Employee News - June 5, 2019


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Solidarity with our Virginia Beach colleagues 

Dear fellow King County employee, 

On Friday, our nation witnessed another mass shooting, this time at a municipal building in Virginia Beach. Most of the people who lost their lives were public employees, dutifully serving the people of their community. 

Public service is important work, and it only compounds the tragedy that these individuals died while working to improve the lives of their fellow Virginia Beach residents. 

Each time a shooting occurs and lives are senselessly cut short, it erodes our sense of safety. Sometimes it is worshipers. Sometimes schoolchildren. This time many of the victims were our colleagues in municipal government. We send our message of sympathy and solidarity to the entire Virginia Beach family. Read more.


Supporting and advancing immigrant rights 

Bookda Gheisar has been the Immigrant and Refugee Policy Advisor for King County in the Office of Equity and Social Justice (OESJ).  This is Bookda’s last week before she transitions to take a new position at the Port of Seattle as their first Senior Director for Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion.  

In this article, Bookda shares some of her reflections and learnings while at the County and provides resources that are available to support King County employees as we all work towards more equitable work places and communities.  

In 2015, the King County Council and King County Executive formed the King County Immigrant and Refugee Task Force. I was hired as a consultant to conduct community engagement and provide recommendations. Over nine months, we held more than 20 community meetings hearing feedback from more than 500 immigrant and refugee community members. This critical work identified barriers in accessing King County services and offered many solutions as identified by community members. The final report can be viewed here. 

I then joined the Equity and Social Justice team to support immigrant community partnership and engagement, developing policies to advance and protect the rights of immigrants.  After three years, I am now moving on to help create the first office of equity for the Port of Seattle. As I leave, I reflect upon some of our joint accomplishments. Read more.

Employee Spotlights


Mark Rowe is the new Deputy Director for King County Local Services Permitting Division 

Recently, King County Local Services Permitting Division welcomed Mark Rowe as its new Deputy Director. 

It’s somewhat of a homecoming for Rowe, who had two prior stints with the county. He first spent six years as a Registered Environmental Health Specialist for Public Health-Seattle & King County before joining AT&T Broadband, where he managed the teams that established high-speed data and voice networks in the state. In 2003, he rejoined Public Health as Program Manager for Emergency Preparedness, then as Food Protection and Water Recreation Facilities Section Manager. Read more.


King County Executive and employees volunteer at Jefferson Day Center 

Recently, Executive Constantine and members of his office staff volunteered at the Jefferson Day Center. 

"We brought and served breakfast and, more importantly, got to spend time with some of our neighbors who we are helping to transition out of homelessness,” he said.” 

Hear more about the experience in this video, posted to Executive Constantine’s Facebook. 

exec volunteer

psb trees

PSB staff set newly planted trees up for success!  

On Friday, May 3, staff  from the Office of Performance, Strategy and Budget (PSB) volunteered at the Cougar-Squak Animal Migration Corridor. This busy hiking area, formerly a private camp ground, was acquired by King County in 2016.  Earlier this year, numerous trees and shrubs were planted to fill in the spaces that had previously been campsites. Our work for the day was to place mulch around the plantings to protect them and increase their chance of survival. 

The team got right to work and exceeded expectations!  In fact, King County Parks staff had to buy more mulch in order to keep everyone busy. We overheard them marveling over the speed at which we worked and wondering what distinguished our group from other volunteers.  

In summary, we worked hard, learned that we are a great team whatever the work we’re doing, and we got to spend a beautiful day in nature working to make our County a better place! 


PeopleSoft weekend outage beginning 3 p.m. Friday, June 7 

To allow for system maintenance, the PeopleSoft system will not be available this weekend beginning 3 p.m. Friday, June 7. During this planned outage, the Business Resource Center (BRC) will apply vendor updates and maintenance. 

This work will begin on Friday, June 7, at 3 p.m. and is scheduled to be completed by 6:30 a.m. on Monday, June 10. The system will not be available for access by any County staff during this outage window. There will be a communication sent out to all County staff when the system becomes available. 

We realize that this outage impacts PeopleSoft users. We appreciate your understanding and support. 

wlrd siff

King County employees featured in film at SIFF 

King County’s Environmental Lab and the Roads Services Division will be featured in a free public screening of the film,  “Engineering with Nature - An Ode to Water, Wood, and Stone” on Saturday, June 8 at 2 p.m. An entry in this year’s Seattle International Film Festival, the film is the story of Seattle Public Utilities’ Thornton Creek Project to reduce flooding and restore Chinook spawning habitat. The Environmental Lab did the analysis and testing to monitor how well the project worked, while the Roads Services Division also worked on the project and are interviewed in the film. 

The screening will be held at the Seattle Central Library, 1000 4th Ave. Seattle, WA. This will be followed by an extended Q&A with director Shelly Solomon, members of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Natural Systems Design, and other project participants. More information is available on the Seattle Public Library website, and seats can be reserved here. Tickets are free, but seating is limited. 


Discounts available to Silverwood Theme Park 

Employees can now purchase discounted tickets to Silverwood Theme Park, for use June 8-23. This is during Silverwood’s County Worker and Small Business Appreciation Days. To access the discount. Visit the website, www.silverwoodthemepark.com, purchase tickets and enter promo code SmallBiz2019For more information, view this flyer. 

See all available discounts at www.kingcounty.gov/employeediscounts. 


Rev Up For Retirement offered downtown Seattle June 12 

Are you too young to think about retirement? Think again! 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. 

Please bring your lunch and join your King County Retirement team for a three-hour seminar featuring guest speakers from Social Security and Jean Cormier, an expert in Medicare choices and options. You’ll also learn about the resources available to you through King County. 

Space is available and registration is required. 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.    


Pride is coming! Order your t-shirt by June 14! 

The 2019 Pride t-shirts are ready to order! Fill out the order form, get payment ready ($8.50 each shirt, cash or check preferred, no credit or debit cards) and return the completed form with payment to Mariah Taylor in person or via interoffice mail (CNK-PH-1250) by Friday, June 14. Orders without payment will not be submitted. If you work outside of the downtown core and want your shirt sent through interoffice mail, include your mailstop on your order form. 

As a reminder, we will have an additional 150 adult size t-shirts available at no cost on a first-come, first-serve basis the morning of the Parade, Sunday, June 30. Further details about when and where we will meet for the Parade will be sent out once it is available. To stay up to date on all things Pride Parade related, send an email to Mariah.Taylor@kingcounty.gov with the subject line PRIDE Info. 

kcso wellness

The Worksite Fund supports mental health at work 

While May was Mental Health Awareness Month, it’s important to keep the conversation going all year long. The Balanced You Worksite Fund is one way to do just that! This mini-grant program provides funding up to $5,000, per awarded project, to improve health and well-being at your worksite. This is one way to address mental health for you and your colleagues. Applications for the 2019 Worksite Fund must be received by July 3 at 5 p.m.

If you’re working on supporting mental health in your workplace, check out two projects below that were awarded in 2018. We also included sample projects to get you started! 

Sheriff’s Office Wellness Room 

Employees from the King County Sheriff’s Office Records Unit repurposed an old file and copy room into a wellness room where team members can relax in privacy or gather informally. Read more.

Tech Tip: Use your work badge


How to access the training:  

To start your Cyber Security Awareness Training please login at:  

Your account for Securing the Human:  

  • Username: King County email address  
  • Password: King County email password  

For more information about Cyber Security please visit our Sharepoint site:  


Pet of the Week: Hannah 

Put your hands in the air for Hannah, our Pet of the Week! 

This senior chow was brought in by her previous owner. Hannah is a very smart, sweet, and cuddly dog who is truly seeking to be your “one and only.” Hannah is deaf and therefore is sensitive to handling. Her personality color is “Bashful Blue,” so she prefers to take things slow. Hannah may also get nervous in new situations, so she is looking for a home where those around her understand that she may take some time warming up. That being said, once she gets to know you – she will be a devoted friend! Read more. 

To see this pet and view other animals available for adoption, visit www.kingcounty.gov/adoptapet. 

Featured Job: Veteran Fellow - Administrative and Professional Experiences 

Salary: $16.60 - $30.03 Hourly 

Location: Seattle, WA 

Job Type: Veteran Fellowship 

Department: DHR - Human Resources 

Job Number: 2019BHC 

King County is taking public service to a new level and winning national recognition as a model of excellence. King County as an organization has 40+ lines of business, 13,000+ employees and a $9+ billion biennial budget. Working here gives you a chance to have fun and make an impact in your community. Together, we're innovating government in ways that give you the opportunity to use your talents, develop new skills, and see the difference you make in your community every day. We strongly value the leadership skills, teamwork, problem-solving, mission orientation and multi-cultural awareness that military service personnel offer.  We created the Vets 4 HIRE Program to support Veterans in making a successful transition from military to civilian employment and to provide a pipeline of skilled military talent for positions within King County.  

Learn more about this position or view all available positions. 

KC Headlines

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