A new district aide for Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.) has dabbled in a few different pursuits over the years: musician, policy analyst and former precocious Portland mayoral candidate.
Jake Oken-Berg became directly involved in politics when in 2000, at age 19, he finished second to the incumbent in Portland's mayoral election. He almost forced a run-off election. After college, he worked for Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), handled policy matters for the Oregon Business Council and cultivated a strong local musical career in his self-named band. The Pomona grad is now a field representative with Merkley.