Meet the Board: Jay Osborne

Long-time OPRI Board chair, Jay Osborne, got his start in advocacy while working at the North Clackamas School District. But what started out as a stopgap job became a career and led to a lifetime of representing the interests of state employees, and now retirees.

After spending 20 years as a home furnishings coordinator, Jay decided to make a career change. When a friend suggested he apply for a job at the School District, he did. This was the catalyst to his involvement in advocacy.

During his 27 years as a Custodial Supervisor and Head Custodian, Jay was actively involved in the Oregon School Employees Association (OSEA). After his first year on the job, he got involved in the union, and was elected to serve as chapter president for 15 years. During that time, he was also elected as Zone II Director on the OSEA Board of Directors, where he chaired several different union committees.

Jay with Representative Rachel Prusak (D – Tualatin/West Linn)

Jay continues to serve as an advocate, now for retirees through his service on the OPRI Board. He joined the Board in 2010 after being recommended to then OPRI chair Kathleen Beaufait. Participating on the OPRI Board, he says, seemed like a natural extension of his years of volunteering at OSEA.

“I believe in OPRI’s mission,” he says. “OPRI’s main strength is that we are the only organization whose primary focus is representing PERS retirees on individual concerns and on issues which affect PERS retirees as a whole.”

Since his retirement in 2009, Jay has been enjoying an active life. He still serves as an OSEA Government Relations Activist at both the state and national level in addition to his work on the OPRI Board.

Jay was married to his wife, Margie, for 52 years. Together, they had two children – a son, who lives in Germany with his family, and a daughter, who he shares a multi-generational household with. He also has four grown grandchildren and three great grandchildren. He enjoys gardening and working on his physical fitness, as well as remodeling and decorating his home.

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