About Shirley Sutton
By way of introduction, I’ll say that my values and community commitment come from my upbringing in Yakima. When my parents were denied bank financing to start their grocery store due to redlining community members donated to make it happen. We thanked them by offering store credit during hard times. I worked for 20 years at Burlington Northern Railroad and gained experience in labor relations and management. My most important insight is that the people most affected by policy decisions must be at the table.
I earned my MA in education/law and Justice and worked as director of homeless programs in Yakima schools. 8 years on the Governor's Homeless Commission gave me an understanding of the power of public programs to positively change people’s lives.
In all my positions held, from the Yakima Schools to Edmonds Community College, I tackled issues involving equity and inclusion. When contacted about the open position of Director of Equity and Diversity position at Edmonds Community College in 2001, I was delighted to accept this position as it broaden my experience in working/living in more diverse communities and cultures. In my roles as an educator, this provided the opportunity to broaden my knowledge and community contacts, as I promote issues of human and civil rights of all individuals in our schools, colleges and community.
I’m inspired by the youth climate movement, the powerful movement for Black Lives Matter, and by the unity of Native Tribes protecting land and water. Never forgetting we stand on the shoulders of our ancestors.