Larry Gossett is running for his seventh term on the King County Council. Rumor was that Gossett planned to retire this year after his long tenure on the council. But, according to a letter to constituents ~obtained by The Stranger~, Gossett says he wants to "continue being your servant leader on the Martin Luther King County Council," representing the community where he was born and raised.
So far Gossett's competition includes Girmay Zahilay, an attorney with Perkins Coie. According to a press release, Zahilay lives in Rainier Valley and runs a nonprofit called Rising Leaders Inc., which "empowers underserved middle school students by expanding their professional networks." The Seattle Times has a full profile on him.
While I was not at all impressed with Gossett's opinion on taking over 4Culture for no reason, his ideas about arts administration do not comprise the total expression of his being. He grew up as an activist and organizer in the community, and he's long spearheaded criminal justice and civil rights issues. He was the second African American elected chair of the council, and he was also the guy who pushed for the county to use the likeness of Dr. Martin Luther King as the its logo, according to the Seattle Times.
The Times also notes that Gossett won his last race with 98 percent of the vote.
“All of us in Seattle stand on the shoulders of giants like CM Gossett and are truly thankful for his over 25 years of service on the Council," says a representative from Zahilay's camp. "We also believe it’s time to pass the baton to the next generation of leadership in King County. We look forward to engaging on the issues and discussing the future of King County.”
This is a developing story. I'll update with more later.