Since joining the Metro Council in 2006, Kathryn Harrington has worked to support livability, economic prosperity and improving transportation in Washington County and throughout greater Portland. Harrington has been a steadfast voice for public participation and accountability at the regional table.
In her three terms on the Metro Council, Harrington has led efforts to reform Oregon’s land use system in a way that preserves farms and forests while setting aside an appropriate amount of land for economic growth.
She’s led efforts to add important areas like Chehalem Ridge to Metro’s voter-approved natural areas network, and supported efforts to plan for public use of those sites.
Kathryn has been a champion for pedestrian safety, working to create regional standards and set aside federal money for safe streets. Her work was recognized by Oregon Walks, and she was honored in 2013 with the Weston Award for her efforts to increase walkability and make our streets and cities more accessible and more livable. She’s worked to ensure Washington County residents get a fair share of regional spending on congestion relief projects, as well.
In addition to working on livability, economic prosperity and improving transportation, Kathryn is also focused on improving access to government for people of color, improving safety and quality of life for elders, and ensuring Oregon has modern pipes, roads, parks and schools that will be able to withstand the next large Cascadia earthquake.
Before entering public service, Kathryn built a 22-year career in the tech industry. In Oregon, she led teams and developed and sold new products, first at Central Point Software and then at Intel in Hillsboro, where she worked for 10 years.
In early 2004, Kathryn left the tech industry to give back to her community full time, working as a community advocate. Her community work included serving as vice chair of Citizen Participation Organization 7, acting as a citizen representative on the Metro Regional Travel Options Subcommittee, and working with other organizations including transportation planning committees and Washington County's road project advisory committees. Kathryn is passionate about improving our community, and has pushed for more effective land use and citizen input on county issues.
Kathryn’s father was an Air Force colonel, and she grew up around many American air bases before settling in Washington County in 1990 with her husband Marc. She graduated from the University of New Hampshire with a degree in electrical engineering.
Kathryn’s unique background has given her the experience and expertise to effectively represent the District 4 area of Washington County at Metro. She has a history of collaborative leadership and of bringing all parties together to get the job done.