Engineering consultant Albert Shen, originally considered a possible candidate for mayor, has filed to challenge one-term council member Mike O’Brien for Seattle City Council instead.
Shen, 46, is a business candidate running on a platform of creating jobs. He owns a transportation civil engineering consulting firm and participated this year in President Obama’s White House business council, meeting with senior administration officials to talk about small businesses. That got him excited about bringing ideas for job creation to the local level, he said, by running for office.
He first considered running for mayor, but decided to stay out of that competitive eight-candidate field.
“The key I want to work on is jobs,” he said. “We need a strategy for good, family-wage jobs.”
O’Brien, a Sierra Club volunteer and bike commuter, is an environmentalist. Shen said he supports the transportation work the council and mayor have done on street cars, light rail and bike infrastructure, but he’d like to work on “a bigger vision.”
“I really believe in mass transit,” he said. “What we need is more of a true vision of what is a 21st century transportation system.”