Former Medford Mayor Densmore challenges Roberts for Jackson Co. Commission

JACKSON COUNTY, Ore.– Two of the three seats on the Jackson County Board of Commissioners are up for grabs next month.

One of the races features former Medford Mayor Al Densmore, challenging two-term Commissioner Colleen Roberts.

Roberts said her experience as a commissioner is what sets her apart from Densmore.

Densmore, a former democrat who is running as an independent, said he wants to bring new ideas and perspectives to the board of commissioners.

“The job of a county commissioner should be focusing on non-partisan approaches,” he said.

Former State Legislator, Medford Mayor and City Councilor Al Densmore wants to bring change to Jackson County.

He’s running as an independent against Colleen Roberts, one of three commissioners on the all-republican board.

Densmore said, “there really isn’t a red or a blue way to do county public health, or public safety, or roads, or homelessness. Those are things that should be beyond party.”

Roberts has served as a commissioner for the last eight years.

She points to her experience on the board as to why she thinks she’s the best candidate.

“I have a proven track record of representing the people and the businesses and the families of Jackson County,” she said.

Last summer, Densmore joined several other current and former Jackson County leaders in calling on county commissioners to take an active leadership role and to speak out more about the COVID crisis in the county.

Commissioner Roberts said she stands by the boards stance on COVID.

“I adamantly stood for our businesses and our families and people against the overreach of the mandates. I just feel our medical decisions are our own,” she said.

Another stark difference between the candidates, Densmore wants to expand the board of commissioners from three members to five.

He said the county’s growing population should be reflected in its’ government.

“Having them elected by different parts of the county would allow us to make sure that no matter where you live in the county, no matter what your issues are, there’s someone on the county commission that can work for you,” he said.

Roberts argues expanding the board would cost tax payers and wouldn’t be easy.

“It changes our county charter, it has to be done by a ballot initiative, and a vote of the people,” she said.

Republican Commissioner Rick Dyer is also being challenged for his seat on the board by Democrat Denise Krause.

The deadline to vote is November 8th.

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Former NBC5 News reporter Derek Strom is from Renton, Washington. He recently graduated from the Edward R. Murrow College of Communications at Washington State University with a degree in Broadcast News and a minor in Sports Management. He played in the drumline with the WSU marching band. These days, he plays the guitar and piano. Derek is a devoted fan of the Mariners, Seahawks, and Kraken.
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