Elect Darren Mills

Darren Mills

Business Owner | Community Leader

Twenty-one years ago, when Bill Clinton looked into a camera and spoke directly to my generation, I became hooked on politics. Up to that point in 1992 I'd felt disenfranchised by politics and had not even exercised my right to vote. But that single defining moment sparked a civic interest in me and now, in 2013, that spark has touched off my determination to run for Olympia City Council.

I grew up in Chehalis, Washington in a pro-union household where my father instilled a strong work ethic in my brother, sisters and myself. Both my brother and I continued the union tradition in our adult careers: he as a second generation sheet metal worker; I as a professional hairstylist in New York City where I lived for five years and enjoyed a successful career working on Broadway, film and TV.

There is a unique quality of life that is found only by being a part of a small community. Missing that sense of community, I came home to Olympia, put down roots and built my business and my life here. Frida, my hair salon located in the heart of downtown, opened in 2006 during a relatively healthy economy. By September of 2008 that economic health had changed and most of us have been hit hard in the aftermath of the meltdown. Business owners have fought to keep their doors open and we all struggle to continue to provide for ourselves and families. Through my own experience, I have become keenly aware of the important role that Federal, State and City government can play in the success or failure of our local economy.

I joined The PBIA (Parking Business Improvement Area) board two years ago, believing that one of the best investments I could make in our community was to work towards improving our downtown through safety and beautification. Creating community gathering-spaces is a relatively low cost/high impact way to work towards a capital city that the entire state can be proud of. I'm proud to have chaired the three committees on PBIA that have been instrumental in the Artesian Well mosaic project, two parklets, tree benches, the new itsyourolympia.com website, as well as advocating for funding of The Downtown Ambassador Program.

If you had asked me back in 1992 whether I would ever run for public office I probably would have laughed but here I am, 21 years later, doing just that. The call to civic duty is a strong one, one that I'm proud to answer and, with your help, it would be my honor to serve as a Olympia City Councilmember.

PO Box 2692
Olympia, WA 98507

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