Signature Gathering Efforts Begin In Bid To Establish "Tom McCall Day"

Nov 18, 2013

An effort to honor a former Oregon governor is shifting into second gear.  This week, organizers are beginning to collect signatures to get an initiative establishing Tom McCall Day on the November 2014 ballot.

Tom McCall was governor from 1967 to 1975 and during that time, chalked up an impressive record as a champion of the environment.  

McCall: "I simply say Oregon is demure and lovely, and it ought to play a little hard to get.  And I think you'll all be just as sick as I am if you find it is nothing but a hungry hussy throwing itself at every stinking smokestack that's offered."

That was Tom McCall in 1982, compiled in a short YouTube video by John Hughel, defending his controversial statement that people should visit Oregon, but not stay. 

Former Oregon Governor Tom McCall
Credit Oregon Historical Society

Bill Hall of Newport is with the Tom McCall Legacy Project.

Hall: “It was an amazing legacy in the McCall years.  Not only the beach bill and the bottle bill, but the bike bill – for the very first setting aside gas tax revenues for bike paths and trails.”

Oregon's groundbreaking bottle bill was one of Governor Tom McCall's signature achievements.
Credit Oregon Historical Society

Hall and other organizers want to establish an official day each year to honor the Republican governor – March 22, McCall’s birthday.  The Legacy Project has an uphill battle ahead of them.   They need to collect 87,000 valid signatures, and they're attempting to do it without paid signature gatherers.

For more information about the campaign to establish Tom McCall Day in Oregon, click here.