By Mohamud Yussuf, editor of Runta News
2021 local Seattle area candidates are the most diverse in recent history of the county and statewide elections. The campaign which has started early this year, was increasingly attracting the interest and attention of the communities and media including Runta News. Candidates were also collaborating one another and forming alliance based on their interest of how they can attract contributors and voters to their race. After careful consideration to promote fair representation, Runta has come to the conclusion that we should not be bystander but to encourage and support participation in order to achieve equity and inclusivity; Therefore, we are strongly recommending this year the following candidates who are running for different levels of public office.
We selected the candidates based on their platform and agenda on which they are running, their experience, education, and qualifications, but not solely on their race or religion. The following are just some who we recommend while we leave most for the voters to choose.
- Dow Constantine is most familiar among them. He is well experienced politician who has served people over two decades. He is currently serving as the King County Executive during which he has led to become one of the most prosperous counties in the nation, and the least hit by the pandemic. His expertise and energy are still needed.
- Shukri Olow has been highly effective in the East African community and has served them in different capacity over a decade. As an immigrant and a woman of color, she will bring to the Council Chamber some perspectives that would help the county to thrive. She is for King County district 5. She is somebody to keep an eye on when voting and carefully choosing candidates from the ballot.
- Kim-Khanh Van, a refugee from Vietnam and a volunteer as a military JAG and supporter of veterans, has already proven track record as an elected official and small business owner. She will bring those experiences to the County Council especially district 9 which she will represent in the Chamber after you vote for her.
- Hamdi Mohamed with her impressive resume including serving as Organizing Director for President Biden’s Campaign, has the skills necessary to achieve real results for communities in and around the port. She is running for position 3 of Port Seattle which needs someone who has that kind of level of nationwide connections and expertise.
- Jimmy Matta, the man of the village, has the personality and charisma that brings people together. He is one of the friendliest Mayors we know. He has put the small city, Burien, on the national map, as he is currently serving as its mayor. Public safety, which is his main concern, is the first on his agenda. He is running for council member position No. 3 which is important for his Mayorship continuation.
- Mohamed Abdi for Tukwila Council Position 5 was born with politics in his blood. He is the youngest to ever run for office with innovation in his mind. His plans are included to dismantle the school to prison pipeline, limit law enforcement use of force, and increase accountability. Tukwila would appreciate such politician who can bring the youth’s concerns into the Chamber.
- De’Sean Quinn, one of the longest serving Tukwila Council Members is running for re-election and willing to continue serving his constituency of Position No. 7. He has made Tukwila regionally competitive, with a strong diversified economic foundation. He has passion for putting people first.
- Legend Mohamed Egal is seeking again SeaTac City Council Position No. 4. Egal represents good portion of those 49% whose faces and voices are not visible and audible at the Chamber. He has a track record of serving communities since he has arrived the US two decades ago. He is dynamic person whose Somali community nickname him ‘Madaale or Tireless’. His dream is to strengthen the relationship between people and police.
We apologize that we could not include all candidates we support in this list, but we our recommendation go beyond few whose work we have witnessed. Other candidates who voters should keep eyes on are the follows:
- Toshiko Grace Hasegawa for Port of Seattle P No. 4
- Norman Z. Sigler Port of Seattle P No. 1
- Hugo Gracia, Burien Council Member P No. 1
- Krystal Marx, Burien Council Member P No. 7
- Soleil Lewis, City of Des Moines, P No. 7
- Sara Nelson, Seattle City Council P No. 9
- Armen Papyan, Tukwila City Council P No. 1
- Michelle Sarju, Seattle School District No. 5
- Brandon K. Hersey, Seattle School District No. 7
- Iris Guzman, SeaTac Council Member P No. 6
- Jake Simpson, SeaTac Council Member P No. 2