By Mellow DeTray
At Monday night’s (Feb. 6, 2023) special meeting of the Normandy Park City Council, Jack Lamanna was selected for the seat vacated by former Councilmember Michelle Sipes-Marvin.
City Council Position #5 Filled
Three strong candidates applied by the Feb. 1 deadline for the Council seat vacated by former Councilmember Michelle Sipes-Marvin.
All three applicants met the requirements, being registered voters as well as Normandy Park residents for at least one year.
The order each applicant was interviewed was chosen by lottery, and Councilmembers took turns asking them questions.
- Jack Lamanna, a young father and relative newcomer to the City who married a local, and whose parents are also relocating to Normandy Park;
- Melissa Petrini, a homeschooling mother of six who has lived in Normandy Park for 5 years and has been involved in school committees, as her kids transition to public school; and
- Brian Volkert, a retired CPA originally from Burien, with decades of financial management experience.
After a brief executive session, Council reminded each candidate that they can always run for a Council position in the election later this year, and hoped they would all remain active and valuable participants in the community.
They then voted to place Lamanna on the Council seat,
Born in New York State, Lamanna moved to Seattle where he managed cafes and experienced firsthand the interaction between small businesses and city government. He says that Normandy Park’s size allows for more creative and granular solutions than would be possible in a big city. He said consistency is a great way to enhance trust in city governance.
Lamanna mentioned that the QFC parking lot is what he hears the most complaints about, but that the change he feels Normandy Park could use is improved recreational space, including a place for classes, gatherings, and getting out of the elements, as well as enhanced green spaces, mentioning that he thought some of the parks could be maintained and improved a bit. He also said communication to the public about city planning could be improved. Lamanna said his favorite thing about Normandy Park is the small town feel, which affords a magical sense of community.
Lamanna will take the oath of office at the Feb. 12, 2023 Council Meeting.
Sound Cities Association Public Issues Committee
Mayor Sue-Ann Hohimer serves as Normandy Park’s representative on the Sound Cities Association Public Issues Committee (SCA PIC), and received Council permission to seek solutions beyond “Housing First” to address problems facing modern cities. Housing First is the current focus of many area programs, and Mayor Hohimer wants PIC to look into other approaches to drug addiction, such as intervention, recovery, treatment, and prevention.
Mellow DeTray is a Seattle native who has spent the last 16 years raising her family in Burien. She has volunteered at many local establishments over the years, including the Burien Library, Burien Actors Theatre, and Hot Feet Fitness. After working for 10 years at Burien Community Center, she moved on to teaching fitness classes and to work the front desk of a Burien yoga studio. For many years Mellow kept a moderately popular cooking & lifestyle blog, and she had a brief stint in political journalism during a local election. Clear and informative writing has always been a side hobby of Mellow’s and she looks forward to bringing you unbiased coverage of City Council meetings.