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Portland’s first African American city commissioner, Charles Jordan
Portland Parks & Recreation
Published: 16 August 2019

Portland Parks & Recreation invites the community to a birthday celebration for Charles Jordan, the former City Commissioner and Portland Parks Director. The celebration will take place on Saturday, August 31 from 12 p.m. to 3 p.m. at the Charles Jordan Community Center located at 9009 N. Foss Avenue.

Jordan was the first African American City Commissioner elected to the Portland City Council. Jordan died in 2014.

“My father’s passing left our family and our entire city with a tremendous void,” said Charles Jordan’s son Dion Jordan who will serve as the event emcee. “I’m honored to be a part of a celebration of his life. It’s fulfilling to honor his lifelong passions for children, families and the environment, and to come together as a city and a community.”

Portland Parks Director Adena Long will join Dion Jordan and other honored guests for a short program of celebration at the event.

The free celebration will feature games, plantings, arts and crafts, a building tour, health and wellness screenings, music, birthday cake, refreshments and more.

“Charles Jordan was a visionary leader, a mentor, and a friend,” said Commissioner Nick Fish.

“We are proud to honor his family and his legacy,” said Fish.

In June 2012, Portland City Council voted unanimously on a measure put forth by Commissioner Nick Fish to rename Portland Parks & Recreation’s University Park Community Center in honor of Charles Jordan.

The Charles Jordan Community Center was rededicated on Sunday, July 22, 2012, with a free public celebration, which Jordan attended.

Jordan’s book "More than Just Fun and Games" will be on sale at the event. All proceeds go towards scholarships for youth so they can take part in activities and classes at Charles Jordan Community Center.

Event partners include Portland Parks & Recreation, the Portland Parks Foundation (PP&R’s chief philanthropic partner), volunteers, the Jordan family, former PP&R Citywide Collaborative Services Manager Michelle Harper, and the New Columbia Community Campus Partnership.

Learn more about the event online.

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