Who We Are

The Seattle Women's Commission is composed of 21 accomplished individuals who come together as volunteers to research, analyze and make recommendations to the Mayor, City Council, and City Departments on issues facing women in Seattle. Nine commissioners are appointed by the Mayor, nine appointments are made by the City Council, and two appointments are made by the Commission. Commissioners are appointed to a two year term of office and serve without pay. A 21st member joins the Commission each year through Get Engaged, a leadership development program for 18-29 year olds.

The Seattle Office for Civil Rights provides staff and support to the Commission.

Learn About Commission Work


Meet Our Commissioners

Rhonda Carter

Rhonda Carter

Member
Appointed by: Mayor
Term: 07/02/2017 - 07/02/2023

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Rhonda M. Carter serves as Chief of Staff at Sound Transit. A native of the South Puget Sound region, she has returned to the area after 10 years living and working in Washington, D.C., to drive initiatives that will enable Sound Transit to continue to deliver on an ambitious and newly expanded capital program and increase the agency’s operating capacity.

Prior to joining Sound Transit, Rhonda was Deputy Chief of Staff to Secretary Anthony R. Foxx at the U.S. Department of Transportation. Before that, she was the White House Liaison in the Office of the Secretary at the U.S. Department of Energy, where she advised Secretary Ernest J. Moniz and other senior officials on a wide array of personnel, operations, and management issues. She began her service to President Obama’s Administration on January 21, 2009 as an aide in the Office of the White House Counsel, where she worked on judicial nominations, including those of Supreme Court Justices Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan.

Earlier in her career, she worked for the Obama-Biden Presidential Transition Team as Assistant to the General Counsel, and at the Center for American Progress, a non-partisan think tank in Washington, D.C., as Special Assistant for Domestic Policy. Rhonda started her career coordinating a federally-funded TRiO program focused on the matriculation of low-income, first-generation students at the University of Washington in Seattle.

Darya Farivar

Darya Farivar

Co-Chair
Appointed by: City Council
Term: 07/02/2017 - 07/02/2023

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Darya received her Bachelor of Arts in Communicative Disorders and minored in Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies from the University of Redlands. While there she volunteered in the juvenile justice system, led her sorority, and founded the Middle Eastern Student Association. After graduation, she worked and advocated for immigrants and refugees who have loved ones with developmental disabilities, there she began promoting cultural awareness within the disability community.

Now, Darya works at Disability Rights Washington as the Community and Legislative Liaison, where she teaches people with disabilities how to effectively use their voice and engage with systemic advocacy. In addition, Darya is committed to ensuring educational justice for all. She represents cultural and linguistic diversity in her position as Policy Chair for OSPI's Special Education Advisory Council. While off the clock she volunteers as the Goalie Coach for Roosevelt Women's Water Polo. Darya holds her Iranian heritage close to her heart, believes that social justice is a lifestyle, and is passionate about intersectionality.  

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Diya Khanna

Member
Appointed by: Commission
Term: 07/02/2018 - 07/02/2022
K. Min Pease

K. Min Pease

Co-Chair
Appointed by: City Council
Term: 07/02/2017 - 07/0/2023

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Min Pease leads Echoing Green's impact investing program. Echoing Green is a 30 year old nonprofit that supports start-up entrepreneurs seeking to make positive social and environmental change, including those that have launched Teach For America, Public Allies, One Acre Fund, and more. Seattle-based grantees include Equal Opportunity Schools, Hugo House, and Stockbox Grocers.
 She helps entrepreneurs get investment ready, oversees investor relations, and manages research. She has a BA in Economics from Whitman College and a MSc in Development Management from the London School of Economics and Political Science.

Zoe True

Zoё True

Member
Appointed by: Mayor
Term: 07/02/2017 - 07/02/2023

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Zoë (she/her) is a social impact strategy consultant, community advocate, and mom. As a social impact consultant at Intentional Futures, she untangles complex evidence to inform strategy and solve problems. She also has led the company's DEI efforts, guiding them through an audit, strategy development, and policy implementation.

On the Seattle Women's Commission, Zoë chaired the Community Health and Wellness Committee for three years. During that time the committee led various activities, such as hosting community awareness events focused on the health impact of experiencing homelessness and on disparities in maternal health access and quality.
She came to Seattle nearly a decade ago to attend the Evans School of Public Policy at UW, earning an MPA. There she conducted research with the Evans School Policy Analysis and Research group on a broad range of issues including women's mutual aid groups in Africa and Asia.

Zoë's commitment to women's health is also reflected in her work at PATH, where she coordinated teams developing maternal vaccines to improve the health of mothers and infants worldwide. Prior to Seattle, she served in the US Peace Corps in Morocco where she led women's health-empowerment conferences. And, before joining the Peace Corps, Zoë worked on political campaigns, led development at an arts education nonprofit in Los Angeles, and earned her MA in Political Science.

Jamilah Williams

Jamilah Williams

Co-Chair
Appointed by: City Council
Term: 07/02/2017 - 07/02/2023

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Jamilah Williams is the Digital Communications Specialist at Planned Parenthood Votes Northwest and Hawaii (PPVNH). Before being promoted into this position, she was a Community Organizer at PPVNH for 2 years. Working at PPVNH has allowed her to fall in love with politics all the while getting to work on what she's passionate about - reproductive health and rights. She graduated from the University of Washington (UW) with a Bachelor of Arts in Gender, Women, and Sexuality studies and a minor in Diversity studies where she received the Herring Phelps Award for scholarly activism. While at the University of Washington, she served as the Director for the Women's Action Commission where she had the honor and pleasure of putting on The ______ Monologues -- an original, more inclusive version of The Vagina Monologues. Always having loved team sports, she joined the UW Women's Rugby club where she served as Fundraiser and Vice President. When she's not fighting the patriarchy, she enjoys taking her cat for walks, hanging with her squad, and trying new restaurants and breweries with her partner. She served on the Outreach Committee at You Grow Girl! and is on the Organizing Committee of Radical Ravens as well as on the Women of Color Advisory Group for the YWCA of Seattle King Snohomish. You can find her on Twitter @jamillionairess.

Tana Yasu

Tana Yasu

Member
Appointed by: City Council
Term: 07/02/2018 - 07/01/2022

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Tana Yasu is a Seattle Native who was raised in the Rainier Valley neighborhood. An entrepreneur in the Hair Care and Design industry for more than 20 years, she is now community activist and writer for NW Facts Media Group. Tana loves being out among the community, and volunteers with several local organizations like the Historic Central Area Arts and Cultural District, Disabled American Veterans, Real World Economic Development Academy, the Dr. Martin Luther King Memorial Celebration Committee, and Rainier Avenue Radio. In working with these organizations, Tana has contributed to many projects that have impacted lives for the better. Tana is excited for the opportunity to help women in Seattle on a deeper level. Tana is a proud Seattleite, and wants to serve as a connection to communities and women who are impacted by poverty and under-education.

Headshot for Abriel Johnny.

Abriel Johnny

Member
Appointed by: Mayor
Term: 7/2/2020 - 7/1/2022

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Abriel Johnny (she/her) is Cowichan (father's side) and Tlingit (mother's side). She was born and raised in King County. She is the Board of Directors Chair for United Indians of All Tribes Foundation. She has a Bachelors of Arts in Law and  Policy from University of Washington and a Master's in Political Management from George Washington University. She is a cultural knowledge holder, a teacher, an artist, an athlete, an advocate, political strategist, a healthcare systematic oppression disruptor, and Decolonizer.

In 2020, she was named one of the Gates Foundations 100 local Changemakers Awardees. In 2021, she was awarded the Adaline Garcia Community Service Award as a Future Leader honoree.

She currently works for HealthierHere as a Community and Tribal Engagement Manager with a primary focus on Tribal health. Her work focuses on equity within Healthcare policy and implementation for all communities with a special focus on Urban Indian and Tribal Nation's health. In her personal life, she is an artist of multiple mediums including beadwork and clothing design. Her designs focus on blending and honoring historical cultural traditions with modern fashions.

Headshot for Jema Turk.

Jema Turk

Member
Appointed by: City Council
Term: 7/2/2019 - 7/2/2023

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Jema Turk (she/her) directs the research and evaluation efforts of the national Ryan Residency Training Program at the University of California, San Francisco. She has published multiple quantitative and qualitative studies on family planning and abortion training. She is currently co-leading a prospective cohort study on obstetrician gynecologists and their family planning practice post-residency. She also acts as a Senior Evaluation Consultant for Innovating Education in Reproductive Health (IERH). Prior to UCSF, Jema was the research associate at Stanford University's Clayman Institute for Gender Research, where she oversaw research analyses for a national study on dual-academic career couples.

Jema received her PhD in Social Policy and Master's degree in Women's Studies from Brandeis University, and a Master's in Public Policy from the LBJ School at the University of Texas. Jema is mom to two and lives in the Fremont neighborhood of Seattle. 

Headshot for Kyla Evans.

Kyla Evans

Member
Appointed by: City Council
Term: 7/2/2021 - 7/1/2023

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Kyla Evans (she/her) is a clinical social worker at Harborview Medical Center where she provides case management and psychotherapy services to adults with mental health and substance use disorders. Her professional background includes domestic and international advocacy within local and national government, as well program development and management with a focus on women's issues, health equity, and criminal justice. She recently completed consulting work for Duwamish Tribal Services and served as a founding member of a student, staff, and faculty led collective aimed at integrating an abolitionist lens into social work practice at the University of Washington. Kyla served in the United States Peace Corps in Malawi from 2015-2018. During this time, she worked on grassroots projects addressing gender-based violence and health disparities; she also served as a member of a national Ministry of Gender taskforce to create the Government of Malawi's first National Strategy on Ending Child Marriage (launched in 2018).

Kyla holds a Master of Social Work from the University of Washington (2020) and a Master of Science from the DePaul University School of Public Service (2013).  Kyla graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Communication Studies from Eastern Washington University (2010) where she was a co-captain on the women's basketball team. Kyla Evans was born and raised in Brewster, Washington. 

Headshot for Marcia Wright Soika.

Marcia Wright-Soika

Member
Appointed by: Mayor
Term: 7/2/2019 - 7/2/2023

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Marcia Wright-Soika (she/her) has served in development, communications, grantmaking, and program management roles for 15 years, starting her career as a journalist and then transitioning to the nonprofit sector. She currently serves as the Executive Director of FamilyWorks, a Seattle nonprofit that connects neighbors and families to nourishing food, essential resources, and a supportive community. FamilyWorks operates food banks in Wallingford and Greenwood, and a Family Resource Center with a wide array of family-focused programs. 

Marcia previously served as the Director of Philanthropy and Strategic Partnerships for Mercy Housing Inc.'s Pacific Northwest region, and led philanthropy, communications, and community partnership efforts to expand affordable housing opportunities and resident services in Washington State.  Prior to moving to Seattle in 2018, she spent more than a decade serving in leadership positions for women and girls' empowerment organizations, first as a development and program associate at the Chester County Fund for Women and Girls in suburban Philadelphia, and later as the Director of Development and Communications at YWCA Delaware.

Marcia's board service and volunteerism have been centered on social and racial justice, creating diversity, and women's leadership. She currently serves as a Commissioner on the City of Seattle Women's Commission, on the executive committee of the Seattle Food Committee (network of 27 Seattle food banks), and on the steering committee of the Seattle Human Services Coalition. Marcia earned a Master of Business Administration (MBA) with a concentration in Organizational Leadership from Wilmington University in 2016. She graduated from Pennsylvania State University with Bachelor of Arts degrees in Journalism and Women's Studies.

Whitney Nakamura

Member
Appointed by: Commission
Term: 7/2/2018 - 7/1/2022

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Whitney (she/her) is a mother, social worker and pizza enthusiast. She is committed to centering and amplifying the voices, needs and ambitions of our local communities. After a decade in social service settings, Whitney is working to expand her imagination and capacity to engage in social change/social justice work. She is grateful for the opportunity to share her perspective and experiences to advance the work of our Commission and City.