Don Younger (January) ?
The grizzled owner of SE ?Belmont Street’s Horse Brass Pub helped stoke Portland’s ?now-prodigious appetite ?for good beer.

Image: Chris Cech

THIS YEAR drew the final curtain on some Oregon legends. In particular, the August death of Senator Mark Hatfield recalled the nearly extinct breed of liberal Republican lions that defined our politics for decades. As governor and senator, Hatfield opposed the Vietnam War, battled Nixon, and brought home pork by the ton. The state’s current politicos rallied to the Baptist pacifist’s memorial—and seldom looked punier by comparison. Likewise, the losses of Harold Schnitzer (April), a self-made real-estate baron and philanthropic titan, and Betty Roberts (June), the first woman on the Oregon Supreme Court, marked the passing of pioneering eras. On a darker note, Elizabeth Dunham, the sex-abuse victim of former mayor and governor Neil Goldschmidt, died in January, unleashing more sordid details of the long-hidden scandal but also closing an anguished chapter of Portland’s secret history.

Meanwhile, others who changed Portland in lesser-known but powerfully soulful ways also made their exits this year. A parting toast for:

 

Don Younger (January) ?
The grizzled owner of SE ?Belmont Street’s Horse Brass Pub helped stoke Portland’s ?now-prodigious appetite ?for good beer.

Image: Chris Cech

 

Joan Shipley (September)
From the Museum of Contemporary Craft to the Portland Institute for Contemporary Art, the culture-scene benefactress seeded the art scene with money, sweat equity, and spirit.

 

Mary Healy Clark (June)
The philanthropist and arts advocate served on the ?Portland Art Museum’s board for 16 years.

Image: Chris Cech

 

John Helmer (September)
Famed for his New Yorker beret ads, this old-school haberdasher defined dapper well before the current ?crop of retro-suspender-wearing dudes.

Image: Chris Cech

 

William “Robbie” Robinson
(May) One of Portland’s ?greenest-ever thumbs, the Parks Bureau garden chief helped establish the Japanese Garden.

Image: Chris Cech

 

Steve Apotheker (June)
The pioneering recycling expert and “soft bulldog” advocate pushed Portland to curb its landfill habit.

 

John Zupan (August)
The “grocery store maverick” founded local mini-chain Zupan’s—and helped pave the way for shelves stocked with high-quality, organic foods.

 

Greg Baldwin (June)
An architect and urban designer quietly helped reshape Portland, from Gov. Tom McCall Waterfront Park and the River District to the MAX lines and Director Park.

 

E. Kimbark MacColl (August)
The historian’s wry, doorstop-size treatises on Portland’s past remain mandatory reading for understanding the mossy pilings beneath the city we now know.

 

Steve Jobs (October) ?He wasn’t from Portland, but his days as a wandering Reed dropout helped forge the Apple chief’s sensibilities.

Image: Chris Cech

This article appeared in the December 2011 issue of Portland Monthly Magazine.

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