Two experienced Tukwila City Council members running for mayor | CAMPAIGN 2015

De'Sean Quinn, a water-quality planner and project manager for the King County Wastewater Treatment Division, says his top three issues are improved public safety, protecting the character of neighborhoods and improving education. Allan Ekberg, a senior information technology project manager for BECU, says his top three issues are speeding and safe streets, code enforcement and quality of life. The Tukwila Reporter will have additional coverage throughout the week.

(CORRECTION: De’Sean Quinn has served on the Tukwila City Council for seven years, not six years as originally reported.)

Two Tukwila City Council members who played key roles in guiding Tukwila’s development and shaping its quality of life are now running for mayor.

Either Allan Ekberg or De’Sean Quinn will replace Jim Haggerton, who is not seeking a third term as mayor.

Ballots for the Nov. 3 general election are arriving in mailboxes in Tukwila.

Both candidates have chaired key council committees and served as council president, Quinn in 2014 and Ekberg in 1992 and 1995, when the council last updated the City’s Comprehensive Plan, and again in 2011.

Quinn, 43, has served on the council for seven years. Ekberg, 56, has served on the council for 15 years, serving two terms starting in 1990. He took a decade off to help raise his family and was elected to the council again in 2009.

Ekberg and Quinn were both re-elected in 2013, so one of them will remain on the council to complete that term. Their new terms began in 2014.

Quinn, a water-quality planner and project manager for the King County Wastewater Treatment Division, says his top three issues are improved public safety, protecting the character of neighborhoods and improving education.

Ekberg, a senior information technology project manager for BECU, says his top three issues are speeding and safe streets, code enforcement and quality of life.

Ekberg says his campaign is largely self-funded; he’s not accepting contributions from businesses, unions or outside organizations.

As of Oct. 15, the last report available online before the Tukwila Reporter print deadline, Ekberg had reported $24,367 in contributions and $23,171 in expenditures.

His largest financial contributors are his campaign treasurer, Dennis Robertson, a fellow City Council member, who has donated $500, and Louise Strander, a Tukwila community leader, who has donated $250.

Ekberg has loaned his campaign $10,500 in personal funds.

As of Oct. 15, Quinn has reported $28,191 in contributions and $24,917 in expenditures

Quinn has received substantial support from labor unions and businesses, including the Great Wall Investment Group Ltd., which contributed $950 to his campaign.

The principals in the investment group are Omar and Christine Lee, who are building the 19-story Washington Place in Southcenter.

Quinn’s largest contributions from Tukwila residents are $350 each from Ron and Nancy Lamb.

Both candidates use similar terms in describing themselves as mayor – visionary, hands-on, engaged.

“I am a strategic and tactical thinker,” said Ekberg. “So I will come in with the vision and let them (staff) run with it. If it’s not working well, then I will throw in some tactical approaches.”

And Quinn uses the adjective “accountable.”

“I will hold myself to a very high standard, because I witnessed what leadership looked like,” Quinn said, while working for leaders in county government. “And I would make sure that my standard that I hold for myself is also a high standard that we would want for staff. Because we are there for the public.”

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