It is interesting that they didn't hire someone who currently lives in Eugene or in Salem, the primary cities in the area of responsibility. That's not necessarily a problem of course. The announcement notes that Becky Gilliam worked at the Legislature, and counts as something of an insider, ready for the lobbying side of things. (Also likely related to former State Legislator Vic Gilliam of Silverton, so maybe more than a little bit of an insider.)
But there might be local knowledge about the schools, neighborhoods, and politics of Salem and Eugene she will need to learn. Still, those are just details. The big picture is that there will be a consistent presence here now advocating and organizing for children and better ways to walk, bike, and roll to school.
From the announcement:
Becky serves as a Pacific Northwest Regional Policy Manager, working to strengthen the regional network in the Pacific Northwest, with a particular focus in Salem-Keizer and Central Lane areas. In this role, she works to increase funding and improve policies that result in improved infrastructure and programs to support safe walking and bicycling for children and families, with focused work and technical assistance in lower-income communities.
Prior to joining the National Partnership, Becky worked for over 4 years in Oregon's State Capitol. As senior legislative staff, she conducted policy research and coordinated introduction of new legislation relating to elder abuse prevention, increased protections for immigrants, and other issues. Becky also has experience lobbying in Salem, where she advocated for client interests in both the legislative and regulatory arenas. Through her time spent working with the Oregon Legislature and state agencies, Becky has established lasting relationships with key decision-makers.
Becky received her BA in Applied Linguistics, as well as Certification in Teaching English as a Second Language (TESL) from Portland State University. During her time at PSU, she designed and implemented community-based ESL programs for refugee and immigrant populations in Portland.
Becky lives in Silverton, where she and her husband recently completed a DIY home building project, which they now happily call home. Becky enjoys growing food and flowers, traveling, and going on adventures with her hound dog.