Clayton Zoram Rees was born Oct. 3, 1940 in Prescott, Ariz. to Alvin and Bunola (White) Rees and passed away April 12, 2021 in Beaver, Ore. at the age of 80.
Clayton served in the United State Marine Corps during Vietnam and was honorably discharged.
Following his military service, Clayton graduated from Portland Community College with an Associate Degree in Business and Accounting. He was an honors graduate at Portland State University earning a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology in 1970.
Clayton received his Masters degree of Science in Rehabilitation Counseling from Western Oregon University in 2004. From 2005 to 2015 he held the position of adjunct faculty at WOU and served on the WOU College of Education, Curriculum Advisory Committee.
Clayton has a long history of working with, developing and managing programs for young people with disabilities. In 1984 he began his career as a private vocational counselor and business consultant. In 1996 he was employed by the State of Oregon to work with people with disabilities and working with local school districts assisting youth with disabilities in Tillamook, Astoria, and Hillsboro.
In 2001, Clayton became a program manager for the State of Oregon, Office of Vocational Rehabilitation for the Career Workforce Skills Training Program in five Oregon community colleges.
In 2002, Clayton was the youth transition program coordinator for Oregon Department of Human Services, Office of Vocational Rehabilitation. In 2006 he was honored as the Outstanding Special Needs Administrator of the year by the Oregon Assoc. of Vocational Special Needs Personnel.
In 2010, Clayton retired from public service, but was asked to come out of retirement to complete work on a $2.8 million federal model demonstration grant known as Project ACCESS. He was the Project Manager for the grant, a collaborative effort between Oregon Dept of Human Services, Office of Vocational Rehabilitation, Oregon Dept of Education, University of Oregon, College of Education and five school districts in Lane County and five Confederated Native American Tribes in Oregon. The program established innovation programs for youth with disabilities transitioning from high school to post-secondary activities, including independent living, higher education and employment.
Clayton formally retired from State of Oregon employment in 2014. Prior to his retirement, Governor John Kitzhaber appointed Clayton to the State of Oregon Rehabilitation Council and in 2013 Governor Kate Brown appointed Clayton to another three year term. An award given annually by Portland State University “Swift” is given each year in Clayton’s name. In 2019 the Governor appointed Clayton to a 3 year term on the Oregon Board of Denture Technology.
Recently Clayton served as an elected director and vice chair for the Tillamook County Emergency Communications District, Tillamook County Commission on Children and Families and was appointed to the Tillamook County Health Council. He was an elected member of the Rockaway Beach city council for 9 years.
Clayton has devoted his lifetime to promoting independence and success for young people with disabilities. He has presented at local, state, national and international conferences on youth in foster care, and youth with disabilities. He has a long history of public service within Tillamook County.
Through his work in public administration, as a private business owner, and working for not-for-profit organizations, Clayton has devoted his energies in gratitude for all the kindnesses he and his family have received from the citizens of Tillamook, as well as public, private and not for profit organizations.
Clayton is a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter- Day Saints.
Clayton is survived by his wife Darlene Rees. 2 sons, Richard and Bryan Rees.
5 step children, Dee Dee Burynski, Leslie Waterman, Len Waterman, Annie Bishop and Amanda Maldonado. 1 brother Robert Rees. 2 sisters, Gloria and Evelyn Rees. 12 grandchildren and 7 great grandchildren.
Memorial services will be held May 8, 2021 starting 1 p.m. at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter- Day Saints in Tillamook. Inurnment with military honors will be held May 10, 2021 starting 10:30 at Willamette National Cemetery, Portland, Oregon.