EVERETT — Candidates are crowding into a race for an open Snohomish County Council seat. More than a half a dozen contenders have filed paperwork with the state’s Public Disclosure Commission seeking to replace term-limited Councilmember Brian Sullivan, as of Thursday afternoon.
More people could still jump into the contest between now and the official filing week in May. An August primary will narrow down the field to two, before a November general election.
One of the first to declare candidacy was Mukilteo Mayor Jennifer Gregerson. She is serving her second term as mayor after being elected in 2013. Gregerson, 40, has raised almost $3,000. State Representatives Strom Peterson and Derek Stanford, along with Lynnwood Mayor Nicola Smith, have endorsed her run.
“I’m running because I want to help tackle the important issues facing our county: the growth that we expect, public safety, affordable housing and the opioid crisis,” Gregerson told The Herald after announcing her run.
Cecilia Wilson, an executive assistant for County Executive Dave Somers, entered with several hefty endorsements including Somers, County Council Chair Terry Ryan and former Everett Mayor Ray Stephenson.
“I will focus on the opioid crisis, improving public safety, innovative solutions to affordable housing, and advocating for funds to help fix our congested roads. I want to create more opportunities for the public to participate in the process,” said Wilson, 54, in a news release.
Megan Dunn, a leader in the push to create council districts in Everett, announced her candidacy on Presidents Day. Dunn, 43, is a program director for Northwest Center for Alternatives to Pesticides. Everett councilmember Brenda Stonecipher has endorsed her run.
“I’m excited to start this conversation — and campaign — about what kind of new leadership we want for Snohomish County. … We deserve to be thriving,” Dunn said in a news release.
Louis Harris, a vice president at the NAACP Snohomish County chapter, has also filed to run. The 31-year-old works at the state’s Department of Social and Health Services in financial services. So far he has raised about $1,700.
“I’m running to bring leadership that prioritizes inclusion, transparency and accountability,” Harris said in a news release. “Keeping our community safe and healthy will always be my top priority. … I want to invigorate our county’s commitment to innovation, technology and civic engagement.”
Since entering the race about this time last year, Alex Lark, 31, has raised over $18,000. He works at Housing Hope and is an officer in the U.S. Army Reserve. Lark also serves on Everett’s Planning Commission. Housing Hope founder Ed Petersen and former Congressman Brian Baird have endorsed his campaign.
“I decided to run for County Council because I believe we can create opportunities and improve the quality of life for working families by investing in affordable housing and a reliable transit and transportation system,” Lark said.
A second county employee has also joined the race. Tyler Verda, 33, works in homeless housing and community services. He has raised a little over $5,000 so far. His endorsements include state Reps. Mike Sells and Tana Senn, and Edmonds City Councilmember Adrienne Fraley-Monillas.
“Part of building a healthy, safe and thriving Snohomish County is going to require practical cost-effective solutions to homelessness and addiction. I have the experience that is needed to deliver real results,” Verda said in a news release.
Rounding out the list is Sharita Burton. She has filed election paperwork but has not made an announcement. Her campaign didn’t respond to a request for comment.
All of the candidates are running as Democrats. County Council District 2 spans Everett, Tulalip and Mukilteo.
Though term-limited in his council seat, Sullivan might be sticking around county government for a while longer. Last week, Sullivan announced his candidacy for county treasurer. Rob Toyer is also vying for that seat.
Lizz Giordano: 425-374-4165; firstname.lastname@example.org; Twitter: @lizzgior.