Heidi Wills has made an enormous difference in my life. Growing up, I was a shy and self-conscious child who felt like I would never fit in with my peers. When Heidi served as Executive Director of the First Tee of Greater Seattle she took me under her wing, mentored, and helped instill confidence in me, and other youth in the program. The way she was able to connect with Board members, staff, coaches, participants, and families alike was amazing. She has the ability to make everyone feel incredibly special and like she has known us forever. As a child, I looked up to her and hoped to make a difference someday as she did.
As the third Executive Director of the First Tee of Greater Seattle, Heidi grew the program in a way I never could have imagined. From the program’s humble beginnings in a trailer park based out of Jefferson Park Golf Course on Seattle’s Beacon Hill, Heidi leveraged her personal connections, enthusiasm, and passion for serving the community to expand the First Tee to reach youth all over Greater King County and even in Pierce County. Under Heidi’s leadership, the First Tee formed partnerships with local juvenile detention centers and local schools to outreach to and mentor underprivileged and marginalized youth in need of guidance. Leading by example, Heidi guided the First Tee to become a home and safe space for participants of all ages to learn and grow together, mentor others, gain volunteer and coaching experience, and make lifelong, lasting friendships. Although I haven’t been a participant of the First Tee of Greater Seattle in almost a decade, I still consider the First Tee my family. I keep in contact with friends and coaches I met through the program and grew up with, and know that I can rely on the First Tee to be there for me, as it always has been.
Heidi’s has inspired me to pursue a life of service and giving back to the Greater Seattle community. She is experienced in leadership, working with youth, and Seattle politics. I believe that Heidi’s knowledge of, and experience with, advocating for youth will be beneficial as a member of City Council. Investing in the youth of today will help shape Seattle’s tomorrow. Because of this and more, I heavily endorse Heidi Wills for Seattle City Council.