Chuck Scott was born to parents from Twin Falls, Idaho, a medical doctor and a homemaker. His father was a general practitioner and joined The Medical Clinic in Portland after WWII, moving his family to Oregon when Chuck was a few years old. He is the eldest of five sons, all of whom live in Oregon and Washington, four of whom are Eagle Scouts. Two brothers live within 15 blocks of where they grew up in Portland. Chuck’s parents are both deceased.

As the oldest child, Chuck felt a lot of responsibility, so when it came time for college, he headed to Lawrence University, a small liberal arts college in Appleton, Wisconsin, 30 miles southwest of Green Bay and far from home.  Chuck loved
snow skiing and was pleased to learn of several mountains nearby, only to discover they were essentially slopes in cow pastures.

After a year in college, he joined the Army’s 101st Airborne Division at Ft. Campbell, Kentucky and became a “Screaming Eagle” in a105mm howitzer battery where he trained for air assault operations. He made 35 jumps while in the Army but saw no combat. However, he did get to see some of the world while on maneuvers in Turkey. With a few days off, he was able to see some of Istanbul. He was just getting out of the Army as others from his unit were headed to Viet Nam.

Arriving back in Portland, Chuck became a student at Portland State University and a year later, married someone he had met in the service. With the birth of two sons, Chuck followed up on an ad for a PE course where he could learn to be a ski instructor and earn some income. This led to skiing two days a week for 14 years.

Chuck’s two sons both live in Portland. One is an engineering tech for a consulting engineer company and the other is the Director of Elections for Multnomah County. He has one grandchild, a boy named Parker. Parker is the only grandson of the five Scott brothers, so - the family name continues.

Chuck’s fondest childhood memories center around the Scott cabin on the Sandy River near Troutdale. From the time Chuck was 10 years old, his mother and the five boys would live at the cabin most of the summer. His dad would join them after work. Friends would also periodically join them to pitch a tent in the woods near their home where they would sleep, scared to death in the pitch dark of the night. They also built a raft of inner tubes and anchored it in the river for lots of summer time fun. The Scott cabin has been in the family for 61 years and its use is divided evenly among the five brothers each year. Chuck and Elizabeth opened up their cabin for a Rotary social several years ago.

Chuck’s mom didn’t work outside the home while raising their sons, but she was never idle. Their whole family was community oriented and they talked often about what that meant. They knew they had the capacity to help others less fortunate and a sense of giving back was developed. Mrs. Scott was a volunteer for the Portland Symphony Auxiliary and was personally responsible for raising a million dollars. Later she worked for 15 years at Metropolitan Family Services, coordinating in-home services for the elderly.

Chuck’s father was in the Army reserves, for what seemed like forever, and his annual two weeks of active duty was all he needed as a respite from his medical practice. That left little time for travelling, except for trips to Twin Falls, or for family camping and Chuck often felt he missed out on something as a youth. His dad enjoyed building things and thought it was good to know how to wield a hammer, repair a roof, etc. Although Chuck may have been resentful of having to do all those education-filled chores growing up, the experience comes in handy on their current property, and especially when they gained a new pet, Princess.

Chuck’s biggest hobby (size-wise) is Princess, a 20 year old Belgian Draft horse. Chuck and Elizabeth bought her when she was just 1 ½ years old. They both enjoyed watching draft horses at the county fair and having plenty of space, they decided to bring Princess home. With Chuck’s proficiency for projects, they knew they could build stalls and a fence. However, Chuck had just had surgery so he called in favors to help. Princess is truly a princess – she isn’t ridden and doesn’t participate in horse shows. They had originally intended to train her and bought a cart, but work got in the way and Princess peacefully stays in the pasture. They don’t even trailer her, but instead walk her down the road to be boarded at a neighbor’s if they’ll be out of town for a while.

Two passions carry Chuck’s heart – giving back to the community and education. Chuck has been a member of Rotary since 1987, joining at the encouragement of Oregon City Rotarian John Keyser, who was president of Clackamas Community College. John felt there was no better place to have the community college represented than Rotary. Chuck was a charter member of the Gladstone club and its fourth president. He transferred to the Oregon City club in 1998 and almost immediately was named President of the Oregon City Rotary Club Foundation, a position he held for ten years. Chuck is a great volunteer and Rotarian, appearing at almost every work party and social. He is also a Paul Harris Fellow and while in the Gladstone club, hosted a youth exchange student from Brazil, with whom he remains in contact.

Chuck seems to find a way to turn a passion into volunteerism. His love of skiing led him to being a ski instructor for 14 years. His interest in history and Timberline Lodge led to serving as a board member of the Friends of Timberline for 15 years, working to conserve and restore the art and furnishings of Timberline Lodge. He also serves on the Aurora Colony Historical Society Board and is a frequent volunteer at the Oregon City Farmers’ Market. Chuck introduced Rotary to the matching program at the farmers’ market and the Oregon City Rotary Club Foundation has been an ongoing financial partner, helping those in need stretch their dollars.

As for combining his two passions for volunteerism and education, Chuck takes his exercycle-powered flour mill, along with home grown wheat shafts, to the Oregon City Farmers’ Markets. There he teaches kids through the market’s P.O.P. Club (Power of Produce) about the food process, from wheat to flour to pancakes. The kids even get to eat the fruits of their labor.

Education has had a long hold on Chuck’s heart strings. After graduating from PSU with a BS and MS in Biology, he wanted to teach high school. However, the siren call of community college led to his being accepted at Clackamas, Portland and Lane community colleges. He began his career at CCC in 1969, with an initial five year stint teaching biology. CCC’s rapid growth soon created a need for more administrators. He shifted over to college administration, knowing that he could have more influence on the education process by selecting good instructors and yet still have contact with kids. By the time Chuck retired from CCC in 1997, he had nearly 30 years under his belt, having served as an instructor, department chair, division leader and associate dean. His division included science, math, engineering, nursing and computer science and of the 54 instructors working in his division, 49 were hired by Chuck. During his tenure, Chuck also oversaw construction of the science department’s Pauling Center and invited Dr. Linus Pauling, a two-time Nobel Prize winner, to its dedication. Chuck had the honor of personally escorting him throughout the day.

While working at CCC, Chuck met Elizabeth Howley, the college’s Horticulture Department Chair. They have been together for over twenty-five years and were married in 1990. They had discovered a property in rural Oregon City that they loved but the house was in bad shape. Knowing they could make it work with the proper financing, they applied for a VA loan only to discover that they needed to be married in order to qualify. The realtor asked if they would like him to leave the room so one of them could propose.

At Chuck’s retirement, Elizabeth anticipated she would have a full time gardener. She was surprised to learn that wasn’t the case when he told her that he’d work in the garden if she did. So, they hired horticulture students, with some direction. Chuck and Elizabeth pretty much eat only organic food, preserving what they raise and canning the tuna they buy on-the-docks in Chinook. They grind most of their own flour (with the afore-mentioned exercycle cum flour mill), supplemented with organic wheat buds from Bob’s Red Mill.

Chuck has been retired since 1997 and Elizabeth will be retiring the end of March 2013. He’s enjoying retirement and they are both looking forward to this whole new phase in their lives.

As for Rotary? Why did he join? He wanted to make an impact, to be with people who share the same feeling that you can be a positive influence on others and in the community. Has he accomplished this? Well, if you consider the passion expressed in his actions, such as giving back to the community through volunteerism, educating others whether it’s at the community college, on the ski slope or riding an exercycle at the local farmers’ market, preserving history and art at Timberline, or working nearly every Rotary project, then yes, Chuck is living his passion of making a positive impact. He is the epitome of a Rotarian.