Councilmember Teresa Mosqueda (Position 8, Citywide) celebrated Seattle-King County Public Health Director Patty Hayes, who announced her retirement after a lifetime of public service in the public health and policy sector.
“Patty is an outstanding public servant, leader, and health equity champion. I’m honored to call her a mentor and a friend, and I’m grateful for the key role she has played in responding to the historic crisis we’ve faced in combating the unfolding impact of COVID-19,” said Councilmember Teresa Mosqueda. “Patty’s stewardship will be missed and her example has offered us with the highest possible standards we can hope for in a public health leader.”
Mosqueda had the opportunity to work under Director Hayes when she was the Division Director of Community and Family Health while Mosqueda worked at the Washington State Department of Health from 2005-2007, and work with Director Hayes when she was the Executive Director at WithinReach when Mosqueda was at the Children’s Alliance.
Since 2014, Director Hayes has led Seattle-King County Public Health, a health department of 1,500 employees serving two million King County residents. The department provides various public health services including epidemiology, communicable disease control, environmental health services, jail health services, emergency medical services coordination and delivery, medical examiner services and a county-wide community health center system.
Director Hayes’ recognitions include the prestigious University of Washington Alumnus Summa Laude Dignatus Award, the Heroine of Health Care Award from the Center of Women and Democracy, the 2017 Seattle Magazine’s Most Influential People of the Year, and the Cynthia F. Shurtleff Award, a statewide honor that recognizes extraordinary leadership and dedication to the health and well-being of women, children and families in Washington, according to Hayes’ bio.
Throughout her career Director Hayes has been an active advocate of race and social justice in the public health field. She along with County Executive Constantine declared racism as a public health crisis, and has led SKCPH in efforts to address systemic and institutional racist policies that have long impacted BIPOC community.
“Director Hayes’ stewardship as one of the most prominent voices for public health in our region can’t be overemphasized and is deserving of our highest praise. I wish Director Hayes a happy retirement and send her my gratitude and appreciation for leading our public health department forward for all these years, especially in the last year in responding to COVID-19, and know that we will continue to see her advocate for the public’s health,” Mosqueda concluded.