New Kent City Councilmember Zandria Michaud officially took office on Tuesday.
Mayor Dana Ralph swore in Michaud in Council Chambers after King County Elections certified the Nov. 5 general election results. Michaud received 58 percent of the vote to defeat Awale Farah. She won despite being outspent during the campaign $57,305 to $8,592, according to the state Public Disclosure Commission.
Michaud replaces Dennis Higgins, who filled out Ralph’s council term after voters elected her mayor in 2017. Michaud will be sworn in again when her four-year term starts in January.
Michaud’s first official duty will be Tuesday, Dec. 3 at the council’s Committee of the Whole meeting. Her first regular council meeting will be Tuesday, Dec. 10.
Michaud grew up in Kent near Park Orchard and graduated from Kentwood High School. She served five years in the U.S. Army as a broadcast journalist and public affairs specialist, according to the city website. She met her husband while in the Army and they have one son.
Her work in the community includes five years on the Kent Parks and Recreation Commission, including a term as vice chair and a term as chair. She served as a Green Kent Steward for the city, a Kent School District volunteer and a youth basketball coach for the city Parks Department and the YMCA.
Michaud recently graduated from the University of Washington Tacoma with a bachelor’s degree in American studies with a minor in politics and global honors, while maintaining a 4.0 GPA. She dedicated her studies to finding ways to improve democracy in city-level government, focusing on civic engagement.
In her free time, Michaud and her family enjoy hikes, exploring Kent’s parks and open spaces and traveling near and abroad.
Larimer sworn in
Ralph also swore in Councilmember Marli Larimer. The council appointed Larimer in 2018 to fill out the term of Tina Budell, who moved to Chicago for a new job. Voters elected Larimer on Nov. 5 to four more years. She defeated Todd Minor with 55 percent of the vote.
Larimer will be sworn in again in January along with Michaud as well as incumbents Les Thomas and Bill Boyce, who each defeated their challengers on the general election ballot.
Council members Brenda Fincher, Toni Troutner and Satwinder Kaur each have two years left on their terms as does Mayor Ralph.