Tag Archives: Elizabeth Turnbull

Dr. Lauri Conner: Investing in Students and Teaching Them the World

by Elizabeth Turnbull


Pouring pen ink into words, Dr. Lauri Conner’s 12-year-old self began the process of writing out her feelings and expressing her way into a new future — as a poet, an educator earning a doctorate degree, and now, the new head of school at Lake Washington Girls Middle School (LWGMS).

“I started writing because it was the way I could express myself. It was a way I could get all those things that were bottled up inside out,” Conner told the Emerald in an interview. “So it just became the way.”

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Virtual Town Hall Highlights Legal Efforts to Further Protect Survivors of Domestic Violence

by Elizabeth Turnbull


Following a rise in domestic violence rates during the course of the pandemic, Sen. Manka Dhingra and others spoke at a town hall Wednesday, Nov. 3, highlighting new state legislation which is making it easier for survivors to seek protections from their abusers.

“We wanted to make sure that we were addressing long-standing issues that were highlighted by the pandemic,” Dingra said. “… We have a continued responsibility to help survivors reclaim their lives and move forward in a positive way.”

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Skyway Community Members Offered Stipend to Participate in Building Local Food Economy

by Elizabeth Turnbull


Community members are encouraged to join and provide input at “Local Foods, Local Places Virtual Workshop” sessions which will be held Monday through Thursday of next week. Organized by the Urban Food Systems Pact – Skyway (UFSPS), the events will help develop a community action plan to grow the local food economy and to improve access to healthy foods.

The sessions will explore possible food-related projects such as developing an affordable neighborhood farmer’s market, a food hub with a commercial kitchen for entrepreneurs, or a gardening program led by BIPOC elders. 

The purpose of the workshop is to form a short-term action plan for improving access to local foods to be implemented through the next two to five years.

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Old U.S. Bank Building in Skyway Set to Become HUD EnVision Center

by Elizabeth Turnbull


A new HUD EnVision Center is set to open in the old U.S. Bank building in Skyway in 2023 — providing connections to economic, health, and other resources — after U.S. Bank donated the land and the building to the King County Housing Authority (KCHA).

The space, which will be known as the Skyway Resource Center and is located at 12610 76th Ave. S., will replace and expand on the existing mobile resource center the Renton Innovation Zone Partnership (RIZP) launched roughly a year ago to provide resources during the pandemic. 

“For too long, Skyway has not received sufficient public and private investment, and that has slowed the development of economic opportunities and the provision of needed community services,” Stephen Norman, KCHA’s executive director, wrote in a statement released by U.S. Bank. “We are excited to work with the Skyway community and King County to reverse this trend and assist in the development of a new community asset that will provide additional tools and resources to help residents to move ahead.”

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Center Offers Culturally Appropriate Support for Muslim Women Facing Violence

by Elizabeth Turnbull


The Muslimah’s Against Abuse Center (MAAC) opened in South Seattle in 2020 to help women who face gender-based violence. Organizers created the nonprofit specifically to help fellow Muslim Women of Color and to provide healing circles, support groups, and other resources to support women in various ways.

“There is so much stigma around abuse within East African communities,” said Rahma Rashid, the founder of MAAC. “Often, these young women are being shamed by their religious leaders, family, and community members … We are providing a resource that doesn’t exist within our communities and that no one on the outside is providing.” 

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Black-Owned rōJō Juice Pours Out Organic Juices and Love

by Elizabeth Turnbull


At the entrance of Pike Place Market, next to Ellenos Greek Yogurt and across from where the fish are thrown, one woman and her family pour organic fruits, vegetables, and joy into the lives of Seattleites and tourists who visit the Black-owned business rōJō Juice

“Customers say that the music that we play, the energy that we give literally like … gets them out of bed,” Rhonda Faison, the owner of rōJō Juice, told the Emerald. “… and whether they buy a juice or not they just love to be around rōJō and the energy.” 

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The Royal Room Announces Grand Reopening September 15

by Elizabeth Turnbull


After 18 months of closure, the South Hudson Music Project announced the reopening of the live music venue, The Royal Room, this Wednesday, Sept. 15. The reopening signals a reawakening of musical and artistic life in the South Seattle Area.

The Royal Room’s first event “Piano Starts Here” will showcase the work of great pianists, including Duke Ellington, Carla Bley, Cole Porter, Earl Hines, and others, all played by local Seattle-based pianists and improvisers. Local composer and performer Alex Guilbert is the host of the series. Tickets must be purchased prior to the event as they will not be sold in-person.

Events will continue through the weekend. On Thursday, Sept. 16, local jazz vocalist Elnah Jordan will perform. Jordan is an accomplished singer with a singing repertoire including gospel, jazz, blues, and R&B. 

On Friday, Sept. 17, people who want to welcome back live music on the dance floor will get not one but two opportunities to attend “The Royal Room Grand Reopening Dance Party.” Tickets will be available for both an early show at 6:30 p.m. or the late show at 9:30 p.m. Local musicians will be covering classic artists such as Aretha Franklin, Al Green, Marvin Gaye, Lake Street Dive, Amy Winehouse, and The Staple Singers. 

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Love Train Community Block Party Provides a Wealth of Community and Care

by Elizabeth Turnbull


On Sept. 11, families and community members young and old are invited to the Angel of Hope Engagement Center on 75th Avenue South where they can pick up free back-to-school supplies, play games, eat food, get COVID-19 vaccinations and flu shots, and even join in a dance with former Seahawks wide receiver Doug Baldwin.

The event, which will take place from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m., promises to be a joyful and loud community moment, and Tony Benton of Rainier Avenue Radio will be there to capture it all on livestream.

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New Mural Brightens Pho Van Restaurant Building in Rainier Beach

by Elizabeth Turnbull


Earlier this month, volunteers and community members painted on saturated oranges, blues, and pinks to warm the abandoned Pho Van Restaurant building on Rainier Avenue South and to bring some light to the Rainier Beach area through art.

The idea for the mural was spearheaded by the Rainier Beach: A Beautiful Safe Place for Youth initiative (RB:ABSPY) which partners with the Seattle Youth Violence Prevention Initiative, the Seattle Police Department, the Rainier Beach Action Coalition, and others to reduce neighborhood violence in Rainier Beach.

Instead of fighting crime with arrests, the initiative identifies certain physical spaces, such as the Pho Van Restaurant building, where crime happens and then works to change the physical environment, increase supervision, or change policies, rules, and/or other approaches.

“Our objective was to transform [the Pho Van building] space into a positive space to uplift and beautify our community,” Cathie Wilmore, the project manager of RB:ABSPY, said in a statement. “Community murals have the opportunity to tell a community’s story, create a unique experience, engage the community, and increase appreciation for the arts and artists.”

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Program Expands in South King County to Offer Rides to Transit Centers and More

by Elizabeth Turnbull


Beginning Aug. 10, more residents in South King County will be able to get rides to transportation hubs for buses, trains, and other locations after King County Metro expanded a pilot service program to provide for Rainier Beach, Skyway, Renton Highlands, and Tukwila.

Similar to the way Uber and Lyft operate, residents living in Othello, Rainier Beach, Skyway, Renton Highlands, and Tukwila will now be able to request a ride from a vehicle in King County’s pilot program, called Via to Transit, in order to commute to the light rail, bus networks, and other locations that are designated by the program.

“The expansion of this service is the result of outreach by Metro to understand what we could do to meet the mobility needs of the people in these communities,” said Christina O’Claire, Metro’s mobility division director in a statement. “Our focus is to ensure that our riders are able to access work, school, the services they depend on, and the activities they enjoy.”

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