Six Extra-Interesting Things to Know About Gordon McHenry, Jr., Our New Leader
Gordon McHenry, Jr. is the choice as United Way of King County’s new CEO.
If you want a deep dive on why he’s such a terrific pick, read our press release. This post is for facts that are maybe more interesting, and often more fun! (Thanks to Parent Map for unearthing some of what follows when they named him one of their annual superheroes)
He’s a Seattle native.
They exist! He grew up on Beacon Hill in a then-phenomenally diverse neighborhood: people not just of different races, but other classes. His dad, pictured with Gordon Jr. below, was the first black engineer promoted into Boeing management.
He’s a husband and a dad.
His wife, Dorina, is an exec with the Boys and Girls Clubs of King County. His children, all thriving young adults, are Mariesa, Alexander and Austin.
He was a Boy Scout.
His troop number: 14. It instilled in him a lifelong love of hiking and the outdoors. So, too, his fellow Scout and still-friend, Glenn Nelson. The son of a Japanese immigrant, Glenn recalls that when Gordon and he enrolled together at Seattle U., they virtually had to drag other students of color out on weekend hikes.
He has personal heroes.
Top of mind for Gordon are Nelson Mandela, Benigno Aquino, Martin Luther King Jr., Mahatma Gandhi, and his (deceased) father, the first Gordon McHenry. Says Gordon Jr.: “I respect my heroes for their courage, ability to inspire others to act for the greater good, and selflessness in the face of physical danger, emotional duress or being perceived as unpopular.”
There’s a quality that he most admires most in others.
“Curiosity; a sincere interest and desire to learn from others.”
He’s a reader.
Two titles he’s found memorable: The Big Burn: Teddy Roosevelt and the Fire that Saved America by Timothy Egan and America’s Hidden History: Untold Tales of the First Pilgrims, Fighting Women, and Forgotten Founders Who Shaped a Nation by Kenneth Davis.