For Bellingham City Council At-Large
My roots in Bellingham are 40 years deep! Since coming here to attend Western Washington University in the 1980s, Bellingham has been my home. I built my life here, raised my family, and developed community in Bellingham. I am an engaged member of our community for the last 40 years. I started doing the work at WWU and haven’t stopped since. I am not interested in the status quo and continually work to improve the lives of others. Running for Bellingham City Council is a calling and the culmination of my life’s work of service leadership. I believe in Bellingham and will continue my advocacy and collaboration with our community’s local nonprofits, charities, and civil servants.
I am running to leverage my 40 years of experience and relationships to continue my positive work in our community. I believe in being the change you want to see in the world and live my life to effect the change that will benefit ALL of Bellingham!
Meet Russ Whidbee
Hello Bellingham Friends and Neighbors!
I am running for the At-Large City Council position. This isn’t a decision I made lightly. I feel it is a calling to serve. I chose to make this commitment after long thought and consideration about the challenges our city continues to face. I believe I can bring people together and provide the collaborative leadership we need to help resolve our difficult challenges. I consider myself a “Bridge Maker and Change Agent.”
I was born and raised in Brooklyn, New York, then moved to Federal Way where I graduated from high school, and in the early to mid-1980s attended Western Washington University. At WWU I served on the Associated Students Board and began fulfilling my goal to become a leader. I was proud to help develop the WWU recycling program that went on to inspire Bellingham’s curb-side recycling. Bellingham has been my home for these past 40 years. This is where I raised my family and have established a career as a financial advisor and teacher of Accounting at both Whatcom Community College and Bellingham Technical College.
Most importantly, I have had the honor to serve my community through volunteering on numerous nonprofit organizations and charities. You may remember me from my previous service on the Whatcom County Board of Equalization, or as a board member and community activist with the Bellingham Technical College Foundation; Kulshan Community Land Trust; Whatcom Volunteer Center; the Community Leadership Advisory Board at Woodring College, WWU; or on the basketball court mentoring the Western men’s basketball team. I am currently serving Bellingham on the Planning Commission, where I am a voice for increased affordability from the development community.
Collaboration, not confrontation, is how I will lead as your City Council member. Thank you for the opportunity to share my story. I will be honored to receive your vote in November.
Russ’s Experience – Highlights
- Financial Advisor (1999-Present);
- Adjunct Faculty, Accounting; Whatcom Community College & Bellingham Technical College.
- Western Washington University, City University of Seattle, Bachelor of Science Accounting, 1992
Community Service (abridged)
- Bellingham City Planning Commission
- Emeritus member, former President; Bellingham Technical College Foundation
- Member; American Federation of Teachers
- Mentor Coach; WWU Men’s Basketball
- Former President; Whatcom Volunteer Center
- Former Co-chair; Community Leadership Advisory Board, Woodring College WWU
- Former Co-chair; Brothers and Sisters of Whatcom (BASOW)
- Former Vice President of Academic Affairs; Associated Students of WWU
- Former Business Manager; Western Front
- Former President; Black Unified Society (BUS) of WWU
- Board of Equalization; Whatcom County
- Citizen Advisory Board; Bellingham Police Department
- Citizens’ Advisory Committee; Bellingham Public Schools
- Dollars for Scholars; Bellingham Public Schools
- Kulshan Community Land Trust for Affordable Housing
- Racial Justice Coalition, City of Bellingham
- Birchwood Food Desert Fighters
- National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP)