Kate’s there, for the community
- Tukwila Children’s Foundation – Board Member
The Tukwila Children’s Foundation (TCF) is a community, non-profit organization working to meet the unmet needs of Tukwila’s children. From the very start, Kate jumped at the chance to be an active part of a revitalization effort – inspired by diverse group of returning Foster High School graduates who wanted to shape TCF programs to impact Tukwila children most in need and in new positive ways.
TCF provides: scholarships, needs-funding to Tukwila schools, supports Tukwila Police and Fire Departments; grants in areas of food scarcity, rental assistance, resources for teachers, supplies for students, funding for Spirit of Giving, C.A.R.E Night, a new truck and drive-through shelter for the Food Bank; grant administration from Tukwila Human Services Department, sponsorships and funds to Tukwila Parks and supports after-school programming.
- Tukwila Fire Department Mobile Vaccine Effort – Volunteer
During the pandemic, Kate immediately volunteered to assist when King County Emergency Management Zone 3 activated Tukwila Fire Department (TFD) with a Mobile Vaccine unit to reach health workers, teachers, homebound residents, seniors in assisted living organizations, staff and people using the food bank, and union events for workers with jobs that exposed them to the public daily. This effort also assisted community members experiencing language/cultural/ access barriers to receiving the COVID vaccine. Kate took on administrative intake processes and vaccine card distribution to free up TFD personnel to give more vaccines to people. This process was transformed from a manual entry data collection and entry process to a digital intake process using tablets that contained vaccine reservation data – which, in turn, allowed her to help at Labor halls and the City of Seattle’s Lumen Field mass vaccination site.
- Tukwila Village – Advocate
Before getting elected, Kate championed the development of Tukwila Village, a six-acre mixed use neighborhood center at Tukwila International Boulevard and South 144th Street. Tukwila Village was envisioned to create a safe place for community, as well as foster neighborhood revitalization and civic pride. Today, with Kate’s support and votes, it includes a King County Library branch, a plaza/park and community meeting place and offers retail, office and residential space. Kate continues to listen to what Tukwila Village residents tell her needs improvement and actively seek solutions:
- public safety
- fair parking strategies
- shared use of the Sullivan Center
- and upholding residents’ rights to receive services they paid for from their landlord.
For these efforts, Kate received a “Thumbs Up Award” during a City Council meeting from a resident who is a Veteran of War.
- Riverton Park Tiny House Village Community Advisory Committee Member
As Council President, Kate helped usher in requests from faith community leaders that wanted to host Tiny House Villages on their properties to help with emergency transitional housing for people experiencing homelessness. Low Income Housing Institute (LIHI) started building Tiny House Shelters to respond to the homelessness crisis as a replacement for tents. Kate gave her full support for getting Tiny Houses in Tukwila and felt strongly enough about this program to volunteer to be on the Riverton Park Tiny House Village Community Advisory Board! Tiny Houses are safe, weatherproof and lockable. Tiny House Shelters allow program participants to reclaim their dignity and get on a path to permanent housing, employment and connection to supportive services at the highest rate of any form of emergency housing. On average, over 50% of participants who moved out of a tiny house secured permanent housing, much higher than most other forms of shelters.
- Tukwila International Boulevard Action Committee – Volunteer
Since making her home in Tukwila over three decades ago, there has been a strong grassroots effort in play to address issues on “Highway 99” – renamed Tukwila International Boulevard (TIB) when the City of Tukwila agreed to take ownership and stewardship of the roadway after annexing neighborhoods and businesses there from King County. Kate’s neighborhood borders TIB and her church is on the west side of it. Young people from her neighborhood cross it to attend school. She commuted to Seattle by riding a bicycle on it. Inspired by community group and police efforts to “Take Back the Boulevard,” Kate joined the ranks of TIBAC in envisioning strategies to revitalize TIB before and after crime ridden locations were shut down, advocating for Tukwila Village, participating in the Congress New Urbanism implementation planning and even pitched in for years on a monthly TIBAC effort to clean up garbage along the roadway. Although a handful of TIBAC members and Kate kept going through the pandemic (as it was an outdoor activity), it eventually stopped. She still picks up trash when walking her dog or out on hikes. If TIBAC revitalizes, Kate will be there to support their efforts! Meanwhile, positive transformation efforts continue to make it more pleasant and walkable for everyone who lives and works along the mile-long area, including new safe crosswalks and lower speed limits Kate supported on with her votes on City Council.
- Tukwila Pantry Food Bank – Board/Volunteer
Tukwila’s food bank, the Tukwila Pantry, requires ongoing support for utilities (electricity to run the coolers), transportation costs (truck payment, fuel, insurance), and staff expenses. Lines remain long every Saturday, while funding is slowly falling off. Kate served as a board member at TPFB for nearly a decade and continues to tap her personal network of business and government contacts to find more ways to drive financial support for this essential community service. Her ongoing personal support of Tukwila Pantry is another extension of Kate’s continuous volunteer work with such organizations as the Boeing Employees Good Neighbor Fund, the King County Employees Giving Program and the Washington State Combined Fund, which help our neighbors in need.
- Save & Sustain Tukwila Pool
In 1968, Tukwila residents joined with citizens throughout the county to pass the Forward Thrust bond issue to build 16 community pools. Kate knows the importance of learning how to swim in a community surrounded by water (Duwamish River, Lake Washington and Puget Sound). As a young child, her parents wanted to make sure their kids would be safe around our many rivers, lakes and saltwater. Convinced that every child should have the opportunity to learn how to swim, Kate strongly supported the creation of the Tukwila Pool Metropolitan Park District – even serving in an ex-officio capacity as the President of the Board of Commissioners. At that time, the TPMPD was overhauled, renovated and transformed into a fully self-managed organization. This culminated in citizens voting in Tukwila to transition to an independently elected Board of Commissioners! Kate visited the pool this year to see how things are progressing! The TPMPD has carefully managed their financials and is no longer in debt. They have a flourishing swim program and staff that successfully run a high school swim team, youth programs and events, lifeguard certification courses, scuba diving instruction and more!
- Tukwila School District Levies and Captial Projects Bond Measures
In 2016 Tukwila was the last school district in the region to provide the technological infrastructure to bridge the “digital divide” at our schools – and the subsequent four-year “Capital Levy” passed provided funding in 2021 used to meet more technology needs and address deferred maintenance on a prioritized schedule. As an Information Technology professional, Kate knows it is vital for our kids to have access to the technology tools that will help them keep up with students nationwide, compete for openings at college and have opportunities through trade unions to get good jobs. That’s why she participated on the committee that promoted the success of the Capital Projects Bond for Instructional Technology and School Improvements for the Tukwila School District and has supported our school levies (including funding for educational program renewal and operations) and capital project bond measures in the for decades with community outreach.
- Project Management Institute/GovWFollowMyLead program
To enhance people’s credentials to qualify for jobs or access to retraining for new professions, Kate volunteered 150 hours annually as a member of the Project Management Professional Credentials Committee (Puget Sound Chapter). As an instructor for the PMI PMP Exam Preparation course, Kate is committed to “paying it forward” to others for the help she received in preparing to earn her credentials. She is now participating in the Government Washington “Follow My Lead” Leadership program for women advancing in their careers.
- Political Organizations
As an elected Precinct Committee Officer and community organizer since 2005, Kate has served in a number of capacities individually and in organizational leadership, promoted citizenship, registered voters and distributed helpful information to voters in our community about elections, ballot issues and significant activities (such as the 2010 and 2020 Censuses, county charter updates, re-districting, etc.). Combined with her previous experience volunteering on committees for a chamber of commerce, community sports and recreation organizations, college alumni organizations, non-profit community contribution programs, community media boards, and regional government relations groups on transportation, Kate knows how to listen to people, understands government processes and laws, knows the issues and is highly qualified to represent the people of Tukwila as their Mayor.
- Global Organization
Kate has had the great fortune to live and work in the world community. As an emissary for the non-profit organization ORBIS International, Kate worked to improve eye care in developing countries. ORBIS fights preventable blindness worldwide, using a MD-11 aircraft, customized as an ophthalmological surgical unit (known as the “Flying Eye Hospital”). Kate left an 11-year position at the Boeing Company to join this organization for over a year. She flew to China, Bangladesh, India, Sudan, Jordan, Syria and Mongolia to support improving eye care in these countries. Later, she had the opportunity to work in international business and trade space, communicating with audiences from 165 countries. She learned about cultures worldwide and sees a reflection of those cultures in the faces of those who live here in Tukwila! Nothing would please her more than to continue to bring that rich experience and global perspective to serving you as your next Tukwila Mayor!