Jennifer Gregerson to run for mayor

By Sara Bruestle | Mar 20, 2013
Jennifer Gregerson

Mukilteo City Councilmember Jennifer Gregerson announced Sunday that she is running for mayor.

Gregerson seeks to unseat Joe Marine, who has served as mayor for the last seven years. The election for the next four-year term will be held in November.

“I’m committed to Mukilteo and I’m ready to lead,” Gregerson said. “I’m not a career politician – I’m running because I care about Mukilteo and its future.

“Together, we can make Mukilteo great.”

Gregerson, 34, has served as a councilmember since 2004, including two years as council president. She is a lifetime resident of Mukilteo.

Her priorities are public safety, keeping taxes low, support for local businesses and to continue the fight against Paine Field expansion.

As a councilmember, she has led efforts to establish the city’s own paramedic services, invest in a Paine Field Defense Fund and introduce a Youth Substance Abuse Prevention Initiative.

“This is a good opportunity and the right time to do it,” she said of her run. “There are a lot of important issues on the horizon.”

Marine was first elected to the office in 2005 and re-elected in 2009. He was unopposed in the first race and won his second term against 26-year resident Pat Smith, who has since moved to Stanwood.

“I see no tactical or philosophical differences between Ms. Gregerson and Mayor Marine, and that’s why Ms. Gregerson endorsed Joe Marine four years ago,” Smith said.

“I would love to see an alternative candidate.”

Although he hasn’t made an official announcement, Marine said he is “absolutely” going to seek a third term.

“I think I’ve taken the city in a very good direction, and I plan to continue to do that,” he said. “I’ve got some projects I want closure on, like the waterfront.”

Marine said he’s not surprised Gregerson is running. He said she first mentioned to him in 2010 that she’d like to be mayor, around the time he was running for re-election.

Gregerson is a member of the Puget Sound Regional Council's Growth Management Advisory Board and Snohomish County Tomorrow's Steering Committee. She is also a member of the council's Public Safety, Paine Field Airport and Sustainability committees.

In addition, she is president of the Mukilteo Lighthouse Festival Association and volunteers with the Farmers Market.

Gregerson is a Kamiak High School graduate. She has a bachelor’s degree in French with a minor in journalism from New York University and a master’s degree in Urban Planning from the University of Washington.

“I’ve grown up in Mukilteo,” she said. “My parents taught me the value of hard work and speaking out to make sure your voice is heard and that you’re a part of the vision for your community.”

She works as an independent sales representative for Herff Jones Yearbooks and owns two small businesses in Mukilteo, Yearbooks Plus and Sound Yearbooks.

The mayor of Mukilteo is a full-time, non-partisan position that pays $70,800 a year. Elections for the office are held in odd-numbered years. The deadline to register for the mayoral race is May 17.

Gregerson’s campaign will kick off with a town hall meeting at 1 p.m. Sunday, March 24, at Rosehill Community Center, 304 Lincoln Ave.

“This campaign isn’t about me; it’s about our community,” Gregerson said. “When we’ve faced tough issues in the past, I have found that the best solutions come from listening carefully and being open to new ideas.”

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