Meet Janelle

A mother of four children and a small business owner, Janelle Bynum works hard. It’s what her parents taught her to do.

The daughter of teachers, her parents taught Janelle that education was the key to a better, safer world. When drug violence threatened her inner city neighborhood in Washington, DC, Janelle put that ideal into practice. She earned scholarships and put herself through school, earning her Bachelor’s degree in Electrical Engineering and her Master’s degree in Business Administration.

Today, Janelle and her husband, Mark, live in Happy Valley with their children. Janelle operates her family’s small business, running four restaurants in our community. In her restaurants, Janelle continues to embody those ideals taught to her early in life, mentoring her employees, providing scholarships to continue their education and encouraging them to dream big.

Janelle’s work has always been about reaching out and helping people get ahead – and as our State Representative, she’s doing just that.

In Salem, she’s working hard, just like she’s been doing for more than a decade in our community. We can count on Janelle to find stable funding solutions for our public schools, so every Oregon student has the chance to dream big. She’s working for safe neighborhoods and smart development, keeping our communities intact and our quality of life high. And Janelle will work to level the playing field, so hard working Oregon families and small businesses have a fair shot at getting ahead.

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Janelle’s Priorities

Funding Our Schools First

I feel very fortunate to have had two teachers for parents. From a young age, they instilled the value of education in me and I’ll work to bring those values to all children growing up in Oregon. In Salem, I’m dedicated to finding stable funding for public schools to shrink our class sizes, increase graduation rates, reinvest in career and technical training, and make college more affordable. I’m also working to build stronger partnerships between community colleges and local businesses, to ensure students are being trained for the jobs most needed by businesses.

A Voice for Small Business

As a small business owner, I’ve seen firsthand the issues we need to address to help Oregon’s entrepreneurs flourish. I am very proud of our state for being a leader in raising the minimum wage and implementing paid sick leave, and I look forward each day to helping small businesses implement those new laws. As a member of the Portland Business Alliance, I’ve brought that voice and experience to the legislature to ensure that everyone has a seat at the table and small business is heard.

Livable Neighborhoods

Improvements to infrastructure are essential to the future of our state. Throughout our communities, a lack of sidewalks force children and families to walk along the side of the road only a few feet from fast moving traffic in order to get everywhere from school, to local shops, and to church. In the legislature, I’m fighting for the infrastructure we need such as sidewalks on school routes and main thoroughfares like Powell Blvd. as well as desperately needed lighting for pedestrian and driver safety. And I’m working to make a comprehensive transportation package a reality.

Fairness for Every Oregonian

I believe we have come a long way, but there is still work to be done to move Oregon forward. No matter what you look like, your gender, your race, who you love or where you are from, everyone deserves access to a quality education, to feel safe in their community, and to have the ability to support their family. In Salem, I’m fighting for an Oregon with more equitable outcomes, where everyone has an equal shot at opportunity.