International Examiner
Renton City Councilmember, immigration attorney Kim-Khanh Van running for King County Council

She decided to run against 15-year incumbent King County Councilmember Reagan Dunn (a Republican) for the seat because she believed he has become increasingly disconnected from the needs of the diverse district, and his responses to homelessness and housing affordability have been inadequate.   The district’s challenges were starkly outlined by the COVID-19 pandemic, Van said, and Dunn didn’t do enough to protect communities against hate and bias at the start of the pandemic, or address racial profiling of Black and Latinx community members, especially after the murder of George Floyd in May 2020, and subsequent reckonings with racial injustice.  Read More

Press Release
MLK DAY: Kim-Khanh Van Calls for Representation and Action; Protests Against Racism and Injustice

Van has raised over $75,000 and earned key endorsements, just one month after announcing campaign for County Council 

 

Renton – Today, as communities across America recognize Martin Luther King Jr. Day in a time of historic division, Kim-Khanh Van, a Renton City Councilmember, community organizer, attorney, and mother of two running for King County Council released the following statement:

“On this important holiday, celebrated in honor of the namesake of our county and our nation’s defining voice for equality and justice, we have an important opportunity to reflect on our values in this challenging moment and define the critical and urgent priorities of the future.

“In light of the attack on our Capitol and efforts to discount and overturn the votes of millions of Black and minority voters, we know that what we say – and when we say it – matters. Elected leaders owe it to our communities not to just speak out in times of crisis when the pot boils over, but to reject racism and inequality in all forms from the start by being bold, consistent critics of injustice.

“Commitment to action and representation must be steadfast, these principles cannot be an afterthought, nor a secondary responsibility. We deserve representatives who understand the need to truly invest in equity – in our COVID response and vaccine distribution, support for our veterans and seniors, in helping small and minority owned businesses. Today, I will join in protest with my community in collective demand for a better tomorrow.”

Van, a member of Seattle Martin Luther King Jr. Organizing Coalition, will spend the day in her role as peacekeeper, protesting racism and injustice and joining fellow community members and elected leaders at the 39th Annual Seattle MLK Day Rally and March protest at Garfield High School in Seattle. This year’s theme “Good Trouble, Necessary Trouble” reflects on the legacy of the late Congressman John Lewis, including his and Dr. King Jr.’s fight for justice and efforts to create a beloved community.

If elected, Van would be the first woman of color to serve on the County Council since Ruby Chow retired from county government in the mid-1980’s, and the first to serve since the 1992 establishment of the current Metropolitical King County Council.

Officially announcing her campaign in December, Van has over $75,000 in contributions and pledges as she seeks to unseat Republican County Councilmember Reagan Dunn. Van’s impressive fundraising numbers, including outraising Dunn during this period and having a higher cash on hand, demonstrate the enthusiasm surrounding her campaign.

Van is endorsed by numerous community leaders and advocates for racial justice, including civil rights champion and former longtime King County Councilmember Larry Gossett, Indigenous community leader Matt Remle, Reverend Dr. Linda Smith of the Renton-King County Alliance for Justice, and Vasudha Sharma, a member of the Mayor’s Inclusion Task Force in Renton. 

“Kim-Khanh Van is a natural leader. As a Renton City Councilmember she has helped community members fashion solutions to a wide range of issues including housing, schools, employment, social services and immigrant and refugee advocacy,” said Gossett. “Her quick grasp of neighborhood needs and her ability to bring people together has been a superb gift. She will be a great advocate for every King County neighbor.”

Since entering the race, Van has earned additional endorsements from State Treasurer Mike Pellicciotti, State Senator Karen Keiser, and State Representatives Debra Entenman and Nicole Macri.

See Van’s full list of endorsers and learn more at ElectKimKhanhVan.com.

South Seattle Emerald
Kim-Khánh Văn Aims for King County Council

As Văn campaigns for a seat on the county council, she summarizes her priority as making sure that, as we recover from COVID-19, the American dream is still possible and accessible by everyone. She aims to take a holistic approach to public safety by strengthening police accountability; protecting our water, land, and environment; alleviating small businesses’ economic impacts; and solving homelessness and transportation issues — and the intersection of inclusion and equity in all those sectors. … Read More

Seattle Times
Renton City Councilmember Kim-Khanh Van announces run for King County Council

“I’ll bring fresh ideas and hands-on leadership to address the economic, health and housing challenges facing our families and small businesses as we recover from the pandemic and build stronger communities for all who call this region home,” Van said. “For me, public service is simply an extension of my commitment to helping people, just as my family received care and support when we arrived in Washington state.” … Read More

Patch
Renton Council Member Launches Campaign For King County Council

Văn, born in Vietnam, would be the first Asian-Pacific Islander to serve on the county council and the first woman of color to serve since the modern Metropolitan King County Council was established in 1992. Early endorsements include former county councilmember Larry Gossett and Seattle Port Commissioner Sam Cho.
Read More

Kent Reporter
Renton City Councilmember Van running for Dunn’s county seat

If Van were to be elected, there would be a woman of color on the county council for the first time since the mid-80s. Van also received support...from former King County Councilmember Larry Gossett, Seattle Port Commissioner Sam Cho and State Rep. Steve Bergquist, D-Renton. … Read More

My Northwest
City of Renton gives away thousands of masks to community members

Renton City Council members like Kim-Khanh Van have heard from constituents that it can be hard to obtain masks, as they are such a hot commodity. “With the mask mandate, some of our community members can’t just afford to buy masks,” said Van, who was helping to hand out masks on Wednesday. “And if you are able to afford it, as you can see from other online sources, it’s scarcity at this point … so there’s a huge need in our community.” … Read More

Renton Reporter
Renton suspends water shutoffs, waives utility late fee payments

Councilmember Kim-Khanh Van asked administrators what the city could do for small businesses both right now and for recovery once the coronavirus shutdown is through. During the council meeting Van proposed a small business stabilization fund of $200,000.... Van also addressed the backlash Asian communities around Renton have received from racism and misconceptions related to novel coronavirus, both at the committee meeting and the regular council meeting, reminding that Renton is an inclusive city that doesn’t tolerate discrimination. … Read More

Renton Reporter
Councilmember Văn proposes eviction moratorium

At the meeting, Councilmember Kim-Khánh Van proposed that the city place a moratorium on evictions for renters and provide additional funds for small businesses. Van said she wanted to explore this more for the 42.8 percent of Renton residents that are renters, residents of color and vulnerable people being hurt by the outbreak. … Read More

The Seattle Times
The Times recommends: Kim-Khanh Van, Renton City Council, Position 7

[Van] has a strong vision for Renton’s future, with plans to work with law enforcement and housing agencies to develop inclusion and economic opportunity. Van’s civic résumé includes volunteer work and leadership roles with several organizations focused on helping immigrants. Her work as an attorney also has prepared her to shape public policy. … Read More