Purpose of the Geographic Names Board
The purpose of the OGNB is to supervise the naming of geographic features within the state of Oregon and to make recommendations to the USBGN, which has final approval authority. The Board also serves in an advisory capacity to federal, State, and local government by reviewing administrative name proposals.
The Oregon Historical Society (OHS) is the custodian of the OGNB's correspondence and records and provides the OGNB with limited administrative support. The OGNB operates under its own bylaws, and the Executive Director of the OHS serves as permanent secretary and as one of the board members. The OGNB is comprised of 25 board members, 24 of whom serve without compensation and are appointed to three-year terms by the secretary. The president and vice-president are elected to two-year terms by its membership, and the president appoints committees as needed. The board members represent all of the state's geographic regions and are selected for their knowledge of the state's geography and history. Advisors from State and federal land management and mapping agencies and the private sector serve as consultants to the Board.
Proposing a Name
Geographic naming in Oregon is a public process by which anyone can submit a formal proposal for consideration. The OGNB’s Interim Committee reviews and investigates all...
Domestic Geographic Names Report Form
Proposals for new names, name changes, and name corrections should be made using this form and submitted directly to the OGNB either by email or through the US mail.
The Summer 2016 Board Meeting was held on Saturday, June 18, 2016 at Willamette University, Salem, OR. Download the meeting agenda and proposal...Learn More
Contacting the Oregon Geographic Names Board
Current OGNB officers are Phil Cogswell, President; Bruce Fisher, Vice-President; and Kerry Tymchuk, Secretary. Past President, Sharon Nesbit.
To reach the board please contact:
Bruce Fisher (Vice-President, Interim Chair)
Phil Cogswell (Board President)
The postal mailing address is:
Oregon Geographic Names Board
Oregon Historical Society
1200 S.W. Park Avenue
Portland, OR 97205
For more information on place names in Oregon, see Lewis L. McArthur's Oregon Geographic Names, 7th Edition, published by the Oregon Historical Society Press.