Metro Council offices in NE Portland.
Metro Council offices in NE Portland.

Former state representative Mary Nolan is running for a seat on the Metro Council.

Nolan, who previously served six terms representing Northwest Portland in the Oregon State Legislature between 2001 and 2013, announced her plan to run for Metro Council on Friday. She is running to replace current Councilor Sam Chase, who is himself running to fill a seat on the Portland City Council left open by the late Commissioner Nick Fish. The seat represents Metro’s sixth district, which covers Northeast and Northwest Portland.

“Metro is the glue that holds the whole Portland metropolitan area together,” Nolan said in a press release announcing her candidacy. “I have a proven track record of major initiatives in protecting natural resources, expanding transit, and planning for livability for today’s families and seven generations to come, exactly what Metro is all about.”

During her twelve years in the legislature, Nolan rose through the ranks to become majority leader in the House. During that time, she advocated for funding for MAX line extensions and Tilikum Crossing. Nolan is also a co-founder NARAL Pro-Choice Oregon, and was the executive director of Planned Parenthood Advocates of Oregon from 2015 to 2017.

Nolan ran for Portland City Council in 2012, but lost to Commissioner Amanda Fritz.

It isn’t yet clear who Nolan will be running against in this election, which will take place on May 19. Several local figures have expressed an interest in running, including Q Center Executive Director (and former mayoral candidate) Cameron Whitten and Chris Smith, who is vice chair of Portland’s Planning and Sustainability Commission and is involved in the No More Freeways campaign. But so far only Nolan and local patent lawyer Karen Spencer have filed to run.