Running for council position #4, meet Ellyn Saunders


LFP Town Crier endorses Ellyn Saunders for LFP City Council Position 4. Her candidate statement is below. Read on to find out more about one of LFP's legacy families:

Dear fellow Lake Forest Park residents,

I have been a registered nurse for nearly 25 years and a mom for nearly 20. I've been immersed in these two areas of my life and am now entering a new phase of caring and involvement.

As your council member, I will use my experience and passion from my job and role as a nurse and mom to help build effective regional partnerships that benefit our city. I will be a strong voice for safer roads and parks for our citizens and preserve and manage our city’s vision for clean and healthy air and water.

I have heard deep concern from many residents about the soaring prices of homes and how we can afford to live here in the future. I will collaborate with local officials and housing experts to help find affordable solutions so all citizens can find safe, affordable, and equitable housing.

I am running for city council because of my respect, love, and passion for my community and the people who live in our fantastic city. If elected, I will make it my priority to not only be present within the community, I will also listen to your ideas and concerns and be a strong and effective voice, be your representative to the city government and especially to our region and state. These are strengths I have demonstrated throughout my career and I am eager to bring them to benefit the residents of a city I am proud to call home.

During my career, it has always been a privilege to advocate for patients, assisting them to achieve goals and better quality of life. I hope that you and the voters of Lake Forest Park will allow me the opportunity to represent you, be your advocate, and to help meet the goals and visions for our beautiful city.

Meet the Saunders':

Why did you want to move to LFP?

My husband, Brian, was raised in LFP, along with his 3 brothers. We love LFP and moved our little family here in 2006. We wanted to raise our children in LFP, so they could attend the highly acclaimed Shoreline Schools and be raised with the experience of a loving, safe, and supportive community.

Do you have relatives in the area?

The Saunders family just keeps growing in LFP! If you include all the extended family, there are at least 25 of us! The Saunders family has been avidly involved in the LFP community and parks. For instance, Brian’s brother, Rich Saunders, served on the LFP Planning Committee. His wife, Polly, is an ongoing and active volunteer and supporter of various organizations such as 5 Acre Woods Park, Stewardship Foundation, Grace Cole Park work parties, etc. Brothers Jay and Mike and Mike’s wife Kammie have also been active in the community, schools, arts, and fundraisers (I.e., Pink Polka Dots). This is just to name a few.

What are some of your passions?

My happiest moments/passions/hobbies are gardening, hiking, long walks with our family and dogs, dinners, and events with the entire Saunders family! I enjoy anything that involves being outdoors, whether on the beach or in the mountains. I enjoy local fun runs to raise money for charity. It keeps me active and in shape and helps raise money for local organizations I care deeply about.

What was it like working through the pandemic as a nurse?

I have been an RN for nearly 25 years, and I’ve never witnessed such events as I did during the pandemic. My entire life at work was turned upside down, inside out; everything I knew, all the day-to-day knowledge and practice I felt secure with, was gone. Policies, protocols, procedures, and how we cared for patients were changing every minute of every day, and it was crushing and disheartening at times. But, I work with a fantastic group of professionals, and we pulled together and lifted up one another and overcame the most challenging time in our career.

There were many challenges, but I would say the biggest challenge was keeping everyone safe and educating those who didn’t understand how severe and different this virus was. And the healthcare professionals working directly with the covid patients who were isolated and suffering.

Tell us about your adoption journey...

We traveled to Russia in the Spring of 2004, and after spending nearly 1 month in the country, we brought home 2 very tiny 8-month-old twins (one boy and one girl). Changed our lives for the better, forever. Going from having no kids to having 8-month-old TWINS was the hardest thing ever. It’s still hard, as any parent will tell you (especially with twins), like you know, Chris, having twin boys yourself ;). They graduated from Shorecrest High School and are both in college. Our son’s primary interest at this point in his schooling is medicine, like his Grandfather, David Saunders, and his uncle, Mike Saunders. Our daughter enjoys the beauty and cosmetology industry and will start a new program this Fall. They both are happy, healthy, unique human beings.

Brian and I have been married 23 years (this weekend actually is our 23rd anniversary!) We married at the LFP Civic Club, surrounded by our family and friends! Brian is a Marine Biologist teaching college-level science courses for nearly 30 years. Brian is passionate about anything related to nature, the environment, and climate and improving our practice as earth stewards.

Editor's note: thank you for sharing, Ellyn, we wish you the best of luck with your candidacy!

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