06-23-2018  6:20 pm      •     
The Skanner Report
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NEWS BRIEFS

AG Rosenblum Seeks Info from Oregonians

Oregon Attorney General seeks information on children separated from families at border ...

Community Forum: How Does Law Enforcement Interact With Vulnerable Populations?

Forum will focus on public safety and examine mental health and addiction issues ...

King County Council Recognizes Juneteenth

The Metropolitan King County Council recognizes a true 'freedom day' in the United States ...

Unite Oregon Hosts ‘Mourn Pray Love, and Take Action’ June 20

Community is invited to gather at Terry Schrunk Plaza at 6 p.m. on World Refugee Day ...

MRG Foundation Announces Spring 2018 Grantees

Recipients include Oregon DACA Coalition, Kúkátónón Children’s African Dance Troupe, Komemma Cultural Protection Association ...

Lawsuits allege racial profiling in Portland-area businesses

SALEM, Ore. (AP) — Several African Americans are suing big-box stores and restaurants in Oregon, claiming employees at those places wrongly accused them of stealing because they were "shopping while black."A Portland law firm has filed five lawsuits alleging racial profiling at businesses in...

Wildfire near Maupin more than doubles in size

MAUPIN, Ore. (AP) — A wildfire burning brush and grass near Maupin in north-central Oregon has more than doubled in size to 36 square miles (93 square kilometers).Fire officials say Saturday's efforts will include the use of helicopters to protect Maupin.The wind-driven wildfire is mostly...

Alaska city honors Guardsmen killed in crash after '64 quake

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — A month after the second most powerful earthquake ever was recorded, the Alaska port community of Valdez remained in ruins.A hulking Alaska National Guard cargo plane's mission April 25, 1964, was to deliver Gov. William Egan to oversee efforts to rebuild the town on...

The Latest: Alaska city unveils memorial to fallen Guardsmen

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — The Latest on an Alaska city honoring Guardsmen killed in crash after 1964 earthquake (all times local):1:40 p.m.Four men who died on a humanitarian mission to help rebuild an Alaska town following the second most powerful earthquake ever recorded have been honored...

OPINION

How Washington’s 'School Achievement Index' Became School Spending Index

New assessment categorizes schools not by quality of education, but level of funding officials believe they should receive ...

Black Mamas Are Dying. We Can Stop It.

Congresswoman Robin Kelly plans to improve access to culturally-competent care with the MOMMA Act ...

Hey, Elected Officials: No More Chicken Dinners...We Need Policy

Jeffrey Boney says many elected officials who visit the Black community only during the election season get a pass for doing nothing ...

Juneteenth: Freedom's Promise Still Denied

Juneteenth is a celebration of the de facto end of slavery, but the proliferation of incarceration keeps liberation unfulfilled ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

Lawsuits allege racial profiling in Portland-area businesses

SALEM, Ore. (AP) — Several African Americans are suing big-box stores and restaurants in Oregon, claiming employees at those places wrongly accused them of stealing because they were "shopping while black."A Portland law firm has filed five lawsuits alleging racial profiling at businesses in...

Racist tropes in Ramadan TV satires anger black Arabs

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — In an attempt to capitalize on what's become a ratings bonanza for Arabic satellite channels during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, two comedies struck the wrong chord with audiences when their lead actors appeared in blackface.Criticism was swift on...

Chaos on the border inflames GOP's split with Latinos

When more than 1,000 Latino officials __ a crop of up-and-coming representatives from a fast-growing demographic __ gathered in Phoenix last week, no one from the Trump administration was there to greet them.It marked the first time a presidential administration skipped the annual conference of the...

ENTERTAINMENT

Give up after scandals? Television history shows otherwise

NEW YORK (AP) — Say this about TV creators in 2018 — they don't give up easily.Three current shows — "Roseanne," ''Transparent" and "House of Cards" — have been crippled by scandal, but each plans to continue without their disgraced stars."The bottom line is...

Ornate NYC theater, used for years as a gym, to be restored

NEW YORK (AP) — For years, Long Island University's basketball team played in a French Baroque movie palace in downtown Brooklyn.The gilded wall fountains, plastered statuettes and towering, one-of-a-kind Wurlitzer organ pipes of the historic Paramount Theater were preserved by the...

Vinnie Paul, co-founder, drummer of Pantera, dies at 54

Vinnie Paul, co-founder and drummer of metal band Pantera, has died at 54.Pantera's official Facebook page posted a statement early Saturday announcing his death. The label of Hellyeah, his most recent group, confirmed the death but neither statement mentioned Paul's cause of death.His real name...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

AP PHOTOS: Germany salvages campaign on Day 10 of World Cup

MOSCOW (AP) — Germany midfielder Toni Kroos scored a dramatic late winner to come from behind and beat...

1 dead after attack at huge rally for Ethiopia's new PM

ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia (AP) — A thwarted attempt to hurl a grenade at Ethiopia's reformist new prime...

Sanders says she was told to leave Virginia restaurant

WASHINGTON (AP) — White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders was booted from a Virginia restaurant...

Stars flock to the Dior debut of Kim Jones at Paris menswear

PARIS (AP) — In a week marked by big debuts, it was designer Kim Jones' turn at Dior Men on Saturday.The...

US moves 100 coffins to inter-Korean border for war remains

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — The U.S. military said it moved 100 wooden coffins to the inter-Korean border to...

1 dead after attack at huge rally for Ethiopia's new PM

ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia (AP) — A thwarted attempt to hurl a grenade at Ethiopia's reformist new prime...

The Skanner News

Norma Jean Augusta "Gussie" McRobert, died March 8, aged 79. McRobert served as Gresham's mayor from 1988 to 1998.

"She was a dynamic person, easy to communicate with because she was very clear in what she had to say," said Bobbie Foster, executive editor of The Skanner News. "She was a strong leader and a very compassionate person. She knew what she wanted to do and she set out to get it done."

Shane Bemis, the current mayor, said the City of Gresham will fly its flags at half-staff for 10 days, one for each year she served as mayor.

Born in Blanca, Colorado, McRobert grew up in Montana and southern Oregon. She moved to Gresham in 1955. After starting her career as a nurse, she earned bachelor's and master's degrees in communications. She worked in radio and television as a producer for Oregon Public Broadcasting, and then started her own PR firm, Rx Communications, before entering politics.

As Gresham's mayor she worked on the regional growth boundary, and left a legacy that includes 55 miles of off-road recreational trails and 700 acres of irreplaceable conservation areas, including buttes, wetlands and creek corridors. A champion of citizen involvement, McRobert gave neighborhood associations a voice in her administration.

She also wrote a book about her difficult childhood, "To Hell and Back: Survive and Thrive." In the book she relates her journey to success, despite having an alcoholic father and a mother who, "hated me with a passion."

She first married Dr. Marshall Brown, but the couple divorced after 10 years. Her second marriage, to Gresham businessman Chet McRobert, lasted for more than 40 years until his death in 2003.

Foster and McRobert became friends through their membership in the Portland chapter of Women in Communications Inc. They traveled together to Owerri, Nigeria, in July of 1991, as part of the delegation to recognize Owerri and Gresham as sister cities.

Under McRobert's leadership, Gresham was the first city in Oregon to develop a sister city relationship with an African city.

"She was a pioneer," said Bernie Foster, Publisher of The Skanner, who also traveled to Owerri with the Gresham delegation. "She was bold and she didn't take any nonsense."

While in Owerri, McRobert wanted to meet with local women and hear about their lives without official intermediaries. At a time when all the official leaders were men, this was a radical concept. Bobbie Foster said McRoberts got her way.

"She declared a women's meeting to hear their concerns and she made it known in no uncertain terms that all the men should leave the room," Bobbie Foster recalled. "A number of women expressed that they wished they had a way to obtain seed money to start small businesses. They said that would help them care better for their families."

McRobert is survived by five sons: Marc, Skip, Bradley, and Timothy McRobert, Gregory Brown; and three granddaughters, Kristina Smith, Kindel Brown and Heather Robertson.

A service will be held at 3 p.m. Wednesday March 14 at Gresham City Hall Council Chambers, 1333 N.W. Eastman Parkway.

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