Roseburg Mayor Larry Rich

Roseburg Mayor Larry Rich at a council meeting April 10.

This November, residents of all the cities in Douglas County will choose their mayors and city councilors. In some cities, the familiar names of incumbents will fill the ballot, while in others voters will have some tough choices to make.

Here’s the information we’ve gathered about who filed for those seats by this week’s deadline:


Voters in Wards 2 and 4 will have to choose between multiple Roseburg City Council candidates this November, while voters in Wards 1 and 3 will not. Longtime Mayor Larry Rich will run unopposed for re-election, as will Ward 1 Councilor Alison Eggers. In Ward 3, Bob Cotterell is running unopposed for the seat he held before John McDonald was elected in 2014. McDonald isn’t seeking re-election.

Ward 2 voters will choose between incumbent Councilor Tom Ryan, a retired police officer who has served on the council for 20 years, and former Councilor Marty Katz, a retired downtown businessman who served on the council between 2012 and 2015.

Ward 4 voters will choose between three women, retired parole officer Bev Cole, downtown business owner Kristi Rifenbark and NeighborWorks Umpqua resident service coordinator Ruth Smith. The winner will take over from Steve Kaser, who is not running for re-election. The winner will become the fifth woman on the council, giving women a majority on the board.



Incumbent Sutherlin Mayor Todd McKnight, an Oregon Department of Transportation enforcement officer, is running for a third term in November. He’s unopposed.

Three candidates have filed for three open council seats. One is incumbent Councilor Michelle Sumner, a social services manager who was appointed to fill the remainder of the term left by Dennis Riggs, who resigned in June. Sumner previously served on the planning and budget committees. Another is incumbent Councilor Tom Boggs, retired Sutherlin police chief who volunteers driving veterans to Eugene and Portland appointments. The third is Becky Wattles, a loan officer and banker who has served on the budget committee for three years.


In Oakland, Mayor Bette Keehley is running for re-election and will face challenger Edward Messmer. Keehley has been Oakland’s mayor since 2007. She is a retired division manager for Sacramento Superior Court. Messmer is a retired physician assistant with no prior governmental experience.

City Councilors Craig Riley and Janice Wier are seeking re-election to two at-large positions. They face two challengers, Terry Knowlton and Douglas Lee Foust.

Riley has been on the Oakland City Council since 2014. He is retired from 50 years in the roofing industry and is a past president of the Associated Roofing Contractors of Washington State.

Wier has served eight years on the City Council. She is a retired nurse and firefighter who worked for Riverside County, California before moving to Oakland in 2007.

Knowlton is an independent contractor, a former craft superintendent and project engineer for Peter Kiewit and Sons and former project foreman for Laskey Clifton. He has no prior governmental experience.

Foust is a semi-retired independent builder and contractor. He has previously served as the treasurer of Oakland Economic Development.


There’s a three-way race for mayor in Yoncalla, with current Mayor Jerry Cross retiring. Medical assistant Micki Vroman, teacher’s assistant Amanda Stroud, and 18-year-old Umpqua Community College student Benjamin Simons are running for mayor.

Micki Vroman’s father Gene Vroman is running for city councilor position 1. He retired as Yoncalla public works supervisor in July and is unopposed.

Incumbent Ward 3 Councilor David Vian is unopposed in his run for re-election.


City Councilor Justin Cobb is running unopposed for mayor, while newcomers Tim Addison and Michael Hogsett are running for council positions 2 and 4, respectively.


In Elkton, three incumbent councilors are running unopposed for re-election. They are Ryan Fall, Kim Moore and Joan Smith. There is also one open position for which no one filed. The mayoral position is not up for election this year.


Incumbent Mayor Linda McCollum is running unopposed for re-election.

Incumbent Ellen Lee Anderson, who was appointed to the council in March, will face challenger Joe Liedtky for councilor position 1. Anderson is a former nurse, bookkeeper and web page designer. She is a volunteer for Dial-a-Ride and the Project Blessing Food Pantry. Liedtky designed accounting software for Sears and has been active with the Fraternal Order of Eagles and the Pacific Dunes Moose Lodge.

Incumbents Mark Bedard, Richard Patten and Debby Turner are running unopposed for Reedsport City Council positions 4, 5 and 6, respectively.



Incumbent Mayor Dick Hayes will face challenger Gary Vess in November. Hayes was appointed mayor to replace Kenneth Barrett, who was arrested in 2017 and convicted this year of online sexual corruption of a minor and unlawful possession of a firearm. Hayes, a retired builder and developer, served on the city council for about 15 years before being appointed. Vess is retired from the Oregon Department of Transportation and serves on the local school and water district boards. He is also a previous city councilor.

Two incumbent city councilors are also running for re-election to their seats. They are Dorie White and Scott Rutter.


No one filed to run for mayor of Myrtle Creek.

Incumbent Henry Stevens is running unopposed for re-election to city council position 2, while position 4 will see a race between Julie Peterson and Kathryn Otero. Peterson has been involved with promoting Myrtle Creek through the Bring ‘Em In Committee, while Otero is connected with the South Douglas Food Bank.


Riddle has no contested races in the upcoming election. Mayor William Duckett, who has served in that role for 24 years, is running unopposed for re-election. Two incumbent city councilors, home health care provider Shira Randall and Umpqua Bank Canyonville branch manager Jane Mitchell, are running unopposed for positions 2 and 5, respectively. The only other opening is for city council position 1, but no one has filed for that seat. Riddle City Manager Kathleen Wilson said in an email that position 1 could be filled by a write-in candidate. If there isn’t one, the council will appoint someone to fill the seat.


Incumbent Jake Young is running unopposed for mayor of Canyonville. His son and incumbent Councilor Rusty Young, a firefighter and paramedic, is also running for re-election. He is one of three candidates for three positions. Newcomer Dana Byrd, a casino buyer for Seven Feathers Casino Resort is running, and so is Marilyn Loomis, who had previously served on the council but isn’t currently in office.


In Glendale, Mayor Adam Jones and Councilors Audina Jephson, Lucille Martin and Allen King are running for re-election. All are unopposed.

Reporter Carisa Cegavske can be reached at 541-957-4213 or

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Senior Reporter

Carisa Cegavske is the senior reporter for The News-Review. She can be reached at 541-957-4213 or by email at Follow her on Twitter @carisa_cegavske

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