#EmeraldLove: Cortez Charles

“…it’s something that’s authentic; something that’s homegrown.”

donate-emeraldloveOctober 18th – October 25th is the Emerald’s inaugural Giving Campaign where we will raise essential support to keep bringing you the news, commentary and culture you care about!

For Cortez Charles, life-long South Seattle resident, the Emerald is the true expression of his beloved home.

Cortez calls South Seattle Emerald a positive and inspiring publication that authentically expresses the story of the place he grew up and loves so much. “I started my journey on Rainier Ave,” he laughs. “I ran up and down Rainier Avenue all day every day.”

The Emerald’s commitment to telling the true story of the rich, beautiful life in South Seattle – rather than focusing on the negative – resonates with Charles, who made a similar commitment in his own life, turning away from a destructive youth in order to positively contribute to his hometown.

As Charles says: “I was one of the individuals that helped tear down this neighborhood, tear down my community, and it’s my duty and my calling to be one of the ones that help build it back up.”

Charles speaks with a youth at Rainier Beach Community Center. Photo by Naomi Ishisaka

And build it up he has! Charles is a co-founder of TOKEN (Teaching Our Kids to Educate the Next) which mentors youth and trains them up as leaders. Cortez is also a Rec Attendant at Rainier Beach Community Center, a street outreach worker for the YMCA’s Alive and Free Program and is part of the Boys and Girls Club Safe Passage team.

Will you join Cortez Charles in supporting hyper-local, community-built journalism? We need your support to do this work!


And please helps us spread the word!
Share your own #EmeraldLove  on Facebook and Twitter


Featured image: Original photo by Naomi Ishisaka, adapted for this campaign