Employee News - February 20, 2019


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Celebrating Black History Month in King County 

King County Executive Dow Constantine has proclaimed February 2019 to be Black History Month in King County. 

“The scientific, technological, economic, political, and cultural innovations by Black Americans and African Americans have been essential to the progress of our nation and we will continue to honor these accomplishments every month and every day in Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., County, Washington State,” Executive Constantine said in his Proclamation. 


King County Executive Constantine names Rachel Smith as Deputy Executive 

Executive Dow Constantine announced that Rachel Smith will serve as Deputy Executive, responsible for directing strategic initiatives, coordinating senior leadership, overseeing intergovernmental work, and managing administration of the Executive’s staff. 

Smith will continue to serve as Chief of Staff. She joined the Executive’s Office in 2014 as Director of Government Relations. Prior to King County, she worked in government relations at Sound Transit, supporting the agency’s delivery of projects and services across King, Pierce, and Snohomish counties. Before that, Smith served as a policy advisor to Seattle Mayor Greg Nickels, and performed advocacy work for Transportation Choices Coalition. 

Employee Spotlights

kelly and husband

DNRP employee Kelly Heintz receives prestigious land conservation award 

Kelly Heintz, a Natural Lands Planner with the King County Department of Natural Resources and Parks, was recently honored at the annual Mountains to Sound Greenway Trust (MTSGT) Celebration Dinner as a long-time partner and advocate for public lands, conservation, and recreation in the region. The MTSGT leads and inspires action to conserve and enhance the landscape from Seattle across the Cascade Mountains to Central Washington, ensuring a long-term balance between people and nature. 

The Jim Ellis Spirit Award recognizes Kelly for her work as a dedicated and effective open space and natural lands planner, both in her current position at King County Parks, and in her previous work at the Washington Department of Natural Resources. Kelly is a program/project manager in the Natural Lands and Open Space Section of the Parks Division. She secures grants and other funding to acquire high conservation value natural lands. She engages the community around stewardship, public access, and use of those lands. Read more.

Pictured: Kelly Heintz with her husband Andrew and the Jim Ellis Spirit Award.


KCIT’s Aaron Barak featured in magazine emphasizing cybersecurity 

Security is the heart of all that King County Information Technology (KCIT) does. Aaron Barak, Chief Technology Officer for the department, recently discussed cybersecurity issues for local governments in GovCIO Outlook magazine, including the constant stream of threats from foreign bad actors attempting to gain privileged information or a backdoor into critical services. Read more here.



We want to hear from you: Share your feedback about service in the winter storm 

A message from Rob Gannon, General Manager of King County Metro 

For the first time ever, King County Metro enacted its Emergency Snow Network for four days – from Saturday, Feb. 9, through Tuesday, Feb. 12 – when one of the worst snowstorms in decades hit the region.  

It was a challenging period for all of us, and I want to thank our riders for their patience, kind words and helpful feedback. We know it was cold, inconvenient and stressful, but we were inspired by the way you supported our bus drivers and each other. Read more.


Enhancements coming to 2019 employee survey, opens March 11 

Since 2015, the annual Employee Engagement Survey has been used to hear from employees about how to make King County a better place to work, and how to provide services more effectively to residents. The learnings form the basis of Investing in YOU, a strategy to build a workplace where employees have the tools, support, and opportunity to do their best work.   

Four years into this journey, it’s time to reflect, learn and look at where improvements can be made. 2019 will bring some exciting changes and a relationship with a new vendor, Confirmit. Read more.

Recent episode of King County @ Your Service show covers wide range of topics 

Join host Kimberly Hill for the most recent episode of King County @ Your Service. It covers the Protection Order Advocacy Program from the Prosecuting Attorney’s Office, the King County Archives, the Roads Division and Supported Employment, King County Adoption Services, women in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) from the Water and Land Resources Division, the new Hearing Loop in Council Chambers, and King County's "Mole."



Are you a woman in tech? We want your thoughts! 

The King County Information Technology Equity and Social Justice team will celebrate Women in Technology in March, and are seeking the feedback of women in tech around King County. If that is you, please briefly answer the following questions and email your answers to Elaine Porterfield at EPorterfield@kingcounty.gov by Feb. 25. Please feel free to share this request with other women throughout the county who also work in technology. Thank you in advance for your participation! 

  • What led you to a career in Information technology? 
  • What role could technology play in addressing Equity & Social Justice issues? 
  • What would gender equity look like in technology? 
  • King County leads with racial justice. Reflect on racial-gender equity in technology. 
  • What contributions have you made in addressing Equity & Social Justice in King County?  
  • Tell us about any changes at King County that have happened as a result of our focus on Equity & Social Justice.


Rev Up For Retirement seminar, March 13  

Are you too young to think about retirement? Think again!  This retirement overview is for anyone who thinks they may retire in the next few years. With increasing concern over the future of Social Security and the stability of retirement plans, it’s a good idea to stay informed and prepare in advance.  

Join us for a three-hour seminar. Topics include pensions, Medicare, and the current retirement climate and projections for the future. Plus, we’ll share resources available to you through King County. The seminar will take place Wednesday, March 13 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Weyerhaeuser King County Aquatic Center.  

Registration is required. Click here to register. Please note attendance is strictly voluntary, on your own time, and non-work related. For more information, contact King County Benefits, Payroll and Retirement Operations at KC.Orientations@kingcounty.gov 

Kudos to employees for continued dedication! 

Several people gave kudos online to our hard working employees in roads, healthcare and public safety who are unable to take a snow day. Their service and commitment during the challenging weather kept King County moving and its residents safe. 

Additional thanks to those employees who kept our animal friends safe, ensured pet adoption centers were open, and responded to community calls for help. We appreciate your passion to continue providing humane animal care. 

Kudos to all of our employees for their excellent service and hard work during these difficult weather conditions! See full size photos here.

kudos both

Training Spotlight

Team Building for Success, March 1: Want to showcase your strengths and make a positive impact in your organization? Your ability to participate, collaborate and resolve issues will set you apart as a “go-to” person in any organization. In this interactive course, learn skills to develop group understanding, evaluate team roles, develop methods for resolving underlying conflict within a team, and use these skills to collaborate with team members to achieve workplace objectives. Register and learn more.

Grammar Refresher, April 10: Confused about grammar and punctuation? This fun, hands-on class will help you master the latest rules, avoid common errors, and write with confidence. We'll cover apostrophes, verb tense, word usage, subject/verb agreement, commas/semicolons, style guides, how to avoid the 10 most common grammar and punctuation mistakes, and more. Class includes plenty of examples and exercises to help you practice your new skills.Register and learn more.


Pet of the Week: Keyla 

Lots of melting snow in our region – so how about a dog that will melt your heart? 

Our Pet of the Week Keyla is an eight-year-old pittie. Her personality color is “Easy Going Green,” meaning she’s an adaptable dog who loves to go with the flow! Keyla is an absolute sweetheart who just adores people. Despite her size, she still thinks of herself as a lap dog and will gladly curl up in your lap to take a nap if you let her. She is also good on leash and enjoys taking leisurely strolls with her people. Read more.

Featured Job: Juvenile Detention Officer 

Salary: $55,764.80 - $70,616.00 Annually 

Location: Seattle, WA 

Job Type: Career Service, Full Time, 40 hrs/week 

Department: DAJD - Adult & Juvenile Detention 

Job Number: 2019AH09195 

Closing: 6/30/2019 11:59 PM Pacific 

Juvenile Detention Officers (JDOs) work in a secure juvenile detention facility with male and female detainees under 18 years of age. JDOs interact directly with juveniles with the focus on managing behavior by the least restrictive means, utilizing coaching and conflict resolution skills to teach and promote pro-social behavior among the juveniles. JDOs are responsible for creating and maintaining a safe, secure environment for juveniles and ensuring that their care and programming needs are met.

The Juvenile Division of the Department of Adult and Juvenile Detention (DAJD) is responsible for the care and custody of youth who are detained in the Juvenile Detention Facility and also operates King County's Alternatives to Secure Detention (ASD) programs. The Juvenile Division is committed to a philosophy of balanced and restorative justice, moving from a system that criminalizes vulnerable youth to one that supports them in leading safe, productive lives. Joining DAJD's Juvenile Detention provides the unique opportunity to join a department during the height of systemic transformation. The Juvenile Division incorporates the principles of restorative justice by promoting communication skills, empathy and other opportunities for personal growth. Youth also learn team building skills and are exposed to new ideas, career opportunities, and self-awareness through various program offered within the facility.

Learn more about this position or view all available positions.

KC Headlines

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