People using outdoor seating during a Bothell festival.
Bothell has turned into a hotbed for leadership on urban policy. The Urbanist hosted a meetup in Bothell during a street fair to enjoy its pedestrianized main street near city hall. (Doug Trumm)

Ally endorsements point to the best urbanist candidates around Puget Sound.

In city council races, The Urbanist Elections Committee only endorsed in Seattle and Bellevue this cycle, but there are plenty of exciting candidates in other Puget Sound cities. Check out the great slate of urbanists in Seattle, Bellevue, and for King County Council, and we also want to flag some candidates who appear to be wooing urbanists, climate advocates, and housing hawks based on endorsements from ally organizations.

Incumbents earned endorsements on the strength of their record in office, whereas some newcomers are poised to shake-up the unfortunate status quo that has developed in their respective city hall.

First a note: the elections committee hopes to expand its geographic scope one day, but we also want to keep our process rigorous and not spread ourselves too thin to do a good job. Reviewing questionnaires and doing follow-up interviews takes considerable time. We’re proud of our endorsements and we want to keep them strong as we expand our scope. Stay tuned!

Transit Riders Union endorsements

Let’s start with endorsements from the Transit Riders Union (TRU), an organization that keeps a close eye on candidates who support transit and economic justice measures like tenant protections, minimum wage increases, and services rather than aimless sweeps of homeless neighborhood locations. TRU and The Urbanist were fully aligned on Bellevue and Seattle City Council races; so, it’s clear we’re using similar values and criteria to judge candidates.

Lucky for urbanists who live outside King County’s two largest cities, TRU also endorsed in other cities. Cities like Bothell and Kirkland are doing really exciting things and forging ahead to expand housing and create safe streets, adding bike facilities and high quality pedestrianized spaces, such as Bothell’s Main Street or Kirkland’s Park Lane. They are making the case for urbanism-minded, quality of life interventions in suburban settings and people seem to be gobbling it up.

Electing the folks below will help keep that up and take it to the next level. Their websites are linked if you’d like to chip in a donation to their campaigns or volunteer to door knock or phone bank to give them an added boost.

Position 2: Mason Thompson
Position 4: Carston Curd
Position 6: Amanda Dodd

Position 2: Cydney Moore
Position 4: Patricia Hudson
Position 6: Krystal Marx

Position 6: Victoria Hunt

Position 1: Melanie O’Cain
Position 7: Corina Pfeil

Position 3: John Boyd

Position 2: Kelli Curtis
Position 4: John Tymczyszyn
Position 6: Amy Falcone

Mayor: Jeralee Anderson
Position 1: Osman Salahuddin
Position 3: Jessica Forsythe
Position 5: Vanessa Kritzer
Position 7: Angie Nuevacamina

Mayor: Kim Monroe

Position 1: Senayet Negusse
Position 3: Elizabeth Greninger
Position 7: Joe Vinson (Check out Ryan Packer’s profile on Vinson)

Position 6: Betsy Robertson

Mayor: Kate Kruller
Position 2: Armen Papyan

The Urbanist has also hosted op-eds making the case for re-electing Kirkland City Councilmembers Kelli Curtis and Amy Falcone, who were both key supporters of pedestrianizing Park Lane and expanding housing opportunities in Kirkland. (Disclosure: the Curtis campaign purchased advertising on our site.)

Sierra Club endorsements

Our friends at Sierra Club Washington made endorsements that were similar, backing the same Bothell crew as TRU, for example. They also endorsed in some races TRU did not. For Snohomish County Council, Sierra Club endorsed Megan Dunn in District 2. Dunn has been a leader on housing abundance and zoning reform efforts, as shown in coverage in The Urbanist. She also earned a Washington Bikes endorsement for her leadership on road safety.

Sierra Club also endorsed in Thurston County, at the far southern end of Puget Sound. Here’s how they landed.

  • Port or Olympia Commissioner Dist. 1 – Jasmine Vasavada
  • Port of Olympia Commissioner Dist. 4 – Joanna Manson
  • Thurston County Commissioner Dist. 4 – Wayne Fournier
  • Thurston County Commissioner Dist. 5 – Emily Clouse
  • Mayor of Olympia – Dontae Payne
  • Olympia City Council Pos. 3 – Dani Madrone
  • Olympia City Council Pos.5 – Yen Huynh
  • Tumwater City Council Pos. 2 – Angela Jefferson

Olympia has been a leader on “missing middle” housing reform to root out restrictive single-family zoning that is choking housing creation. Olympia State Representative Jessica Bateman cut her teeth on zoning issues at the Olympia municipal level before getting elected to the state house and winning missing middle reform at the state level. It would be great for Olympia to continue to be in the vanguard of housing abundance.

Washington Bikes endorsements

Washington Bikes endorsed in Bremerton, where bicycling and safe streets issues have been bubbling to the surface with efforts to improve local streets — which have taken 17 years in the problematic case of 6th Street. WA Bikes endorsed the following candidates:

WA Bikes also endorsed in Edmonds, which has seen a backlash on housing and safe streets projects as councilmembers have drifted in a conservative direction. One happy exception to that drift has been Susan Paine, who Ryan Packer profiled and who has earned the WA Bikes nod. Two new safety-minded candidates could offer Paine some help on council as shown below in WA Bikes endorsements:

In Tacoma, WA Bikes endorsed in two races:

Tacoma Council Position 7: Olgy Diaz
Tacoma Council Position 8: Kristina Walker

Walker serves on the Sound Transit Board and has flexed some transportation chops with her Downtown On The Go background. Meanwhile, Diaz also earned support from the Washington Housing Alliance Action Fund, showing some credibility on housing issues as well. Both are incumbents.

Washington Bikes also endorsed in Bainbridge Island, where big decisions on the buildout of a safe bike network hangs in the balance. They went with Leslie Schneider in City Council District 4.

Puget Sound has incredible opportunities to improve its housing, streets, and environment. With the right leadership, we could seize those opportunities. Don’t forget to vote by Tuesday, November 7. Ballots must be postmarked or in a drop box by 8pm to count.

Article Author
Publisher | Website

Doug Trumm is publisher of The Urbanist. An Urbanist writer since 2015, he dreams of pedestrianizing streets, blanketing the city in bus lanes, and unleashing a mass timber building spree to end the affordable housing shortage and avert our coming climate catastrophe. He graduated from the Evans School of Public Policy and Governance at the University of Washington in 2019. He lives in East Fremont and loves to explore the city on his bike.