Leesa Manion was sworn in as King County Prosecuting Attorney on Jan. 9—the first woman and first person of color to hold that position.
“I am honored to be the first Korean American woman in the United States to be elected Prosecuting Attorney,” she said in her remarks. “When I announced my run for office, I expected to encounter surprises along the way. I’m so happy that one of those surprises turned out to be an unexpected gift: our Asian American communities, and especially our Korean American community, welcomed me like a long, lost daughter.”
Manion added, “This feeling is why representation matters. We all want to be seen. We all want to be understood. We all want to be recognized as worthy.”
On that same day, Judge Wyman Yip was sworn in to the King County Superior Court bench by Presiding Judge Patrick Oishi.
Appointed to the Superior Court by Gov. Jay Inslee in December 2022, Yip replaces Judge Mafé Rajul, who left the court at the end of 2022. He will take on a civil caseload at the King County Courthouse in Seattle.
Then on Jan. 10, the Commission of the Port of Seattle made history with the elevation of Commission President Sam Cho, the first Commission President of color and the youngest Commission President in the Port’s 111 year history. Furthermore, the Port also made history with the elevation of the first female Vice President of Asian descent, with the selection of Commission Vice President Toshiko Hasegawa. This marks the first time both of the Port Commission’s top officers are of Asian descent.