The Mayor and City Council recently announced the initial 13 appointees selected to serve on the City of Seattle’s new Community Involvement Commission (CIC). The CIC will ultimately be comprised of 16 equity champions who will work to ensure that our City departments are creating and implementing equitable engagement strategies that lead to more relevant and impactful public participation. All appointees are subject to City Council confirmation.
City Council Appointee: District 3
Natalie Curtis relocated from Texas to Washington six years ago. She has a B.A in Rehabilitation Studies and a minor in Substance Abuse, which in-turn allows her to help those in the community who need care the most. She currently works at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center and is pursuing her masters in Non-Profit Leadership at Seattle University as well as a certificate in Public Administration. She is the Vice President of the Capitol Hill Community Council, serves as a HALA Community Focus Groups representative, and is the Community Impact Advisor for a non-profit that helps unrepresented minorities in STEM-related careers. Natalie also spends her time volunteering to empower and mentor minority girls. She wholeheartedly believes that everyone should enjoy where they live and give back to the community as much as possible.
What inspired you to serve on the Community Involvement Commission?
I think it is important to have all perspectives at the table, especially the perspectives of people that are not often invited to be part of the conversations but are the fabric of the community. I think I can add a unique, well-needed perspective about the changes shaping the community and what it takes to preserve its spirit.
We’ve taken to calling our Community Involvement Commissioners “EQUITY CHAMPIONS!” Do you accept this superhero moniker and what does it mean to you personally?
YES! I think people need to know the difference between equality and equity. I hope to be able to translate this in our work moving forward.
What is your unique real-life superpower?
I think being able to see life through various lenses is my real-life superpower. Being a person of color, a woman, a renter, and being raised in the South have allowed me to see life a lot differently than most. I think this has allowed me to have another level of empathy for those that are marginalized in various situations.
What do you hope the Community Involvement Commission will bring to the City?
I’m hoping that we can engage more people in the community and provide more representation for the actual people who live here. Also, I look forward to moving the Race and Social Justice Initiative from documentation into action.
Which local organization or person do you consider to be a true superhero and why?
I do not have just have one. I think we work better together than we do working in silos. So, I would have to say that Centerstone is an organization that has impressed me with their ability to engage other organizations in getting things accomplished for the Central District.
Learn more about the Community Involvement Commission at seattle.gov/neighborhoods/community-involvement-commission.