Jack Pollock


It seems as if another skeleton has been shaken from Oregon's closet: Last week it was reported that Matt Hennessee allegedly sexually abused an underage female relative more than a decade ago.

Hennessee, the former Portland Development Commission chairman, is routinely considered as a potential candidate for various high-level political positions. including a US Congress seat.

Hennessee has traveled through the highest political and corporate circles in Oregon, from working as a Nike executive to helping with Governor Ted Kulongoski's transition team last year. In 2002, he was handpicked by then-Mayor Vera Katz to serve on the PDC board.

The accusations, published last week by the Oregonian, stem from alleged incidents in the early '90s, when the girl was 12 to 16 years old. Now 29 years old, she broke her silence, providing emails from Hennessee in which he apologizes for the sexual abuse.

Last summer, Hennessee was accused of handing out PDC public dollar contracts to buddies. After a cursory investigation, those charges were dismissed. PB


If you're waiting anxiously for an outcome in the investigation over alleged racism at the Oregon Liquor Control Commission (OLCC), don't hold your breath. The state's Department of Justice (DOJ) is now running the investigation—and they don't seem to be in any hurry to get the job done either.

Some background: Nearly three months ago, the owner of the now-defunct Vue nightclub, Rami Makboul, attributed this past summer's spate of downtown violence to African Americans. Makboul also said that an OLCC agent several years earlier had made similar comments. In response, City Commissioner Sam Adams asked OLCC Executive Director Teresa Kaiser to investigate the allegations.

But when contacted last week by the Mercury for an update on the case, Kaiser didn't immediately know what had happened to the investigation. After some checking, she discovered that (surprise!) the investigation is "ongoing"—specifically, the DOJ is conducting interviews, although more specific information was unavailable. SM