Thoughts about my friend, Scott White.

Thoughts about my friend,  Scott White.

Smart. Kind.  Collegial.

Those are three of the first adjectives that come to mind when I think of my dear friend Scott White.

Scott and I worked together at King County.  He became chief of staff of the King County Council when I was Chief Civil Deputy for Norm Maleng, our former King County Prosecuting Attorney.

Scott worked his way up the administrative ladder, starting as a policy and budget analyst for King County Council.  He worked hard, knew how to build consensus, and he also knew who he could count on.  He was always one of the people I could count on to know the facts and to know the lay of the land.  I could also count on his word.  Always.

Scott took great joy in his family; he smiled that crooked smile of his whenever I asked about Alison and the kids.  His cell phone was always at the ready with a new photo or two.

Though Scott and I talked frequently when the legislature was in session, we had a standing once-every-fall lunch.  He delighted in his work in the legislature.  He was a man who could think big, and pull people together to solve problems.  Find a resolution to the SR 520 debate?  No problem.  Work on a better Growth Management strategy?  Scott was on it.

His death at 41 is a tragedy for all of us.  He was way too young to leave what he cared about so deeply: his family, his 46th District, the University of Washington, the many environmental organizations he supported.  And so much more.

The last time I saw him was the night he passed.  He had been on our panel that day in Suncadia, along with Rep. Judy Clibborn, Rep. Mike Armstrong, and Senator Curtis King.  Along with Councilmember Tim Burgess, we discussed the need to create success for both the east side and the west side of our State.   Scott knew that an effective statewide transportation network was every bit as vital to Wenatchee and Yakima as it is for us in Seattle.  He could hear his colleagues, and was ready to work with them across party and state lines to address their concerns.

Scott understood that the art of negotiation starts with trust and listening.  He always thanked others first, and remained humble and true to his friends and colleagues.

Scott White, rest in peace.   Please know that you made your mark in the short time we were blessed to spend with you.

–Sally Bagshaw

© 1995-2016 City of Seattle