Executive Dow Constantine
Dow Constantine is serving his third term as King County Executive. A former member of the King County Council and the Washington State Senate and House of Representatives, and a three-time graduate of the University of Washington, Dow is focused on meeting two of our greatest generational challenges: building equity and opportunity, and confronting climate change.
Mayor Bruce Harrell
City of Seattle
Mayor Bruce Harrell was elected the 57th mayor of Seattle in 2021. He previously served on the Seattle City Council in 2007 citywide, and re-elected twice, later serving his home district of South Seattle after City Council positions became districted. He was twice elected City Council President by his peers, one of just a few to ever serve multiple terms in that role. And, in 2017, Bruce served as interim mayor.
On the Council, Bruce was a leader on issues of racial equity, public safety reform, and economic and educational opportunity for all. He sponsored the law to “Ban the Box,” led efforts to pass Seattle’s first bias-free police law and was the first to advocate for the use of body cameras by SPD officers. He championed Seattle’s Race and Social Justice legislation, requiring all Seattle policies to be reviewed through an equity lens.
In 2021, Bruce was elected mayor of Seattle on a commitment to address the homelessness crisis with urgency and compassion, to ensure public safety for all communities, and to restore trust, hope, and unity in local government and civic life. With a belief that we can accomplish more when we work together, Bruce is working every day to drive innovation and effective solutions addressing the challenges – and opportunities – in front of Seattle. He believes creating One Seattle will be critical to address the needs of the day; a Seattle where we embrace our differences and celebrate our commonality.
Johnathan Hemphill is the Director of Strategy and Communications of the Lived Experience Coalition and is president of the King County and Greater Seattle Youth Action Board. Johnathan is deeply engaged in outreach and improving the well-being and services provided to youth with lived experience of homelessness. Prior to his role with the LEC, Johnathan worked as a legislative advocate to end youth homelessness and improve the foster care system – including the creation and passage of SB 5290, which ended the incarceration of minors for non-criminal offences across Washington State. He had served as the tri-chair of the Washington State Poor People’s Campaign Call for Moral Revival — bringing together impacted people, faith leaders, and community leaders to address systemic racism, systemic poverty, the war economy, and ecological devastation at the campaign’s inception.
Representing leaders with lived experience
Kirk McClain is a Regional Access Point Diversion and Assessment Specialist for Solid Ground, an organization that provides housing and community services for low income people in Seattle, WA. Kirk works directly with homeless and low-income individuals to help them find housing or pay their rent when they need help. He earned his BA from Western Washington University with an Interdisciplinary Pre-law concentration. After deciding not to attend law school, Kirk volunteered and worked for the Washington State Attorney General’s Office before moving to the private sector and working in the legal department of international pharmaceutical company Amgen.
Kirk’s compassion for disadvantaged and marginalized people eventually led him to volunteer with local neighborhood legal clinics, the Statewide Poverty Action Network, and the Washington Low-Income Housing Alliance After graduating from the Housing Alliance’s Emerging Advocates program, he taught political advocacy, co-facilitated advocacy workshops and frequently testified in Olympia to law makers on behalf of homeless and low-income people. He has also participated on two occasions in the annual One-Night Count which provides a snapshot of the number of homeless people living outside in King County. Because of his volunteer work, he was honored with the ‘Advocate of the Year’ award by the Low Income Housing Alliance in 2016. All of this work was predicated upon his own 5 year experience of homelessness. Not able to forget his love for the law, he went back to school and earned his paralegal certification while he was homeless and sleeping on the campus of Highline College.
He is the owner of Ascendant Equity, an Internet based credit repair company that teaches people how to repair their credit and defend against lawsuits from collection agencies. As the owner of two blogs, he writes about credit repair and issues regarding homelessness. Kirk loves outdoor activities, and when he saw that there were no Internet platforms for black hikers, rock climbers, and backpackers in Washington, he created a website called HeadPointe for blacks who are interested in learning more about those activities. The website provides information about rock climbing and catalogues his experiences hiking and backpacking in some of his favorite places in the Northwest like the Olympic Peninsula and Smith Rock in Oregon.
Representing leaders with lived experience
Councilmember Claudia Balducci
Representing the King County Council
King County Councilmember Claudia Balducci is a mom, transportation and affordable housing leader, and a former public safety official. She believes that government should tackle the big issues that matter to people, notably housing, transportation and the environment. Claudia represents King County District 6 on the Eastside, and in 2021 was re-elected by her colleagues to Chair the King County Council.
Councilmember Joe McDermott
Representing the King County Council
A third-generation resident of West Seattle, J. Joseph McDermott joined the King County Council in November 2010. He was reelected to a third full four year term in November of 2019. McDermott previously represented West Seattle, Burien, White Center and Vashon and Maury Islands in the Washington State Legislature for a decade.
Joe is a passionate advocate for vibrant and safe communities, reliable transit and transportation options, our environment and civil rights.
McDermott earned a Master of Public Administration from the University of Washington’s Evans School of Public Affairs and holds a Bachelor of Arts in History and Political Science from Gonzaga University. Joe completed the Senior Executives in State and Local Government Executive Education program at Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government in June of 2009.
McDermott served as a Senior Budget Analyst with the Seattle School District and worked for former Pierce County Prosecuting Attorney John Ladenburg. He has also occasionally taught history and political science courses at South Seattle Community College. While serving in the Legislature, several summers found Joe using his History degree leading underground tours in Seattle’s Pioneer Square in the shadow of the King County Courthouse.
A runner, he lives in West Seattle with his husband Michael and has served on the board of the Washington Trust for Historic Preservation, Southwest Youth & Family Services and West Seattle Helpline. His other civic activities and memberships include the Greater Seattle Business Association, West Seattle Chamber of Commerce, Vashon Allied Arts and the Highline Historical Society.
Councilmember Lisa Herbold
Representing the Seattle City Council
Councilmember Lisa Herbold was elected to the City Council in 2015 and serves District 1, West Seattle and South Park. She previously served as Councilmember Nick Licata’s Legislative Aide, since coordinating his 1997 campaign.
On the Council, Lisa has worked on issues of access, fairness, and a commitment to a shared quality-of-life. She’s helped craft and pass public policy that includes Paid Sick Leave, Secure Scheduling for retail and food service workers, a Rental Housing Inspection Program, legislation that prevents source of income discrimination against renters, $29 million housing bond for affordable housing, an acclaimed criminal justice diversion program, a police Observers’ Bill of Rights, and a municipal Income Tax. As a community member and advocate, Lisa has served on the boards of Neighborhood House, Homestead Community Land Trust, the Tenants Union, and the Young Adult Independent Living Project. She currently serves on the Kenney Foundation Board of Directors.
Councilmember Andrew Lewis
Representing the Seattle City Council
Councilmember Andrew J. Lewis is a fifth generation Washingtonian and was born and raised in Seattle. He most recently worked as an assistant city attorney in the Seattle City Attorney’s Office. Andrew is the son of a heavy equipment operator for Seattle City Light and a nurse at Harborview. He graduated with a B.A. in History and Political Science from the University of Washington, and holds a Masters degree from the London School of Economics and a law degree from the University of California, Berkeley. Frequent updates about Councilmember Lewis’ efforts are available on Facebook and Twitter.
Mayor Nancy Backus
City of Auburn, Representing Sound Cities Association
Mayor Nancy Backus – is a strong advocate of service to the community, with a particular passion for women’s rights and healthy communities. She is the recipient of the American Medical Association Dr. Nathan Davis Award for Outstanding Government Service, Dale Carnegie Human Principles in Action Award, Business and Professional Women’s Woman of Achievement Award, Soroptimist International Women Helping Women Award and serves on numerous boards and committees throughout the state and region advocating for the health, safety and prosperity of her community.
Backus is known for her regional consensus building and convened, along with King County Executive Dow Constantine and Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan, One Table – the initial effort towards the regional approach to tackling the issues of homelessness and housing affordability, One Table brought together government, business leaders, service providers, philanthropists, advocates and people with lived experience of homelessness to develop innovative solutions to the crisis.
Mayor Angela Birney
City of Redmond, Representing Sound Cities Association
Elected as Mayor in 2019, Angela Birney is now in her first term as mayor of Redmond. The community of over 65,000 is home to a variety of several large industries such as aerospace, high tech, video game production, and biotech, as well as thousands of small businesses where over 85,000 people are employed.
As Mayor, she is the executive leader, with oversight of eight departments and over 600 employees. The Mayor collaborates with Council to set the strategy, vision, and policies for the City of Redmond.
Redmond has a strong Mayor/Council, non-partisan form of government. Seven council members and the Mayor, all representing the community at large, are each elected directly by the people for staggered four-year teams.
Mayor Birney was elected to City Council in 2015 and served as Council President from 2018 to 2019. Prior to her Council service, she was the chair of the Redmond Parks and Trails Commission and volunteered her time at several different organizations throughout the Redmond community. She currently represents Redmond on the King County Regional Policy Committee, Puget Sound Regional Council Executive Board, Sound Cities Association Board and Public Issues Committee, Cascade Water Alliance Board, Hopelink Board, King County Regional Homelessness Authority, OneRedmond Board, and 1-405/SR 167 Executive Advisory Committee. She is a 2017 Leadership Eastside graduate.
Angela is a Washington native and grew up in Eastern Washington. She moved to Redmond in 1998. Formerly a middle school science teacher, she earned a Master of Education from Heritage University and a Bachelor of Arts in Biology Education from Eastern Washington University. She lives on Education Hill with her husband and daughters.
Councilmember Ed Prince
City of Renton, Representing Sound Cities Association
A proud resident of the Cascade neighborhood. Ed believes the strength of our government comes from collaborating with our residents and community partners.
Ed is the Executive Director of the Washington State Commission on African American Affairs and previously worked for the Washington State House of Representatives.
Ed is a former chair of the City of Renton Planning Commission, past chair of the Renton School District Bond and Levy campaign and a founding director of the Renton Community Foundation’s “The Next Curve”.
Councilmember Prince was elected to the City Council in 2011. During his time on council he has served on several regional boards and committees including:
- Association of Washington Cities (AWC) Legislative Committee
- Sound Cities Association (SCA) Public Issue Committee (PIC)
- Regional Transit Committee
- Regional Water Quality Committee
- Growth Management Planning Council
- SCA Legislative Committee
- AWC State and Federal Policy Committee