I’m Albert Kaufman, an activist, networker, musician, writer, Green Democrat, and resident of Portland, Oregon. 

Over the past 20 years, I’ve worked on a variety of issues – all with the aim to make our lives better. I’m a big fan of living a good life. Since 2008 I’ve published a monthly newsletter called The Eleven which is partly an encouragement to friends and family to take political action, but I also support people in taking good care of their health.

Here are some of the issues I’ve concentrated on and my background:

BA in Political Science from NYU: 1984
MA in Political Science from Rutgers University: 1992

  • Trees. I am passionate about trees. They clean the air and are beautiful to behold. Before I moved to Portland I worked on tree-planting projects in Seattle, Washington which brought my community together in a meaningful way. One of the joys of my life in Portland has been the many tree plantings I have organized with the help of Friends of Trees in the Beaumont-Wilshire, Kerns, Irvington, and other neighborhoods. Over the last 5 years, I have spearheaded a Facebook (FB) group called We Keep Trees Standing which aims to both protect the trees that are already alive and plant as many new ones as possible. We’ve managed to make it harder to remove trees by lobbying the City of Portland to improve the Tree Code and any other way we can. I invite you to come and join our group and help keep our canopy alive and thriving!
  • Air Quality & Noise Pollution. For the past 6 years, I’ve been working with Quiet Clean PDX to ban gas-powered leaf blowers in our region. We’ve had some success – both the City of Portland and Multnomah County are transitioning away from using these tools. Also, through the use of online tools such as Nextdoor, we’ve had an impact on the ground. To learn more about this effort and join us, please visit quietcleanpdx.org – currently, we’re introducing legislation at the state level for the 3rd time.
  • The Arts. I am a musician. I play the guitar and sing. I’m the guy you want at your gathering who will sing songs everyone knows until the dawn is breaking! I’m also a huge fan of live music and have been attending and supporting the local live music and festival scene for many years. I’m an attendee, but in my role as a digital marketer, I also help organize some of the online festival groups with clear communication and engaging content.
  • Politics. I’ve worked on more political candidate campaigns and initiative campaigns than I can count. Some of my favorites were: Legalizing Cannabis; helping elect President Obama twice; Measure 97 (increasing taxes for the wealthiest corporations which failed, but it continues to inspire similar efforts) and so many more. I also have been hosting voting parties in Portland for 15 years – recent ones are on Zoom and draw a large audience. These meetings are a great way for people to learn about the candidates and initiatives on the ballot.
  • Work. For the past 15 years, I have been teaching small businesses and nonprofits how to implement their digital marketing. I’ve taught classes and webinars on the topic and also mentor people on how to use email newsletters to get the word out about their project/business/cause. I’ve been a partner with Constant Contact which has helped me help hundreds of local businesses over the years. One example of how I’ve used these tools in the past to effect change is the work I mentioned above banning gas-powered leaf blowers.
  • Neighborhoods. I live in the Richmond neighborhood. Ever since moving to the Pacific Northwest in 1995, I’ve been interested in neighborhood associations. I’ve been president of one and an officer in others. Currently, I’m a Southeast Uplift board member. I find that being part of your neighborhood organization leads to learning what issues are most important and figuring out ways to do something about them together. It’s also a place to learn and practice public speaking – an art I’ve been perfecting for many years. Go, Toastmasters! If I had one thing I would encourage all schools to teach it would be public speaking – it’s good for building confidence and leadership skills.
  • In my free time. I like to build community. That means inviting people over to celebrate Jewish holidays like Shabbat and song circles. For exercise, I like to bike, walk, stretch, and do ecstatic dance. I’m also a huge fan of our local parks and you’ll sometimes find me dancing outside to a silent disco or on Mt. Tabor as part of the Mt. Tabor Dance Collective. I also am serious about mental health and am a 30-year active member of the Re-evaluation Counseling community. This is probably another topic I’d love to see schools teach – the ability to listen well to one another is underrated and is a skill that one can learn and continuously improve. I’ll be taking these skills into public office if I am elected.
  • Connection. Recently I attended a meeting for Neighbors for Clean Air. The leader mentioned that she thinks I am one of the most connected people in Portland that she knows. This is an interesting accomplishment and can be very useful when I’m trying to figure out either who to talk to or who needs to meet who 🙂 I’ve been a networker all my life and imagine I always will be.
  • Public Health and Safety. During the pandemic, I have been a leader in the communities I am connected to – providing a clear and passionate voice for people to get vaccinated and follow science vs. conspiracy theories. This has been a challenging time for all of us and I think it’s important that leaders are vocal about what makes sense healthwise.

More of my work in the community:

  • coordinated the publicity for many events such as The City Repair Project’s Village Building Convergence.
  • started Farm My Yard – A way for people who have yards with those that would be interested in farming them.
  • started and led a community garden called The Birthday Garden
  • blogged for BlueOregon, an Oregon left-wing blog
  • I’ve participated in issues such as the Colwood Golf course rezoning issue, Lone Fir cemetery addition, and on recycling and local food issues
  • I am also a frequent contributor to local and regional newspapers and blogs
  • On-going: I’ve become a huge fan of Nextdoor.com and have written 3 articles about my thinking about it. I think it’s the best tool for neighborhood organizing that’s ever existed.

For 6 years I lived abroad (in Germany, Brazil, Israel, and Costa Rica) which has shaped my understanding of the world and provided me with a unique perspective on how we might improve our living spaces.  I am also committed to thinking and writing about population growth as I believe it is at the core of our challenges with climate change, pollution, species loss, traffic congestion, suburban sprawl, and decreasing resources such as water. Here’s a short video on the subject which I find a useful primer.

Currently, I’m running my ideation company and combining forces with others to work on some of the ideas I am interested in spreading and to provide sustainable solutions to the challenges that face our world.  Whether it’s through depaving or encouraging the sharing of extra fruit with the Portland Fruit Tree Project, I’m interested in ideas that are collaborative. I also hope that we’ll continue to get better at reducing, reusing, and recycling and eventually no longer rely on sources of energy beyond our local area.

Please consider endorsing my candidacy for Multnomah County Commissioner District 3 – Thank you!

Yes on Portland Charter Change!
I supported this and I’m glad it passed!

Feel free to contact me @ albert@albertkaufman

Private garden/forest in SE Portland