Dotterrer to challenge Bates again for state Senate seat

Retired Marine, who lost by only 282 votes in 2010, wants Legislature to focus more on jobs

Dave Dotterrer, a retired Marine Corps colonel who lost his inaugural 2010 state Senate race by a gnat's eyelash, plans to run again on the Republican ticket for the District 3 seat held by Democrat Alan Bates of Medford.

Ashland resident Dotterrer, 62, fell short four years ago with the recount concluding incumbent Bates won by 282 votes.

Dotterrer told the Mail Tribune that he plans to make his official announcement on Sept. 12, the first day candidates can file with the Oregon Secretary of State's office for the November 2014 general election.

Bates, 68, a medical doctor with a longtime practice in Medford, said Thursday that he is definitely running for re-election to the post he has held since 2005. However, he was on vacation when contacted by telephone and declined to discuss politics until he returns home.

Since the last election, Dotterrer says he has been studying the legislative process up close as a legislative aide in the past three sessions.

What he saw was lacking, he said.

"It is much too random and subject to legislative whim," he said. "We do not have a good way to say this is what we want to accomplish, how we get there, how we work our way through.

"And there is no place where that is more evident than when it comes to the Oregon economy and jobs," he added. "The Legislature does not have a good process for producing the outcome the people of Oregon need."

Noting that he has a background in strategic planning, he said he plans to bring that leadership to Salem.

"I am very much concerned about jobs and our economy," he said. "We need to help produce private sector jobs. The government does not produce jobs."

He would like to see the state shed unnecessary regulatory policies and taxes that unfairly burden businesses.

"We have a problem with our overall economy, particularly our rural economy," he said. "All the little things that hurt business are accumulative. They build and build. I want to lessen that burden."

Jobs mean more than an income to individuals, he said.

"Jobs are not just about the economy," he said. "A job is something which is very personal and spiritual in nature. People who have jobs participate in society. It says something about who we are in society. It is not just an economic issue."

Dotterrer also said he would like to see the process include more of a bipartisan approach, noting the GOP minority was not given the opportunity for much input during the recent session.

"I see no reason, just because you are in the majority, not to at least get the minority's input," he said, noting he would take the same approach if the Democrats were in the minority.

Dotterrer said he hopes to debate the incumbent during the campaign.

"It would be good for the people of the district," he said.

A 1973 graduate of Oregon State University majoring in business administration, Dotterrer served in the Marine Corps from 1973 until retiring in 2001. He has since served as a consultant with Science Applications International Corp., the largest employee-owned research and engineering firm in the nation.

He has served on the Ashland City Planning Commission, the Jackson County Veteran's Advisory Committee and the National Board of Directors of the Young Marine Program.

Dotterrer is married to the former Kerry Roberts of Ashland. They have two grown children.

Reach reporter Paul Fattig at 541-776-4496 or email him at

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