The Mayor and Seattle City Council recently announced the initial 13 appointees selected to serve on the City of Seattle’s new Community Involvement Commission (CIC). The CIC will ultimately be comprised of 16 equity champions who will work to ensure that our City departments are creating and implementing equitable engagement strategies that lead to more relevant and impactful public participation. They will also provide feedback on the development of City departments’ community involvement plans. All the appointments are subject to City Council confirmation.
Mayoral Appointee: At-large Member
Alex Hudson was born in East King County to a farming family. She earned a B.A. in Political Science with minors in Sociology and Economics from Western Washington University and has lived in Seattle’s First Hill neighborhood for 7 years. She has a background in harm reduction policy, event production, the arts, economic and community development, and citizen journalism. She is the Executive Director of the First Hill Improvement Association, which works to make the rapidly growing First Hill community a safe, welcoming, and vibrant place where all people can thrive. She is on the board of the Freeway Park Association and the Swedish Medical Center Standing Advisory Committee and is active in issues and projects around equity and urban planning. Alex is a passionate flâneuse who spends her free time with her grandma, her cat, a book, or exploring the city!
What inspired you to serve on the Community Involvement Commission?
Involvement and engagement are not boxes to check or requirements to fulfill, they are the path by which we collectively decide our shared futures. That process deserves to be honored, respected, and prioritized. Our city is undergoing profound changes, and I believe that we get to better solutions to those challenges when processes are designed to include the most number of perspectives, and I’m excited to see how we can scale up equity and power-sharing to shape policies and programs that create the greatest good.
We’ve taken to calling our Community Involvement Commissioners “EQUITY CHAMPIONS!” Do you accept this superhero moniker and what does it mean to you personally?
Hesitantly! I don’t believe working to level the hierarchies and inequities that have given me so many advantages in life and denied them to others without cause makes me a superhero. Rather, I believe it’s imperative that all people work to find ways to find where their privilege meets with other’s oppression and do their darndest to break that down. I’m proud to champion dismantling systems that keep people and communities at a disadvantage and am grateful for the opportunity to serve the people of Seattle in lifting their power.
What is your unique real-life superpower?
I am really, really good at cribbage. It’s a superpower I got from my grandpa!
What do you hope the Community Involvement Commission will bring to the City?
My hope is that we guide the City’s systems of engagement to foster collaborative conversations that lead to plans and projects that have broad community support and ownership. I want for more people’s voices to matter, that we center engagement and empowerment at the margins, and that people feel that the government cares for and prioritizes their communities and needs.
Which local organization or person do you consider to be a true superhero and why?
There are so many! One that’s always top of mind is Rex Holbein, who founded and runs an organization called Facing Homelessness. They focus on providing people living in homelessness with the most valuable resources of all, compassion, dignity, and love. I believe that adopting their model of radical kindness and commitment to the transformative power of empathy is a key ingredient to a more equitable, humane, and just society.
Learn more about the Community Involvement Commission at seattle.gov/neighborhoods/community-involvement-commission.
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