Representative Paul Evans was born in Salem, Oregon to Butch and Chloe Evans. He was raised in nearby Monmouth. He graduated from Central High School in Independence, Oregon in 1988.
At age 18, Paul was elected to serve the people of Monmouth as a city councilor, becoming one of the youngest elected leaders in the nation.
Like his father, uncle and cousin before him, Paul joined the volunteer fire department and served with Polk County Fire District #1 while in college. After graduating from Western Oregon State College (now Western Oregon University) with a degree in Public Policy and Administration in 1992, he enlisted with the United States Air Force.
Paul spent over four years on active duty serving most of that time with the 728th Air Control Squadron. Upon completion of his military commitment in 1997, he returned home to further his education, earning his Master of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies with emphasis in American Government, Environmental Policy, and Rhetoric at Oregon State University. In the fall of 1997, Paul joined the Oregon Air National Guard. In 1998, he returned to public service when elected Mayor of the City of Monmouth. From 1999 through 2001, he taught at Western Oregon University and Oregon State University and volunteered as a senior firefighter with Polk County Fire District #1.
Shortly after the September 2001 attacks on the Pentagon and the World Trade Center, the 116th Air Control Squadron—Paul’s Oregon Air National Guard unit—was recalled to twenty-four (24) months of active duty. This was among the longest call-ups of any National Guard unit in the nation. After completing his call-up, he volunteered for additional tours with duty stations both stateside and overseas.
After completing this service, Paul returned to Oregon and was asked to join the senior policy staff of Governor Ted Kulongoski. There, he served as a senior advisor for Emergency Management, Military, and Veterans’ Affairs for over three years.
Paul departed the Governor’s Office in April 2010 and entered the private sector as Chief of the Protection and National Security Division for High Impact Technology (HIT). His portfolio included oversight of emergency services equipment and infrastructure, product development, marketing, and sales. Paul left HIT in February 2012 and continued as an adjunct professor at several colleges and universities throughout the Willamette Valley. He has been a full-time Speech Communication Professor at Chemeketa Community College since 2013.
State Representative Evans was sworn into office on January 12th, 2015. He was re-elected to serve the people of House District 20 in 2016, 2018, and again in 2020. His priority issues include education, emergency preparedness, the resilience of small businesses, transportation, veteran services, and workplace fairness. He served as the Chair of the House Committee on Veterans and Emergency Preparedness during the 2017 and 2019 Legislative Sessions.
Since taking office Paul has served on numerous policy committees ranging from the Education Committee to the Human Services and Housing Committee. Currently, he serves as the Chair of the House Special Committee on Wildfire Recovery, Co-Chair of the Joint Committee on Ways and Means Subcommittee on Public Safety, Joint Committee on Transportation, Joint Committee on Ways and Means, House Committee on Business and Labor, and House Committee on Veterans and Emergency Management.
Representative Evans was the primary Co-Chief Sponsor of House Joint Resolution 202B that became Ballot Measure 96 in the 2016 General Election. More than 83% of voters approved, and the measure permanently set-aside 1.5% of all Lottery Revenues for Veterans Outreach and Services.