Seattle has emerged as the city where technology companies come to start and grow. The Pacific Northwest is home to many of the innovations that have shaped our lives for the past 40 years, from the cell phone and the personal computer to the internet and cloud computing, and new technologies that you are creating today. Yet our city is at a crossroads, facing challenges that threaten our ability to both grow and maintain our quality of life.
As technology leaders we work hard to create new jobs and opportunities, and our presence in Seattle is critical to our success. Seattle needs to be a place where we can attract diverse and innovative talent, where our employees can afford to live and safely commute to work, and where our community takes decisive action to solve problems. Next week we have the opportunity to elect a mayor who can partner with us to accomplish these things, which is why we are voting for Jenny Durkan.
Our next mayor must be a proven leader and manager. We know running a successful company means strong management skills to balance the needs of our employees, investors, and customers. The city government, a $5 billion business, is no different. As a U.S. Attorney appointed by President Obama, Jenny demonstrated her ability to lead a large government organization working on complex challenges.
Nothing is more critical to our success than growing and attracting the talent necessary to fill the backlog of jobs available across Seattle companies. People want to live in Seattle, yet like so many people who already live here, finding affordable housing is keeping potential candidates away. Seattle needs to be a place where people of all income levels can live, work, and raise their families. Jenny’s agenda to increase availability and affordability will ease the housing crunch. Her plan to provide free community college to Seattle high school students will help diversify and increase our talent pipeline, making it easier for Seattle companies and startups to find the talent they need, and provide more opportunities to our residents at risk of getting displaced.
Seattle is fortunate to have two respected candidates to choose from this election, and we appreciate the vision Cary Moon has articulated for the city. Yet our next mayor shouldn’t believe that Amazon’s decision to locate a second headquarters and 50,000 jobs outside Seattle is a “relief.” Instead we need a mayor capable of maintaining a quality of life across our communities and neighborhoods that attracts both businesses and residents.
Like technology, Seattle is always changing. While other candidates would prefer to pause our progress and hope change will subside, we know change will happen and we need a leader who will engage all voices, and take decisive action to make change work for all of us. Jenny is the candidate who will work with us, which is why she is our candidate for Mayor.