Every year, dedicated community members who make up APACE’s Political Action Committee (PAC) meet and examine races around the state to decide where our impact and endorsement will best support our community. The PAC reaches out to candidates in the races we prioritize in two rounds of endorsements — one before the primary election and another before the general election — and asks candidates to complete a questionnaire. Based on the questionnaire, candidates are invited to interview with the PAC.

After interviews, the PAC makes recommendations to the APACE C4 board about which candidates to endorse. The APACE C4 board votes on those recommendations and makes the official decision about endorsements. If you would like to be considered for our endorsement you can contact us at info@apace-wa.org.

2021 Candidate Endorsements

Jane Aras for Bellevue School Board, pos. 5

Jane brings her experience as a teacher and parent to her second campaign for Bellevue School Board, following her strong run in 2019. Her deep commitment to equity is informed by her identity as an immigrant and adoptee in a majority white community.

Leandra Craft for Federal Way City Council, pos. 5

Leandra was selected to fill a vacancy on the council in October 2020, and this is her campaign to retain that seat. She brings her experience as a deputy prosecuting attorney working on the lauded LEAD program to her work with her colleagues on the council and to her view of how public safety could be transformed in Federal Way. She is the first Asian woman to serve on the council.

Toshiko Hasegawa for Seattle Port Commission, pos. 4

Toshiko showed in her interview that she will build on her leadership within Washington’s AAPI community and bring a community focus to the port. 

Frank Irigon for Newcastle City Council, pos. 6

Frank will bring his long legacy of leadership and activism in the AAPI community to the Newcastle City Council, where he would be the only BIPOC person on the council and in city government.

Hamdi Mohamed for Seattle Port Commission, pos. 3

Hamdi served as deputy district director for Representative Pramila Jayapal and currently works as a policy advisor in the King County Executive Office of Equity and Social Justice. She is an immigrant, a SeaTac resident (and as such will be the only commissioner who lives in south Seattle), and the daughter of a former SeaTac airport worker — all perspectives she will bring to her role. 

Joe Nguyen for King County Executive

Joe is running to represent areas and communities within King County that haven’t been adequately represented, and he has been a rising star in the State Senate.

Renae Seam for Federal Way City Council, pos. 6

Renae represents a new generation of leaders in Federal Way. She works in finance and has served in organizations advocating for equity in education and youth development. She is running against incumbent Martin Moore, a former Democrat who switched to the Republican Party. He opposed Jamilah Taylor in last year’s race for State House.

Joyce Shui for Bellevue School Board, pos. 3

Joyce has racked up an impressive list of endorsements in her run for school board, and she will advocate for the Bellevue School District to become an anti-racist organization.

Kim-Khanh Van for King County Council, pos. 9

Kim is a Renton City Councilmember who has a proven track record in government and will bring a strong community perspective to the King County Council. In a competitive field of candidates challenging incumbent Reagan Dunn, Kim-Khanh’s leadership and work in the AAPI community led to the PAC’s endorsement recommendation.

Dexter Borbe for Bellevue City Council pos. 2

Dexter brings his lived experiences to his campaign. He was inspired to run out of a desire to ensure Bellevue is a welcoming place to raise a family, while acting as a regional partner in addressing the affordable housing and homelessness crisis. He is a quick study of municipal policy, such as zoning and land use, and he would be a welcome addition to pass progressive policy in Bellevue.

Lorena Gonzalez for Seattle Mayor

Lorena has a strong track record as a progressive champion on the Seattle City Council. She has a history of working with the AAPI and other BIPOC communities that will inform her community-centric approach to governing the city.

Iris Guzman for SeaTac City Council pos. 6

Iris uses her experience as a social worker to advocate for BIPOC, immigrant, and refugee members of her community. WIth the endorsement of labor unions, current City Councilmembers Gobena and Negusse, and progressive organizations, the PAC believes she will be a strong voice for working families in SeaTac.

Nikkita Oliver for Seattle City Council pos. 9

Nikkita articulated how they will use their skills as an organizer to work with allies, organize fellow councilmembers and pass progressive policy. They especially impressed us with their knowledge of the dynamics in the Chinatown-International District and the fight against displacement, an issue important to Seattle’s AAPI community.

Shukri Olow for King County Council pos. 5

Shukri is an immigrant from Somalia and program lead for the county’s Best Starts for Kids program who has a PhD from Seattle U in education. She also serves on the boards of One America Votes, Kent Youth & Family Services and the Kent YMCA and seeks to bring an authentic community voice to the position.

Sarah Perry for King County Council pos. 3

Sarah supports affordable housing, public transit and small businesses. She has pledged to create a District 3 Community Coalition, a platform for immigrant and refugee communities, in order to create a voice for those communities. The PAC believes Sarah will be an ally to AAPI communities and plans to educate her and hold her accountable.

Jake Simpson for SeaTac City Council pos. 3

Jake is a union organizer with a track record of advocating for policies that will improve the lives of working class families. Jake acknowledges that while he doesn’t share the challenges of communities of color as a white man, he is committed to working with the BIPOC communities he seeks to represent and bring their lived experiences into governing.

Previously endorsed candidates on the ballot this year:

  • Rod Dembowski for King County Council, pos. 1
  • Teresa Mosqueda for Seattle City Council 8
  • Satwinder Kaur for Kent City Council, pos. 1
  • Jimmy Matta for Burien City Council, pos. 3