Mayor Durkan Statement on Selection of Regina Cannon as the First CEO of the King County Regional Homelessness Authority

Seattle (February 4, 2021) – Mayor Jenny A. Durkan issued the following statement on the selection of Regina Cannon as the first CEO of the King County Regional Homelessness Authority (KCRHA). Today, Ms. Cannon was unanimously selected by the KCRHA Implementation Board and the Governing Committee. 

“Today we’ve reached a critical milestone in our efforts to address the humanitarian crisis facing our region. With the unanimous selection of Regina Cannon as the new King County Regional Homelessness Authority CEO we demonstrated the ability to come together to address one of our most challenging issues.  

“Ms. Cannon’s service across governments, her strong background in equitable housing and supportive services, and the intersection with racial equity are huge assets and will help inform her ability to deliver results for our region’s most vulnerable neighbors. I’m confident she will develop the strategies necessary to significantly address homelessness throughout our region. 

“The COVID-19 pandemic had us in unchartered territory throughout 2020. While everything changed around us – from the way we interact with each other to the way governments function – the Governing Committee’s and the Implementation Board’s leadership and commitment to a rigorous process have gotten us to today’s outcome. Their work underscores our commitment to moving past the fragmented approach that failed in attempts to resolve this crisis.  

“Thank you to Co-Chairs Nate Caminos and Harold Odom and Implementation Board members, who spent countless hours overseeing this recruitment. Thank you, also, to my fellow Governing Committee members. Today’s joint decision is the expression of our collective commitment to collaborating on a regional response to this crisis that impacts communities across our County.  

“I also want to acknowledge and give special thanks to Marc Dones. From the beginning of this journey, Marc championed the founding of the Regional Authority, underscoring the need to build a homelessness crisis response system that was accountable not only to the public but, more importantly, to people experiencing homelessness by centering their experience. Without their leadership, we would not have reached this milestone today. 

“While it will be challenging, we are now better positioned to do the hard work ahead. We have an excellent leader who is laser focused on outcomes and on ensuring individuals throughout our region are receiving the services they need where they need them. We must always pair these efforts with building more affordable housing in every part of our county. Safe and affordable housing, with adequate supportive services, is the long-term solution.”