Seattle, Washington , United States
Aug 19, 2009 04:13am
Caucasian - Government Reform - Pro Environment - Pro Marijuana Legalization - Single - U.S. Army -
|Info||Let's just get it out there: I am young and I was not born in Seattle. However, ever since I moved here I have felt a deep connection and sincere commitment to this city. |
Of course, I had to start somewhere.
I was born in West Virginia, where I spent my youth. I was raised by my parents in a house where current events and politics were a constant and ongoing discussion — a place where phrases like Civic Duty and Community Service were not just talked about, but expected.
As soon as I was old enough to volunteer on my own, around the age of 12, I gave my time to my community. It really started with a trip to Belle Glade, Florida, where I learned first hand that Third World problems such as childhood starvation, shortage of clean water, and abject poverty are present here in the United States. From that moment on, I knew I would spend the rest of my life in service and made several more volunteer trips to places such as Texas and Mexico.
By the time I was graduating high school, I felt pulled by a higher calling; I joined the U.S. Army at the age of 17. I spent my basic training at Ft Knox, KY and upon completion became a Cavalry Scout. By January 2003 I would be waiting in Kuwait until March to cross the border into Iraq in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. I returned to Iraq again in 2005 with the 3rd Squadron 7th US Cavalry attached to the 3rd Infantry Division.
I served five years in the Army, eventually earning the rank of Sergeant and my Airborne Parachutist Wings. I received an honorable discharge in 2007. Having traveled to several countries and up and down the east coast of the U.S., I felt a move to Seattle would be a unique opportunity for me to explore my own country.
In Seattle, I began volunteering with a local domestic violence prevention and victims' services program. I also got involved in neighborhood politics because I was invigorated by the spirit of my community. I was elected as a Precinct Committee Officer for the 34th District Democrats, which includes Vashon Island, neighborhoods south of Seattle, and my neighborhood — West Seattle.
As we dealt with the upcoming elections in 2008 and several important ballot initiatives together, we succeeded in raising awareness for the importance of politics, not just in Washington, DC but our local government. I was honored to be supported by the 34th's members to join the Executive Board as Hospitality Chair.
A major concern of the entire city has been the proposed Municipal Jail. The City of Seattle selected two locations in Highland Park for the new jail, as well as two other sites in Seattle. Community members became concerned for the health and identity of the neighborhoods and their economy, and I wanted to take action. I was elected to serve as Chair of the Highland Park Action Committee because of my commitment to this issue.
Since election, I have worked to develop positive relationships with other community leaders and city officials to further represent the community needs of the Highland Park neighborhood. During my time in office, we coordinated community events and worked together in dealing with the very controversial Nickelsville issue; speaking out on the issues of homelessness and the lack of shelter space in Seattle.
I was recently promoted from Counselor to Case Manager at the Family Adult Service Center in downtown Seattle. I'm working on a Bachelor's degree in Social Science and Psychology at Ashford University.
I volunteer with a domestic violence advocacy and prevention program, as well as at a youth homeless shelter in North Seattle.
I live in the Highland Park neighborhood in West Seattle, and have one dog, a miniature pinscher named Kayle. When not actively advocating for my community or the homeless in Seattle, I enjoy any opportunity I can get to read or debate both local and national politics with anyone who is willing.
I love to run and swim at the salt water pool at Lincoln Park. I love taking advantage of everything Seattle has to offer!