On Monday, February 29, 2016 from 1:00 p.m. – 2:30 p.m. at Pleasant Valley Plaza in Magnolia, the Seattle Housing Authority (SHA) will host a party for one of its oldest residents, Hazel Bauer, who is celebrating her 100th birthday. Pleasant Valley Plaza, located at 3801 34th Avenue W in Seattle, is part of SHA’s Senior Housing Program. On hand for the celebration will be other residents, SHA staff and Hazel’s family. Mayor Ed Murray has been invited to attend.
Hazel, who has lived at Pleasant Valley Plaza since it was built 32 years ago, exemplifies the benefit of providing long-term, stable housing for low-income seniors in Seattle. She is one of approximately 6,200 seniors SHA serves with housing and other services.
As a self-proclaimed people person, Hazel says she adores her apartment by the front window, where she can watch all the people coming and going. She has made it her goal to find one thing that she likes about every one of her neighbors which, she admits mirthfully, isn’t always easy. At 100 years old, Hazel is still dedicated to her commitment to remember that every day is a new day that has never been lived before and that she should “Give it all I’ve got.” During her time at Pleasant Valley, Hazel has served as the Resident Council President, social director and building matriarch. How much she is appreciated is evidenced by the mounting cards coming in from all over the country and an apartment filled with birthday flowers.
The oldest of seven children, Hazel was born in her grandmother’s house in Western Kansas in 1916. Her parents owned a ranch and raised horses and grain. When asked who has made the biggest impact on her life, Hazel says it was her parents and Eleanor Roosevelt, who gave her new-found confidence because “She was not really a beauty queen and she spoke to heads of state and did magnificent things.” Hazel remembers first hearing her favorite Eleanor Roosevelt quote: “No one can make you inferior without your consent.” Hazel said then and there she decided to get over her inferiority complex and help others. Hazel wants everyone she meets to know that they are unique and have something wonderful to bring to the table.
About the 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 30,000 people in the City of Seattle. SHA owns and operates approximately 8,000 units at nearly 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 13,000 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.