On February 23 the Seattle City Council confirmed Seattle Mayor Ed Murray’s appointments of Zachary Pullin and Jermaine Smiley to the Seattle Housing Authority (SHA) Board of Commissioners.
The seven-member SHA Board of Commissioners includes five at-large positions and two resident positions. The commissioners are appointed to four-year terms by the mayor and confirmed by the City Council.
The board has oversight on SHA policies and approves the agency’s annual budget. Commissioners are also responsible for hiring the executive director, a position currently held by Andrew J. Lofton.
“We are pleased to welcome Zach and Jermaine to our board,” Lofton said. “Each of them has a personal and professional background that adds to the diverse perspectives and representation on our board. I look forward to working with our two new commissioners.”
Pullin and Smiley both have personal experience living in public housing growing up. Pullin now works in communications for Service Employees International Union (SEIU), a large healthcare union in North America. A member of the Chippewa Cree tribe, he was born on a Native American Indian reservation in Montana and lived in public housing in Spokane while his mother attended law school. He is vice president of the Capitol Hill Community Council, where he supports housing affordability. Smiley is an organizer at Laborers’ Local 242 and executive director of a nonprofit organization committed to developing affordable workforce housing.
Pullin and Smiley will join current board members Nora Gibson (chair), Doug Morrison (vice-chair), Aser Ashkir, Kollin Min and Deborah Canavan Thiele.
The appointments replace two outgoing board members, John Littel, whose term expired in October 2014, and Juan Martinez, whose term will expire in March 2015. “I want to thank John and Juan for their service to our community as members of the SHA Board,” said Lofton.
About Seattle Housing Authority
The mission of the Seattle Housing Authority (SHA) is to enhance the Seattle community by creating and sustaining decent, safe and affordable living environments that foster stability and self-sufficiency for people with low incomes. SHA provides long-term, low-income rental housing and rental assistance to more than 29,000 people in the City of Seattle. SHA owns and operates approximately 9,000 units at more than 400 sites throughout the city. SHA also handles more than 10,000 Housing Choice Vouchers (also known as Section 8), enabling low-income residents to receive rental assistance in the private housing market. Approximately 11,000 SHA residents are elderly or disabled and about 9,500 are children. SHA, a public corporation established in 1939, is governed by a seven-member Board of Commissioners, two of whom are SHA residents. Commissioners are appointed by the Mayor and confirmed by the City Council.