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Home > State > Executive > Office of the Secretary of State > Agency Subdivisions

Office of the Secretary of State: Agency Subdivisions

The State Capitol in Salem houses the central offices of the Secretary of State. (Oregon State Archives Photo)

The State Capitol in Salem houses the central offices of the Secretary of State. (Oregon State Archives Photo)

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Archives Division
Address: 800 Summer St. NE, Salem 97310
Phone: 503-373-0701
Fax: 503-378-4118
Contact: Mary Beth Herkert, State Archivist
Statutory Authority: ORS 177.120, Chapter 183, 192.001–192.170, 357.805–357.885

Duties and Responsibilities: The Archives Division, which began operations in 1947, manages, preserves and provides access to the records of all levels of Oregon government. The division houses Oregon’s permanently valuable government records and provides access to these records at the State Archives and on the Web, provides records management advice and assistance to government agencies, and operates the State Records Center and Security Copy Depository. The division is also responsible for filing, codifying and publishing the Oregon Administrative Rules (OARs) and publishes the Oregon Blue Book. The state archivist also serves as the coordinator of the State Historical Records Advisory Board.

The oldest records housed at the State Archives include records of the provisional and territorial governments and the Oregon Constitution.


State Historical Records Advisory Board
Address: 800 Summer St. NE, Salem 97310
Phone: 503-373-5196
Fax: 503-378-4118
Contact: Mary Beth Herkert, State Coordinator


Audits Division
Address: Public Service Bldg., 255 Capitol St. NE, Suite 500, Salem 97310
Phone: 503-986-2255; Hotline: 1-800-336-8218
Fax: 503-378-6767
Contact: Mary Wenger, Interim Director
Statutory Authority: ORS 177.170–177.180, Chapter 297

Duties and Responsibilities: Created in 1929, the Audits Division conducts audits to protect the public interest and improve Oregon government. The division ensures that public funds are properly accounted for, spent in accordance with legal requirements and used to the best advantage. These efforts evoke Oregon’s first auditor whose duties were defined in the Territorial Statutes “to lessen the public expenses, use public money to best advantage, promote frugality in public office, and generally, for better management.” The division conducts its work according to the professional standards published by the U.S. Government Accountability Office, and all its audits are available to the public on the Secretary of State’s Web site.

Corporation Division
Address: Public Service Bldg., 255 Capitol St. NE, Suite 151, Salem 97310
Phone: 503-986-2200
Fax: 503-986-6355
Contact: Peter Threlkel, Director
Statutory Authority: ORS Chapters 56, 58, 60, 62, 63, 65, 67, 68, 79, 80, 87, 128, 194, 554, 647, 648

Duties and Responsibilities: The origins and functions of the Corporation Division date back to 1862. The division provides timely document processing services and convenient access to information about businesses, notaries, secured transactions, and government resources for a prosperous Oregon. The division assists the public in registering business entities and filing public notice of records of debt, commissions notaries public, and provides certification of records and notarized documents. The division provides access to public record information in the form of copies, certificates, lien searches, computer reports, and on-line database access to allow the public and businesses to know with whom they are doing business.

The Office of Small Business Assistance assists businesses who experience difficulty in their interactions with a state agency and connects busi­nesses with state and non-state resources. The office acts as an ombudsman to help resolve problems between businesses and state agencies.

The division helps entrepreneurs start a business in Oregon by ensuring government registration processes are as fast and easy as possible. These efforts help accomplish the secretary of state’s vision to deliver better results to Oregonians through more efficient and effective service delivery, greater transparency and accountability, and using innovation to connect Oregonians to their government.

Elections Division
Address: Public Service Bldg., 255 Capitol St. NE, Suite 501, Salem 97310
Phone: 503-986-1518
Fax: 503-373-7414
Contact: Brenda Bayes, Interim Director
Statutory Authority: ORS Chapters 246260

Duties and Responsibilities: The Elections Division ensures the uniform interpretation and application of Oregon’s election laws and enforces federal election laws. It monitors and supervises election administration of the country’s first vote-by-mail system in all 36 counties and provides the public, elected officials, candidates, media and interested parties advice and assistance in all matters related to elections. Though some of its duties were performed prior to statehood in 1859, the Elections Division was officially created in 1957 when the secretary of state was named the chief elections officer for the state.

The division manages the statewide voter registration database and the electronic system for tracking and reporting campaign finance transactions. The division accepts filings for state offices, receives and verifies initiative and referendum petitions, and monitors campaign contributions and expenditure reports. The division publishes and distributes the Voters’ Pamphlet for all state elections and investigates alleged election law violations.

Internal Support


Business Services Division
Address: Public Service Bldg., 255 Capitol St. NE, Suite 180, Salem 97310
Phone: 503-986-2204
Fax: 503-378-4991
Contact: Jeff Morgan, Director


Human Resources Division
Address: Public Service Bldg., 255 Capitol St. NE, Suite 105, Salem 97310
Phone: 503-986-2168
Fax: 503-986-2175
Contact: Jackie Steffens, Director

Information Systems Division
Address: Public Service Bldg., 255 Capitol St. NE, Suite 103, Salem 97310
Phone: 503-986-1519
Contact: Chris Molin, Director


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