Lane County Assessor Mike Cowles receives Excellence in Community Service Award

Lane County Assessor Mike Cowles receives Excellence in Community Service Award
Posted on 11/06/2017

Mike Cowles, Lane County’s assessor and tax collector, was recognized as a 2017 Public Sector Champion by Thomson Reuters. The Public Sector Champion Awards recognize individuals and jurisdictions that serve their communities with excellence, leadership and accountability.


As the Excellence in Community Service Award recipient, Cowles is one of five assessment and taxation professionals recognized nationally by the company.


“It is an honor to be recognized for community service,” said Cowles. “All of us at Lane County Assessment and Taxation take customer service and our work on behalf of the community very seriously.”


According to the award summary, “Public service is in Mike Cowles’ DNA. His father was an appraiser, and now Mike is proud to carry on the tradition as the assessor and tax collector for Lane County, Oregon. He finds helping fellow residents very rewarding, and often calls them after hours or on the weekends when it’s more convenient for them. He says doing so has a way of disarming people who typically aren’t in a ‘good mood’ when they’re talking about taxes. But by going the extra mile to reach out to people, Cowles and his fellow residents can have the kind of conversations that enhance understanding and trust.”


Cowles has served as Lane County’s assessor and tax collector since 2013. He began his career at Lane County in 1991 as a property appraiser. He has worked as a sales data analyst, appraiser and appraiser analyst, among other roles, during his 26 years in the field. Cowles graduated from Oregon State University with a bachelor’s in business and in hotel, restaurant and tourism management in 1990.


The award was presented at a conference in Texas this fall. Thomson Reuters produced a video honoring Cowles. The video is available at


About Lane County Assessment and Taxation:

The Assessment and Taxation office collects revenue for 83 taxing jurisdictions across Lane County, including local governments, schools, fire districts, and other special districts. There are more than 178,000 taxable properties in Lane County. The total taxable value for all properties in Lane County was $32.8 billion in 2017.