Oregon has a new outdoor recreation czar

outdoor recreationOregon is a state known for outdoor recreation, but recent trends show that the percentage of Oregonians who take part in outdoor recreation has declined in some areas, particularly outside of Bend and the Portland Metro counties. For example, data indicates many places on Oregon’s South Coast and Klamath-Siskiyou region see fewer outdoor adventurers.

That’s why last summer the Office of Outdoor Recreation was created. And now it has a director.

Cailin O’Brien-Feeney has been hired to lead the office, essentially becoming Oregon’s outdoors czar. He will be responsible for managing a small team tasked with “elevating outdoor recreation in every corner of the state.”

Oregon is the fourth state to set up an office devoted to this goal, following Utah, Washington and Colorado. However, creation of the office in Oregon was not without controversy.

The group that supported efforts to create the office included Keen Footwear, REI and other retailers that promote recreation such has hiking, biking, and kayaking.

Some are asking whether Oregon’s new Office of Outdoor Recreation will promote other activities, such as hunting, fishing and motorized recreation.

“Despite the fact that hunting is a longstanding and strong economic driver, Oregon’s government continues to ignore it,” Dominic Aiello, president of the Oregon Outdoor Council, told The (Salem) Statesman Journal.

You can learn about the many ways to enjoy Oregon’s great outdoors at Oregon Forests Forever.