BEND, OR -- Just a week after Mayor Sally Russell announced her resignation from the Bend City Council, Councilor Rita Schenkelberg is also stepping down.
In a letter sent to Council Monday and obtained by KBND News, Schenkelberg cites the inability to meet expectations of a full-time job and Council duties. Schenkelberg’s resignation is effective as of Wednesday's Council meeting, as is Mayor Russell’s.
Here is Schenkelberg's full letter to Council:
Dear fellow city councilors and city staff,
I am writing to inform you of my resignation as of the May 18th, 2022, meeting. I am grateful for all the support I have received during my time in office. I have learned so much and was grateful to bring ideas forward which weren't previously discussed. Thank you to all the staff who took time to explain and navigate topics with me. Thank you to all the staff who invited me to see where they work and share about their positions and responsibilities.
Thank you to my fellow city councilors. I am grateful to you all. Thank you for teaching me about local government and the nuances of our position.
I am unable to meet the expectations of my full-time job and being a city councilor. The pressure to be the first queer, non-binary, poc was not sustainable for me. My hope is that the thoughts and ideas I have brought forward can help inform future decisions.
Thank you everyone again,
Rita Schenkelberg (They/Them)- City Councilor