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PORTLAND-Dick Benner, a former attorney for the environmental group 1000 Friends of Oregon, is eschewing his directorship of the state’s Land Conservation and Development Department and joining the legal staff at the Portland-area regional government known as Metro.

After nine years with the state agency, Benner’ is leaving the state agency to act as a senior assistant counsel for Metro where he will primarily will be advising staff on a variety of issues. Metro handles land-use issues, most notably the region’s urban growth boundary.

Benner’s accomplishments with the state include improving protections for Oregon’s farm and forestland base and cultivating a growing relationship between ODOT and statewide land-use planning efforts.

In addition to working for 100 Friends, Brenner is a former executive director of the Columbia River Gorge Commission. The state’s Land Conservation and Development Commission will select Benner’s successor.

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