CURL

While many activists shoot their proverbial wad after one monumental act, Portland remains home to a handful of lifetime activists who have dedicated their lives to beating the drum of political idealism. Hank Curl is one of the quiet ones, becoming animated only when sharing his passion for American communist philosophy. A Portland resident for most of his life, Curl and his late wife, painter Martina Gangl-Curl, were active together in Communist party meetings and peace marches in the mid-'30s. They ran the John Reed Bookstore downtown, where their collection of books on labor issues and workers rights paid homage to the store's namesake, Portland-born communist and journalist John Reed. Curl's idealism hasn't wavered in almost 70 years of work as a labor activist, and he still treks daily to the docks to hand out the bilingual People's Weekly World and talk to workers about the importance of organizing. Hats off to Hank, for a lifetime of fighting the good fight!