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Meet Director Adena Long

Photograph of Adena Long walking through offices at The Portland Building

Meet Director Adena Long

Adena Long was appointed Director of Portland Parks & Recreation in February 2019. She brings to this role over 25 years of experience in the parks and recreation industry and in management. A native of New York, Director Long started her career at the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation as a seasonal Urban Park Ranger in 1997. In this role she contributed to informing and educating park visitors on some of the most well-known well visited city parks in the country - and it sparked a full-time career in parks and recreation. 

"Starting out as a Park Ranger was really good grounding for my career in parks and provided me with the insight and empathy to effectively make decisions that affect our frontline field staff," she says. 

Director Long steadily moved up the ranks, and in 2010 became the first woman of color and youngest-ever, to serve as Parks Borough Commissioner. During her tenure at the department, Director Long also served in the citywide capacity of Assistant Commissioner and Deputy Commissioner. 

"It was indeed an honor and a privilege to serve in those roles, and I carry a lot of what I learned with me to my position as Director of Portland Parks & Recreation," she says. 

Portrait photograph of Adena Long standing inside near a window and wearing a grey suit.

Director Long has spent much of her professional career involved in designing and creating parks and recreational facilities. She has also worked on preserving and restoring natural areas and urban forests and has a particular passion for providing low-barrier access to opportunities and experiences for all. As Director, she devotes a lot of her time in building and nurturing partnerships by connecting people with parks.  

Director Long firmly believes that parks are a great equalizer and that all communities need great parks.  

“I am and will remain committed to building an equitable parks system, one that serves all Portlanders, from all walks of life,” adds Director Long. 

She is an active outdoor enthusiast and can often be found exploring the spectacular mountains and waterways of the Pacific Northwest. For fun, she also enjoys doing yard work, watching true crime TV, listening to 90's hip-hop, and playing darts. Adena lives in Portland with her husband and their German Shepherd and hiking partner, Selina.