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Oregon Treasurer Candidates Talk Up Their Job Qualifications During Debate

Candidates for Oregon treasurer, Republican Jeff Gudman, left, Democrat Tobias Read and the Independent Party's Chris Telfer, faced off Monday on OPB's ''Think Out Loud.''
Allison Frost
/
OPB
Candidates for Oregon treasurer, Republican Jeff Gudman, left, Democrat Tobias Read and the Independent Party's Chris Telfer, faced off Monday on OPB's ''Think Out Loud.''

The three major-party contenders for Oregon treasurer faced off Monday in a debate that often focused on the candidates' qualifications for the job. Republican Jeff Gudman, Democrat Tobias Read and the Independent Party's Chris Telfer were part of the conversation during a broadcast of OPB's "Think Out Loud."

The Oregon Treasurer helps manage the state's borrowing and investments.

Gudman said his professional experience most closely lines up with the job. He works as a treasurer for the Legacy Emanuel Foundation and has served in that capacity for other organizations.

"It's been my line -- campaign line, and tag line -- all along: ‘a treasurer for Treasurer,’” Gudman said. “I bring decades of experience in the financial field."

Read has served five terms in the Oregon House. He said his experience as a state lawmaker gives him an advantage in the race.

"If the question is whether I can handle numbers, the answer is clearly yes,” Read said. “I've been on the Revenue Committee nearly my entire time in the legislature. I've been on the budget committee -- the Ways & Means Committee -- for quite a while as well."

Telfer is a former Republican state lawmaker. She's also worked as a Certified Public Accountant with a practice in Bend. She said that professional background makes her well-suited to the job of state treasurer.

"We need a problem-solver in there,” Teller said. “People who can identify the problems and come up with the solutions to address those problems."

The winner of the November election will replace Ted Wheeler. The Democrat has served in the job for six years but is leaving to become mayor of Portland.

Copyright 2016 Northwest News Network

Chris Lehman covers the Oregon state capitol for JPR as part of the Northwest News Network, a group of 12 Northwest public radio organizations which collaborate on regional news coverage. Chris graduated from Temple University with a journalism degree in 1997. He began his career producing arts features for Red River Public Radio in Shreveport, Louisiana and has been a reporter/announcer for NPR station WNIJ in DeKalb, Illinois. Chris has also reported from overseas, filing stories from Iraq, Burkina Faso, El Salvador, Northern Ireland, Zimbabwe and Uganda.
Chris Lehman
Chris Lehman graduated from Temple University with a journalism degree in 1997. He landed his first job less than a month later, producing arts stories for Red River Public Radio in Shreveport, Louisiana. Three years later he headed north to DeKalb, Illinois, where he worked as a reporter and announcer for NPR–affiliate WNIJ–FM. In 2006 he headed west to become the Salem Correspondent for the Northwest News Network.