Mayor Shane Bemis
Term of Office: January 2011 – December 2014
Read the Mayor's 2014 State of the City Address.
Shane T. Bemis was sworn into office as the City of Gresham’s 26th Mayor on January 2, 2007 and re-elected to a second term in November 2010. At the age of 34, Bemis became the youngest Mayor to serve the City of Gresham. Elected to the Gresham City Council in 2002, Bemis brought a passion for economic development, business, and community safety to City Hall.
Bemis was one of seven Mayors across the country highlighted in Esquire Magazine’s October 2013 “Age of the Mayor” article showcasing the City’s Garage to Storefront program, which ushered in 144 new small businesses in previously vacant storefronts in Gresham’s key commercial areas, and the City’s energy efficient and money-saving upgrade to LED streetlight bulbs.
A stalwart supporter of sustainable practices, Bemis currently serves as the Chair of the Energy Committee for the United States Conference of Mayors. He signed the US Conference of Mayors Climate Protection Agreement shortly after he took office and has spoken nationally about Gresham’s sustainability and energy efficiency initiatives, including being invited by the US Secretary of Energy to deliver the keynote address at the Department of Energy’s Clean Energy Summit.
Bemis has a diverse academic and professional background, with a Bachelor’s degree in communications from Marylhurst University and significant experience as a small business owner. He has been a restaurant owner in Gresham’s historic downtown for fifteen years and was honored by the Portland Business Journal as one of the region’s “Forty Under 40 Award” recipients in 2007.
Furthering his interest in successful economic development and job growth in Gresham and as a local restaurateur, Bemis is active in the Gresham Area Chamber of Commerce and the Historic Downtown Gresham Business Association.
Under his leadership the City Council adopted their first ever annual Council Work Plan in 2007, which put the operations of the City into a business-like planning document, charting out the goals and initiatives of the Council on a quarterly basis.
Bemis was the architect of the City’s push in 2007 to clean up the MAX line by assigning uniformed officers to patrol the trains, a program credited with increased safety on light rail in Gresham. Bemis’ advocacy also sparked the creation of a dedicated TriMet law enforcement precinct housed in the Gresham Police Department.
Bemis furthers his community interests through board service. During his time in office he has served on boards for the League of Oregon Cities, East Metro Economic Alliance, Greater Portland Inc. Metro Policy Advisory Committee (MPAC) (Chair), the Joint Policy Advisory Committee on Transportation (JPACT), and the Regional Organized Crime and Narcotics Task Force.
As Mayor, Bemis is also the Chairman of the City’s redevelopment commission, which guides the Rockwood urban renewal district.
In 2005 Bemis Chaired Gresham’s Centennial Celebration Committee, which planned and hosted events to celebrate Gresham’s 100th birthday. The same year he was honored as Gresham’s “Citizen of the Year” for his service to the community.
Mayor Bemis can be reached at 503-618-2584 or MayorBemis@GreshamOregon.gov.