Kelley McIntosh of Belfair, has officially announced her campaign for Mason County Commissioner District 1. The following is her message to the community and why she is seeking this position as county commissioner:
I have been planning to run for county commissioner for several years. I believe this is the right time for me personally and professionally. I have always had an interest in public service and have focused my education and experience to better serve our communities. Between my education and my professional career, I feel I am the most qualified candidate to provide solid leadership for our county. I always knew I would come back to my hometown and give back. I’m excited about my campaign and will have a solid team to help me move this campaign to November.
I moved to Shelton at the age of 13 and lived in Lilliwaup until finishing high school. I returned to Mason County after college and have lived in Belfair for 25 years. My two daughters grew up in Belfair and still live locally. My wonderful grandson attends kindergarten at Pioneer Elementary.
I graduated from Shelton High School in 1985. I attended Washington State University for 3 years and finished the final year at The Evergreen State College earning my Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and minoring in Sociology and Criminal Justice. I have been working for Thurston County for almost 24 years. I knew I wanted to continue my education. My daughters were in early elementary school when I decided to go back to school. I went The Evergreen State College in the evening. After two very diligent years, I received my Masters in Public Administration.
I became a fire commissioner for Mason County Fire District 2 in Belfair and North Mason 15 years ago. In 2014, MCFD 2 and 8 (Tahuya/Dewatto) became North Mason Fire Authority and I continue to serve as a fire commissioner. As a fire commissioner, I have represented the county’s fire districts as a member of the MACECOM 911 board from 2009-2014. I have also served on the board of the Mason County Fire Commissioners Association and am now serving as the president. Additionally, I participated and served as the chair for the Mason County Public Safety Task Force in 2014. This task force consisted of criminal justice professionals in the community appointed by the county commissioners to study and review the needs of the county’s criminal justice system and submit recommendations. Currently, I am a member of the Belfair Allyn Urban Growth Area (UGA) Review Committee. This committee is tasked with reviewing the zoning and regulations in the north end of our county and making recommendations to the board to address UGA and Growth Management Act concerns.
I have been employed with Thurston County Pretrial Services for almost 24 years. This court program serves the courts and criminal justice stakeholders in addressing risk to the community, supervision in the community, needs assessment, coordination with therapeutic courts (Drug/DWI, Mental Health, and Veterans Courts) and other probation divisions, implementing treatment compliance programs and numerous other court protocols. I work in coordination with all criminal justice stakeholders, social and treatment service providers, as well as offenders and their families.
Leadership within the realm of government and public administration should be inclusive, collaborative, and transparent. My goal as your county commissioner is to open up the channels of communication with the other elected officials and department managers to use their knowledge and expertise to improve systems and services to our citizens. I would also work to unite public and private interests to help create a vision and strategy for the county that would serve to not only help create educational, training, and employment opportunities; but would also work to protect the rural nature of our county while utilizing the potential of our people and natural resources. It is important that a leader be able to effectively communicate, even with their detractors, in order to work towards a goal for the common good. It is in this manner that we can achieve our goals, big and small, to make Mason County a safe and prosperous place to live and raise our families.
McIntosh recently introduced herself as a candidate at the April 25, 2016 meeting of the North Mason Community Voice: