Vera Katz, a Jewish refugee who as mayor helped transform Portland from a sleepy backwater into a trendy city known for its public transit, eco-conscious design and live-work architecture style, has died after being diagnosed with acute leukemia.
Katz was diagnosed this month after undergoing dialysis for more than a dozen years following cancer treatment. She died Monday at age 84.
U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) called Katz an "indomitable woman" who left a lasting impact on Oregon and its largest city. She also served as the first female speaker of the Oregon House.
A visionary urban planner with the ability to reach across the aisle, Katz oversaw plans for the...