“Daddy won!” shouted one of Jesse Young’s daughters, after Young was appointed to the vacant 26th district house seat.
The seat is open after Jan Angel resigned following her election to the Senate. Young was the top choice of the local Republican parties in an applicant pool that included Adam Berman and Doug Cloud.
Young lives in Gig Harbor with his wife, Jennie, and five children. After the resolution was passed, Young’s children -- who took up a row at the Gig Harbor Civic Center -- hugged their father and cheered. Young said it was important to him that his children be there for the public process, so they can see what their father is involved in.
Marlyn Jensen, a precinct committee officer, called Young a “one in a million” candidate.
“He really is the American dream,” she said.
Young grew up in the Hilltop neighborhood of Tacoma. Occasionally homeless, Young worked his way through school and was valedictorian of Wilson High School. He washed dishes to put himself through Notre Dame.
Young doesn’t frame his success story as a dream-story but as a track record. He has a “history of achievement,” he told the council and commission.
When asked which three committees he would like to be on, Young named Technology and Economic Development; Transportation and Health Care. He said his work in the IT industry will bring a unique skill set to the legislature. Currently, he works as a health care consultant with Kaiser Permanente.
“I really believe I have a unique skill set that will serve the district well in Olympia,” he said.
He previously ran for congress against then-incumbent Norm Dicks.
Applicant Adam Berman did not attend the meeting. He had prior commitment to film a pilot, friend Matt Finn said. Finn read a statement on Berman’s behalf.