Name and location of repository
Level of description
Oral history interview with Fred D. Miller
- 1993-10-12 - 1994-06-07 (Creation)
.1 cubic feet 11 audiocassettes (8 hr., 35 min., 5 sec.)
Name of creator
Fred D. Miller was born in Seattle, Washington, in 1942. His family came to Portland, Oregon, when he was six months old. He attended Willamette University for one year, then Portland State University, graduating in 1964. He then pursued his doctorate at Michigan State University, where he studied economic development. He completed his dissertation in 1967 and took a teaching job at Oregon State University in order to avoid the draft. While teaching at OSU, he met his first wife, Janet, and they were married soon after. He began his involvement in Oregon politics as special assistant to the director of the Oregon Department of Transportation in 1973. He then became the director of the Oregon Department of Energy in 1976. He returned to the Department of Transportation as its assistant director in 1979, then served as director from 1982 to 1987. He later became an executive at Portland General Electric. He married Karla Wenzel around 1990. Most recently, he was chief administrative officer of the city of Portland.
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Scope and content
This oral history interview with Fred D. Miller was conducted by Pat Collmeyer at the Portland General Electric offices in the World Trade Center in Portland, Oregon, from October 12, 1993, to June 7, 1994. Miller discusses his family background and early life in Southwest Portland. He also discusses his experiences at Willamette University, Portland State University, and Michigan State University, including studying abroad in Argentina. He talks about becoming a professor at Oregon State University in 1967 in order to get a deferment from the draft, and about teaching abroad in Peru and with World Campus Afloat. Miller discusses his involvement with the Oregon State Legislature as special assistant to the director of the Oregon Department of Transportation, and talks about the Mount Hood Freeway. He also talks about working with George Baldwin, Glenn Jackson, and Bob Burco. He then describes his time as director of the Oregon Department of Energy from 1976 to 1979, replacing Lon Topaz, and discusses nuclear power plants and electrical utilities. He also talks about working with Janet McLennan and Mike Katz. Miller discusses his time as assistant director, then director, of the Oregon Department of Transportation, from 1979 to 1987, including funding and gas taxes. Miller also discusses working under governors Tom McCall, Bob Straub, Vic Atiyeh, Neil Goldschmidt, and Barbara Roberts. In addition, he talks about Corrections Director Michael Francke and his murder in 1989. Miller closes the interview by discussing the various management styles of the many governors he served under.
System of arrangement
Conditions of access and use elements
Conditions governing access
Collection is open for research.
Conditions governing reproduction
Copyright is held by the Oregon Historical Society. Licensed under Creative Commons, BY-NC-SA: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/4.0/
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Immediate source of acquisition
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Existence and location of copies
Related archival materials
Preferred citation: Oral history interview with Fred D. Miller, by Pat Collmeyer, SR 1175, Oregon Historical Society Research Library.
Forms part of the Oregon Legislature Oral History Series.
Description control element
Rules or conventions
Finding aid based on DACS (Describing Archives: A Content Standard), 2nd Edition.
Subject access points
Place access points
Name access points
- Oregon. Department of Energy (Subject)
- Oregon. Department of Transportation (Subject)
- Atiyeh, Victor (Subject)
- Baldwin, George M. (George Melvin), 1911-1999 (Subject)
- Burco, Robert A. (Subject)
- Francke, Michael (James Michael), 1946-1989 (Subject)
- Goldschmidt, Neil E., 1940- (Subject)
- Jackson, Glenn L., 1902-1980 (Subject)
- Katz, Myron, 1926- (Subject)
- McCall, Tom, 1913-1983 (Subject)
- McLennan, Janet, 1926- (Subject)
- Roberts, Barbara, 1936- (Subject)
- Straub, Robert W. (Subject)
- Topaz, Lon (Subject)
- Collmeyer, Pat (Patricia Malone) (Subject)