Child and Family Well-Being Task Force


The Task Force will continually review Whatcom governmental impacts on children and families, and make specific recommendations for improvements for all departments. The Task Force will consider input from diverse families throughout Whatcom County and evidence-based and promising practices and report on and make recommendations to County Council, Executive, and other appropriate officials regarding implementation of recommendations in the Whatcom Working Toward Well-being: An Action Plan for County Government (Action Plan) as adopted on February 4, 2020.


  • The Task Force meetings the 2nd and 4th Monday of every month, 4:00-5:30 PM, through the end of August 2021. Meetings are currently held remotely. See agenda for meeting participation information.
  • Meetings are open to the public. 
  • All meetings are held in accessible locations. Sign language interpreter service, assisted listening devices and communication materials in alternative formats are available upon four (4) working days advance notice. Contact Allison Williams at
  • Attendees are not required to share their name or personal information to enter a meeting by phone. Attendees may enter “anonymous” for name and “” for email address to enter a meeting by hyperlink.


The committee has 30 members.

Fifteen of the 30 total members are permanent members appointed by their designated agency:

  • Three representatives from families selected by Generations Forward Family Council: Keith Montoya, Monica Koller, Yarrow Greer
  • One representative from Whatcom Early Learning Alliance: Vesla Tonnesson
  • One representative from Whatcom Taking Action for Children/Youth with Special Health Needs: Beverly Porter
  • One representative from School Superintendents (selected by Superintendents): Mary Sewright
  • One representative from Department of Children, Youth and Families (DCYF): Sylvia Johnson
  • One representative from the Whatcom County Health Department (selected by Health Director): Astrid Newell
  • One representative from Public Health Advisory Board (selected by PHAB): Sterling Chick
  • One member of the Whatcom County Council/Health Board: Carol Frazey
  • Whatcom County Executive or alternate: Jed Holmes
  • One representative from City of Bellingham: Samya Lutz
  • One representative from small cities (selected by the Small Cities Partnership): Gregory Hansen
  • One representative from Lummi Nation (selected by Lummi Nation): Sarah Cook
  • One representative from Nooksack Tribe (selected by Nooksack Tribe): Sativa Robertson

Fifteen of the 30 members are appointed by the County Council, and must represent at least one of the following experiences: community members from under-represented communities; community action agency, non-profit housing organization or social service agency; faith community; private school, home school, higher education or child care provider; medical and behavioral health care provider serving young children and families; community members with experience caring for children such as parent, foster parent, grandparent, or guardian; private business, corporation, or philanthropic organization.

Those members are:

  • Debbie Ahl
  • Ray Deck III
  • Jamie Desmul
  • Mike Ford
  • Mara Kelley
  • Rosalva Santos-Guzman
  • Komal Shah
  • Jennifer Wright
  • Chris Cochran
  • Escarleth De Leon
  • Urvasi Graham
  • Anne Granberg
  • Alicia Hanning
  • Melissa Isenhart
  • Brian Nelson


Term Information

  • 4-year terms, 2 term limit, one year separation required


Additional Information