KATE BROWN is Oregon’s 24th Secretary of State.
First elected in 2008, Secretary Brown has shown an unrivaled desire to improve the lives of every Oregonian. Progressive, passionate and persistent, Kate has dedicated her life to public service.
As Secretary of State, Kate has fought to increase accountability and transparency in state government. Under her leadership, Secretary Brown has made Oregon friendlier to businesses by creating Business Express, a streamlined website, and forming the Office of Small Business Assistance. Additionally, Kate has led efforts to modernize our voting process, developing an online voter registration system and using technology to increase access for soldiers abroad and those with disabilities. She ensures that taxpayer dollars are spent effectively and efficiently by auditing state agencies so that they can operate at peak performance.
As a state legislator for 17 years, Kate championed Oregon values by advocating for a searchable online database for campaign contributions to enable Oregonians to follow the money in politics. She was also instrumental in passing comprehensive ethics reforms, a rewrite of the Juvenile Code, mental health parity and comprehensive civil rights laws.
Kate practiced family and juvenile law, and she has taught at Portland State University. She earned her law degree from Lewis & Clark Law School after receiving a Bachelor of Arts degree in environmental conservation, with a certificate in women’s studies from the University of Colorado at Boulder. Kate grew up in Minnesota.
Kate lives in Portland with her husband Dan.
Secretary of State Kate Brown
136 State Capitol Building., 900 Court St. NE, Salem 97310-0722; 503-986-1523
Kate Brown, Portland; Democrat; elected 2008; reelected 2012; term expires January 2017.
The secretary of state is one of three constitutional officers of the executive branch elected statewide. The secretary serves a four-year term and can hold office for a second consecutive term.
The responsibilities of the secretary of state include leadership roles in the following areas.
Chief elections officer: The secretary interprets and applies state election laws, compiles and publishes the Voters’ Pamphlet and supervises all elections, local and statewide.
Auditor of public accounts: She examines and audits accounts of all publicly funded boards, commissions and agencies.
Corporation Division: The secretary keeps public records of businesses authorized to transact business in Oregon, nonprofit corporations, and trade and service marks. Other public business records include notices of security interests in movable and personal property, statutory liens, and warrants.
Chief records officer of the state: The secretary houses and provides access to the permanently valuable records of state government through the Archives Division and provides storage for inactive state agency records through the State Records Center.
State Land Board member: The secretary shares responsibility with the governor and treasurer for supervising and managing state-owned lands.
Oregon Sustainability Board: The secretary serves as chair.
The secretary is custodian of the Seal of the State of Oregon, and she regulates Oregon notaries
public. She also publishes the Oregon Blue Book.
If the office of governor becomes vacant, the office passes to the secretary of state. There is no lieutenant governor in Oregon.