The Seattle City Council unanimously confirmed acting director Rico Quirindongo as head of the Office of Planning and Community Development (Via KUOW).
Watch the live stream of Rico’s appointment (via The Seattle Channel), starting at 39:19. You can read the transcription of his acceptance speech below. Congrats Rico!
Thank you to Mayor Bruce Harrell for his leadership and vision, to Councilmembers for the honor of being able to work with you these last two years, to my staff for your tireless passion and energy in the work that we do in the Office of Planning and Community Development.
We have work to do to make the City of Seattle more equitable. Through our Comprehensive Plan, Our One Seattle Plan work, we need to ensure everyone has a voice, regardless of where they live in the city, regardless of what the level of income that they make, regardless of the color of their skin or the nature of their heritage. We need to ensure that anyone that works in the city of Seattle can earn a living wage. We need to ensure that for anyone that choses to or wants to live in the city of Seattle, that they have access to an affordable place to live, whether they are renting or buying, and regardless of their level of income. We need to right the wrongs of our past, including the terrible history of redlining, racial covenants and other racist land-use policies that were built into the regulatory framework for who was allowed to acquire property and own a home in our city. We must support our Tribal partners and our urban indigenous organizations to ensure that the First People of our city are able to be seen and be celebrated, and are able to live in comfort and pride, with the rich cultural traditions that are so grounded in the care of family, community, and place. We must create opportunities for our BIPOC families and business owners across the city to build generational wealth.
Through our programs at the Office of Planning and Community Development — One Seattle Plan, Industrial Maritime Strategy, Equitable Development Initiative, station area planning and downtown subarea plan work, through our collaborations with our fellow City offices and departments, and through our partnerships with community and leadership of the Mayor’s office — we are invested in all of these visions and intended outcomes for all Seattle residents.
Leading with Equity, we are making certain that whatever policy work and community investments that we make as a department and as a City, that we do them in such a way that we are raising all boats, improving the places that people live work, and play, and that we are giving voice and power to those that have been traditionally unseen and under-supported.