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Kelly Wicker - Director

Kelly Wicker

Kelly is a fourth generation Washingtonian and Japanese American from Olympia, Washington. She is an only-child, raised by a single mom who instilled the values of service, hard work, and always doing “what makes you happy”. Those values have driven her 25 years of service as a government and political executive leading + advising high performing leaders and their teams, navigating a wide array of issues + systems, and resolving complex state matters. Her experience includes successfully working and managing five competitive statewide political campaigns, in addition to working at various levels of government for three governors and a United States Senator.

Kelly has worked with Governor Inslee since 2012, and has been a member of his executive team since January 2013 when he was sworn in. Currently she serves as the Deputy Chief of Staff and in this role helps navigate the daily work and challenges of not just the governor’s office, but of the executive branch. As a member of the executive team Kelly helps to advance the governor’s agenda and the state’s best interest in a multitude of issues. She also provides guidance and assists in the operations, budget and personnel matters of over 50 state agencies and over 250 boards and commissions.

In her spare time you will find Kelly spending time with family + friends, traveling the world, and honing her skills in a variety of new hobbies she picked up during the pandemic: gardening, sewing, and cycling.



Kate Sowers - Staff

Kate Sowers joined the Washington State Women’s Commission team in January 2021.

Previously, she served as Development Coordinator for YWCA Spokane, building and maintaining relationships with community partners to fund the agency's vital programs and services for women and families in support of their mission to Eliminate Racism and Empower Women. Before that, she worked for World Vision's East Africa Regional Office researching the effects of conflict on the well-being of children.

Kate is passionate about addressing the intersectional challenges faced by women in Washington and committed to seeing that the voices of her fellow Washingtonian women are heard and represented. She holds a B.A. in Peace Studies from Whitworth University.

Leah White - Staff

Leah White joined the Washington State Women’s Commission in April of 2022.

Before moving to Washington State, Leah was a Legislative Policy advocate and then State Affairs Intern with the Alzheimer's Association - Tennessee Chapter. Her time was spend advocating for Alzheimer's-centered policies and educating Legislators and the public on how the disease as well as caregiving responsibilities disproportionately impact women, especially women of color.

Since completing her degree, she served as the Legislative Policy Fellow for the Women’s Commission where she worked to inform the legislature on domestic violence protection orders by compiling the voices and stories of women, domestic violence survivors, advocates, and legal aid attorneys. She left the Commission briefly to work for the Washington State Senate as a Committee Assistant for the Labor, Commerce, and Tribal Affairs committee during the 2022 Legislative Session.

She is thrilled to be back at the Women’s Commission where she can pursue her passion for addressing the challenges facing women and girls, working to ensure an equitable future for all. She holds a B.S. in Political Science with a focus in Legal Studies from Southern New Hampshire University.