Nov 25, 2019
When Eddy Morales first moved back to Gresham, Oregon from Washington, DC, he did not plan to run for elected office. He expected to continue his business as a political campaign adviser and reconnect with family and community. Years in DC working with Voto Latino and Democracy Alliance had sharpened his considerable talents as a national policy advocate, and he wanted to engage civically at the local level. But when he watched the 2016 election returns with his nieces and nephews, intending to celebrate the election of the nation’s first women president, his heart sank. The election of Donald trump and its implications for family members who were not citizens, motivated him to act. He advocated that the Gresham City Council assume Sanctuary City status and challenged the intrusion of ICE into community life. When responses ranged from indifference to hostility, he took stock of the political landscape and determined that transforming the status quo meant getting involved at more structural level. He formed East County Rising and a new era of political activism and community engagement was born.