Pierce County can do BETTER for you and your families. I've got the experience and the passion for our community to represent you effectively. You won't find anyone who will work harder to improve your quality of life and that of your neighbors and broader community.
I'm a long-time Gig Harbor resident, mother of two teenagers, a current Gig Harbor City Council member, host of HarborChat on KGHP-FM and I serve among incredible community leaders on a number of Boards and Commissions. Read more.
As a Gig Harbor City Councilmember, I've work hard for my constituents and am known being able to bring people together to get positive things done for the community. District 7 needs strong representation by someone who has local government experience, strong relationships in all of the different communities and who approaches things from a non-partisan, community-benefit stand-point. I would be honored to work for you.
I'm truly humbled to have earned the trust of many of our community's leaders, including U.S. Representatives Derek Kilmer and and Marilyn Strickland, current Pierce County Chair Derek Young (Dist. 7), Former County Councilperson Terry Lee, Speaker of the Washington State House of Representatives Laurie Jinkins, County Councilpersons Ryan Mello, Marty Campbell and Jani Hitchen and many other wonderful people (elected and otherwise) in neighborhoods throughout Pierce County. I'm excited to have the opportunity to make you proud!
As your Pierce County Councilperson, I'll focus on issues you've told me are most important. Issues including:
- Homelessness and Affordable Housing
- Increasing Community Safety (reducing crime & decreasing response times)
- Increasing resources and improving access to Mental/Behavioral Health services
- Our Environment - Addressing Climate Change and protecting our beautiful Pierce County lands and waters
- Protecting our natural beauty and the unique characters of our neighborhoods through carefully planned growth in the right places
- Safer and more accessible transportation and Broadband availability to everyone
- COVID Recovery and Economic Development assistance for our small businesses
All the issues we face in Pierce County are interconnected. How can you talk about the environment without talking about affordable housing, homelessness and transportation? How can you work on public safety without considering behavioral/mental health and economic vitality? District 7 needs a representative who isn't focused on just one or two issues, but can look broadly at how all County systems interconnect. District 7 needs a leader who can help the County move forward in a way that provides everyone with equitable opportunities for a healthy and happy life.
Here are a few of the issues I'm hearing a lot about from residents as top concerns:
Housing & Homelessness
This is a passion area of mine. I'll focus on ensuring everyone has a safe home and that our communities are safe and healthy. I have a great deal of experience with the whole spectrum of housing models: I served as the State House of Representatives Housing Analyst for 5 legislative sessions. I've worked for homeless shelters. I've worked for Habitat for Humanity. All of that experience has made it clear to me that we need a system of strategic opportunities to fit different situations that can be quickly and aggressively implemented. We've reached a breaking point with homelessness and enough is enough: What we've done in the past either is not working, or needs to be scaled up to make a real impact. We need to take bold steps to figure this out once and for all for the benefit of all people and the whole community. I'm ready to get to work.
Lowering the Crime Rate
Increasing crime in District 7 is of concern to all of us. I'll work hard to lower the crime rate by partnering with our local law enforcement community, service providers, neighborhood groups, community leaders, business owners and other interested parties. Everyone deserves to feel safe in their neighborhood and broader community. We need enough law enforcement officers to enable them to be proactive and to implement greater levels of community policing. We need to make sure officers have the training and equipment they need to be effective, equitable and accountable. Adding resources like mental health professionals/crisis response teams to help law enforcement respond appropriately means freeing up our officers to focus on priority crimes and the worst offenders. I am committed to working on all of these things collaboratively with community stakeholders.
As we grow, it's critically important to ensure that our our amazing natural environment, one of the reasons that Pierce County is such an amazing place to live, is treasured and preserved. I've been involved in environmental causes for many years and have helped spearhead a number of them (Harbor WildWatch, for example, and most recently the Gig Harbor Land Conservation Fund). I've served on the County Conservation Futures Board and I'm currently leading the effort to conserve more than 40 acres of critical salmon habitat (and archeologically important lands). It is IMPERATIVE that we are thoughtful and careful about how/where we develop to ensure we have room for people, plants and animals. Our people deserve equitable access to open space and the outdoors. We all know that preserving habitat for our animal neighbors - including keystone species like salmon - is not only important for our ecosystem as a whole, but also for our iconic commercial fishing industry. I am excited to implement policy at the County level that will help combat Climate Chang. I'm committed to helping implement the County's Sustainability 2030 plan and look forward to working with all stakeholders to ensure a healthier environment into the future.
COVID Recovery/Economic Development
Having good, living-wage jobs here in Pierce County is critical to ensuring our residents are stable and thriving. Having enough jobs locally also impacts housing and transportation: When people live near where they work, we can cut transportation costs, ease traffic congestion and improve the quality of life for folks who can spend more time with their families and in their communities. I started my career in economic development and I love serving our local Chamber of Commerce and Main Street Association today. I've been a strong advocate for our local businesses while on the City of Gig Harbor Council. Ensuring everyone has adequate broadband is part of the economic development/COVID recovery discussion.
My guiding mission will always be to improve the quality of life in our communities and ensure that everyone has equitable opportunities to live happy, healthy and productive lives.