

“Craig understands the impact issues like violence, addiction and homelessness have on children and families. Partnering with Clackamas Women’s Services, he brought Oregon’s first family justice center to Clackamas County, called “A Safe Place. We need leaders like Craig who will build partnerships to find creative, effective ways to continue to protect our most vulnerable.”

Roberts’ campaign priorities include accountability and transparency, economic growth, livability, protecting children and families, and focused solutions to addiction and homelessness.

Roberts is committed to restoring integrity, accountability and financial responsibility to Clackamas County.

ABOUT CRAIG ROBERTS

Born and raised in Clackamas County, Craig Roberts’ four-decade career in law enforcement included four terms as Clackamas County Sheriff, from January 2005 through the end of 2020.

During his 16 years as Sheriff, Roberts successfully made several improvements on the local and statewide level that focused on our youth, individuals with mental illness, and those struggling with addiction.

Children’s Center

When Roberts was a detective, he worked at Legacy Emanuel Medical Center at CARES NW, a child abuse assessment center. It was during that time he saw the need for a child abuse center right here in Clackamas County.   He organized local leaders to create the county’s first child abuse assessment center, called the Children’s Center. 

A Safe Place

Roberts saw that family violence was having a devastating impact on children and families.  He collaborated with Clackamas Women’s Services and other partners dedicated to helping domestic violence survivors, to create A Safe Place, family justice center in Oregon City.  The center provides a cross section of services to survivors and their families, and survivors of elder abuse.

Clackamas Substance Abuse Program (CSAP)

As Sheriff, Roberts helped build a successful in-patient drug and alcohol treatment program for adults in custody called the Clackamas Substance Abuse Program (CSAP).  The treatment program has 80-beds where clients are typically involved from 18-24 months.  About 88% of CSAP graduates stay sober and are not re-arrested.   Roberts also created the Transition Center, located directly across the street from the Clackamas County Jail. The Transition Center is designed to address homelessness, mental illness and addiction problems for those leaving jail and re-entering society. CSAP and the Transition Center share a common goal: ending the revolving door of incarceration and addressing issues that directly impact our communities.

Mental Health Transitional Housing

Through a partnership with Clackamas County Health, Housing, and Human Services, Roberts also helped launch transitional housing to help stabilize those struggling with mental illness and connect them with more permanent housing. One facility is for women, one for men, each with its own house manager.

“My motto as Sheriff was, ‘Working Together to Make a Difference,’” said Roberts. "Each and every program was a direct result of bringing key stakeholders together, developing a plan, and acting with urgency."

Campaign Event Photos


Media inquiries and interview requests can be directed to Sarah Crowther at 503-899-0883.