EDITOR’S NOTE: This story has been updated with corrected vote totals.

Longtime Kent resident and educator Shukri Olow this week announced her campaign for State Representative in the 47th Legislative District, vying for the seat being vacated by retiring House Majority Leader Pat Sullivan.

The primary will be held Aug. 2, 2022, and the general election will be Nov. 8, 2022.

Olow previously ran against incumbent Dave Upthegrove for King County Council District 5, which she lost by 11,663 votes on Nov. 2, 2021.

She is a mother and a community organizer in South King County. For the last 14 years, she has worked directly in service to the residents of South King County on a variety of issues including housing, education, and human services.

“This is a campaign to lift up the voices of the working people of South King County. Our residents need an elected official who faces the same challenges and struggles they go through. Someone who will listen and then take their concerns to Olympia. I’d be honored to be that voice,” Olow said.

Here’s more from her campaign:

Shukri was 4-years-old when her father died in a tragic car accident and a Civil War broke out in her birth country of Somalia. She fled her home with her mother and siblings, and then spent six years in a refugee camp, praying for an opportunity to find peace and security.

In 1996, at the age of 10, Shukri arrived in the United States, and found a home in South King County, in the city of Kent. Shukri’s family accessed the food bank and had social workers connecting them to additional resources in the community. Their family was surrounded by helpers who laid the path for a brighter future in their new home.

As an immigrant, refugee, and product of the Kent public housing system, Shukri has seen and lived the challenges that so many members of our community face. She has also felt the beauty of this community which supports one another, and supported her when her family needed it most. It is that resilient love that inspires Shukri to represent the people of South King County.

Shukri has received the endorsements of King County Councilmember Girmay Zihilay; State Representative Debra Entenman; State Representative Jamila Taylor; Kent City Councilmember Zandria Michaud; Mike Heinisch, former Executive Director, Kent Youth and Family Services; SeaTac Mayor Jake Simpson, SeaTac City Councilmember Iris Guzman, Burien City Councilmember Cyndey Moore, Burien City Councilmember Sarah Moore; Burien City Councilmember Hugo Garcia; Auburn City Councilmember Kate Baldwin; Covington City Councilmember Jennifer Harjehausen; and many, many others…

Shukri started working with the countywide program Best Start for Kids in 2017 because of her family’s experience and mother of two amazing kids. Her family has had their own personal struggles, and she works every day to ensure that every child in the county, and their families have the resources they need to grow and be successful in an area that is becoming less and less livable and affordable by the minute. Uplifting children and families in our community is exactly the kind of work that she feels must be done in Olympia by increasing access to housing, education, and human services.

Shukri Olow graduated from Auburn High School. She has a B.A. in Public Affairs, a Masters in Public Administration, and a Doctorate in Education from Seattle University. She lives in Kent with her two children.

Scott Schaefer

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