Run for City office

Information
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On this page, you will find resources, instructions, and information on the City's elected offices and how to run for office.
On this page

Elected City Offices

The City currently has six nonpartisan elected offices:

OfficeIncumbentTerm Expires
MayorMayor Ted WheelerDecember 2024
Commissioner Position No. 1Commissioner Carmen RubioDecember 2024
Commissioner Position No. 2Commissioner Dan RyanDecember 2024
Commissioner Position No. 3Commissioner Rene GonzalezDecember 2024
Commissioner Position No. 4Commissioner Mingus MappsDecember 2024
City AuditorAuditor Simone RedeDecember 2024

Next City Election and Candidate Filing Dates

General Election: November 5, 2024

Candidate Filing Window: June 5, 2024 through August 27, 2024

Offices on the Ballot: 

  • City Mayor
  • City Auditor
  • All City Council Seats

Terms, Voting, and Election Timing

All City elected officials serve 4-year terms. The Mayor and Auditor are elected at-large through single-winner ranked-choice voting. The 12 City Councilors are elected in 4 City districts through multi-winner ranked-choice voting. 

  • The Mayor and Councilors from Districts No. 1 and 2 are elected during presidential elections (2024, 2028, etc.).
  • The Auditor and Councilors from Districts No. 3 and 4 are elected during midterm elections (2026, 2030, etc.) after the initial election for all seats in 2024.

Prohibitions for Elected City Officials

Elected City officials are subject to prohibitions on outside offices and profit-making positions. For more information about these prohibitions, please see the City Attorney Office's Informational Memo. 


City Districts

On August 21, 2023, the Independent District Commission adopted a final plan establishing 4 districts within the City of Portland for the very first time. Each district will be represented by 3 City Councilors chosen by each district's registered voters at the November 2024 General Election. 

See the Districts:  District Boundaries Map (Visual Map Outlining Districts)

Find Your City District: Portland Interactive Map  (Address Search Tool)


City of Portland Candidate Guide for the November 2024 Municipal General Election


How to File to Run for Office

1. Review Qualifications to Run for Office

To run for office, you must be all of the following:

  1. U.S. citizen
  2. Oregon resident
  3. Resident of Portland (or reside in an area that has been incorporated by the City) for at least 1 year prior to the General Election. Candidates for a Councilor position must also reside in the district they will represent.
  4. Registered voter
  5. For Auditor candidates only, you must also be one of the following: 
    • Certified Public Accountant
    • Certified Internal Auditor
    • Certified Management Accountant

For important and detailed information on the steps and requirements to run as a candidate for City office, please be sure to read the City of Portland Candidate Guide for the November 2024 Municipal General Election.

2. Review Campaign Finance Requirements

3. Gather Materials Needed for Filing

For the Candidate Filing Application, you will need to provide specific information, including the following:

  • Occupational Background
  • Educational Background
  • Prior Government Experience
  • Online Payment Method for those filing by Declaration of Candidacy (credit/debit cards and electronic checks are accepted online)

4. Choose Your Filing Option

Candidates have two available options to file for candidacy. As of December 10, 2021, candidates filing under either option are eligible to apply to participate in the Small Donor Elections Program (formerly Open and Accountable Elections Program or OAE). The filing options are:

  1. Filing by Declaration of Candidacy (filing by fee or fee waiver) requires submitting a Candidate Filing Application along with either the required filing fee or a Fee Waiver form.
  2. Filing by Nominating Petition (filing by obtaining voter signatures) requires submitting a Candidate Filing Application, submitting a Signature Sheet for approval, collecting 500 valid signatures of registered voters from the applicable electoral district, and submitting the collected signatures to the City Elections Office for verification along with a Petition Submission Form. * [Candidates can begin collecting signatures for the 2024 General Election starting June 5th.]

→ Option One: Declaration of Candidacy (Fee or Fee Waiver)

Select one:

Filing fee:

  • Mayor: $100
  • Auditor: $100
  • City Councilor: $75

Payment options

  • Pay the Filing Fee Online [Updated payment site coming soon]
    • (link also included in the Online Candidate Filing Application)
  • Make an appointment to pay the fee In person
  • Make out a check to "City of Portland" and mail to:
    City Elections Office
    1221 SW 4th Avenue, Room 130 
    Portland, OR 97204

→ Option Two: Nominating Petition (No Fee)

Select one:

► Important Information About the Signature Sheet Form (SEL 121 Form):

  1. Candidates can begin collecting signatures for the 2024 General Election starting June 5th
  2. Leave the "Petition ID" space blank. The City Elections Office will provide a Petition ID for you.
  3. DO NOT circulate sheets for signature until your submitted Signature Sheet for Nominating Petition Form (SEL 121 Form) has been approved in writing by the City Elections Office.  
  4. If you are submitting your Candidate Filing Application through the online portal, the portal provides a place where you can upload the signature sheet form for approval.
  5. If you are submitting your Candidate Filing Application using a paper application, be sure to attach your signature sheet form for approval.
  6. Once you have collected sufficient signatures on your pre-approved signature sheet form, you must submit the completed signature sheets with original signatures in person for verification. Signature sheets must also be submitted with a Petition Submission Form (SEL 338 Form). Please be sure to notify the City Elections Officeof when you plan to submit your signature sheets.
  7. For more information on qualifying signature sheets and deadlines, see the City of Portland Candidate Guide for the November 2024 Municipal General Election. 

5. Check to See If You Need Any Additional Forms

Check the City of Portland Candidate Guide for the November 2024 Municipal General Election to see which additional forms you may need. Some commonly used forms:

6. Submit Candidate Filing Forms by Deadline

Candidate filing window opens: June 5, 2024
Candidate filing window closes: August 27, 2024

Ways to Submit Filing Forms:

Candidate Learning Sessions

Starting in January of 2024, the City Elections Office will offer learning sessions for anyone interested in running for office. The learning sessions cover many of the things new or veteran candidates need to know, including:

  • Campaign Finance 
  • Public Funding of Campaigns
  • Filing for the Ballot
  • Voter's Pamphlets
  • Resources for Candidates
  • and a lot more!

Learning sessions include guest speakers from Multnomah County, the Secretary of State's Office, Small Donor Elections, and the City's Transition Team, and have plenty of time for questions from participants.

Two introductory sessions were held in early January. Watch a recording of the virtual session

Reach out to us with any questions about these learning sessions by email at elections@portlandoregon.gov.


Candidate Filing Applications

PDF 2022 Candidate Filing Application (AUD 120 Form) [updated form coming soon]

Online Candidate Filing Application [updated application coming soon]


Write-in Candidates

Voters have the option to write in the name of a candidate instead of voting for a candidate whose name is printed on the ballot. For write-in candidates, the following applies:

  • Write-in candidates must be certified to be elected. Certification forms must be submitted at least 7 days in advance of the election date. [certification form coming soon]
  • Write-in candidates are still subject to the City's campaign finance regulations.
  • Write-in candidates may be required to establish a Principal Campaign Committee with the Oregon Secretary of State.

Contact

City Elections

City Elections Office

Louise Hansen

City Elections Officer

Location