The county Board of Commissioners selected Commissioner Kathleen Sullivan on Wednesday as the board’s new chairwoman.

Sullivan, who served as vice chair last year, was elected in 2016 and represents eastern Astoria to Westport. She replaces Commissioner Sarah Nebeker.

She is up for reelection this year, and although she has not publicly announced whether she will campaign for another four-year term, she is expected to run. Courtney Bangs, a Knappa teacher, will run for Sullivan’s post in the May election.

“It is an honor to be selected as board chair of the Clatsop County commissioners,” Sullivan said in an email. “I appreciate the wide range of talents and experiences of my fellow commissioners and our staff and know that together, we will continue to provide excellent leadership for Clatsop County.”

Sullivan, Commissioner Mark Kujala and Commissioner Lianne Thompson nominated themselves Wednesday to be the board’s next leader. They all voted for themselves. Nebeker and Commissioner Pamela Wev voted for Sullivan.

Following the selection of Sullivan, Nebeker, Kujala and Thompson nominated themselves for vice chair. Wev and Sullivan voted for Nebeker, making her the board’s new vice chair.

Nebeker is also up for reelection this year. Her district covers Gearhart and Clatsop Plains and portions of Seaside and Warrenton.

“As chair, my goal is to further teamwork among the board members and staff, to maintain accountability to the public by being open and transparent in our work as a board, to basically tell our story so that folks know what their county government does every day, and very well,” Sullivan said.

She hopes to increase public involvement in all levels of local government.

“The county government not only provides necessary services to the residents and visitors of Clatsop County, it is one of the largest employers in the area,” Sullivan said. “It is important that we all work together to be the best we can be.”

Nicole Bales is a reporter for The Astorian, covering police, courts and county government. Contact her at 971-704-1724 or

Recommended for you

(0) comments

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.