Running for public office is a new and exciting chapter for me and my family. I grew up in Federal Way and had a rough go of it through high school. A family tragedy a few years prior had left me in a pretty rough state, and I struggled to find meaning in education. After spending my childhood in "gifted" classes, and on honor rolls, I barely graduated. I could have benefited from a school with a dedicated mental health counselor, and will work hard to keep Mercer Island schools equipped with these professionals.
After a year off I attended Highline Community College where my love for learning was finally reignited. I eventually found myself in an acting class, and things just clicked. Next thing I knew, I was attending one of the most prestigious acting schools in the world, the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Arts.
Upon returning to Seattle, I began working in TV commercials and local theatre. I was also fortunate enough to tour the state with several companies as a teaching artist, engaging youth through art. I also found the place that would become our home.
During my fourth summer as an actor with Wooden O, my now wife picked me up after a show at Luther Burbank Park. We were looking for our first place together, and hadn't planned on leaving Seattle. But when she said, "why don't we live here?" it seemed so obvious. We've lived here for the last nine years and couldn't be happier. We've started our family here.
After having kids, I stepped away from acting and began managing a food tour company in Pike Place Market. I managed a team of 25 employees, as well as 35 small business partnerships. I worked to make deals that kept our partners happy, while making sure our business was viable. It was a delicate balance. I hope to bring that mentality to the Mercer Island City Council.
I recently changed jobs and currently work at a startup in Pioneer Square, where I manage the company's largest client accounts. We partner with local chefs and restaurants (many women-owned and/or immigrant-owned) providing a platform for them to grow their business and benefit from the region's tech boom.
I'm also one of the 41st Legislative District's two elected representatives to the Washington State Democratic Central Committee, where I serve on the Affirmative Action Committee. Additionally, I am currently enrolled in an online Diversity & Inclusion Management program through Cornell. Equity is very important to me, and I hope to use my position to inspire people of all backgrounds to get involved with city leadership.