Category Archives: Column

An ACE in the Hole for South Shore School’s Young Men of Color

by Melia LaCour

Motivational speaker Les Brown once advised, to achieve your dreams “shoot for the moon because if you miss, you will land among the stars.” On August 3, 17 South Shore School students -all young men of color- launched their journey towards the moon by graduating from the Academy for Creating Excellence Summer Learning Program (ACE SLP).  Continue reading An ACE in the Hole for South Shore School’s Young Men of Color

How the Port of Seattle is Working Around I-200

by Hanna Brooks Olsen

Diversity remains a challenge for the Port—but the Commission wants you to know they haven’t given up

For nearly 20 years, Washington’s government agencies have been legally limited in their ability to actively pursue contracts and partnerships with small businesses based on the race, gender, or religion of their owners. Submitted by Tim Eyman and passed by the voters of the state in 1998, I-200—billed as a method of leveling the playing field by criminalizing affirmative action—has been an oppressive force that further undermines the state’s glaring equity gaps. Continue reading How the Port of Seattle is Working Around I-200

Why the Port of Seattle Can’t Get Contracting Right

by Hanna Brooks Olsen

I-200, which passed 19 years ago, has made it nearly impossible to correct decades of discriminatory contracting processed—but that’s not the only reason

In late 2007, an audit of the Port of Seattle found numerous glaring issues, including the squandering of close to $100M. The report, which ultimately lead to the departure of two high-ranking officials and a criminal investigation, also found something else: Port leadership, it alleged, may have been exploiting loopholes in the rules around contracting to steer lucrative deals away from small businesses who had taken part in the bidding process and instead toward preferred providers. Continue reading Why the Port of Seattle Can’t Get Contracting Right

Community Honors Tommy Le, Demands Justice

by Sharon H. Chang

In the tradition of Mahayana Buddhism practiced by the Vietnamese, Hoai Le and Dieu Ho are wearing white dress shirts–white being symbolic of death. Over her heart, mother Dieu Ho also wears a small piece of black material showing she is in mourning.

The two parents will grieve for 49 days when they will go to temple every weekend. This is the time it will take for their son, Tommy Le, to be reborn again into a new life. Continue reading Community Honors Tommy Le, Demands Justice

Locally Grown: A Rainier Beach Power Couple

By Kris Kendall

Spend a few minutes talking with Rainier Beach residents Yvette Dinish Kenney and Tyrone Kenney and it’s nearly impossible not to feel inspired.

She’s a Seattle native, retired after a career as a network engineer for the City of Seattle. He’s a transplant from Georgia who worked as a radio disc jockey, now hoping to re-start the cleaning business he put on hold after a near-fatal car accident. Both spend much of their free time volunteering here in the neighborhood. I’m pretty convinced they have super powers. Continue reading Locally Grown: A Rainier Beach Power Couple