Aaron Barna

Lillian’s work across child-serving systems gives her a deep appreciation and understanding for all human services. Her professional background includes serving as the Clinical Director of the Tri-Cty Mental Health Center in Missouri, Regional Coordinator for the Illinois State Board of Education, Education Advisor for the Department of Children and Family Services, and Director and Founder of the Comunidad Unida Project, a center for Latino families and youth.

She represents the 21st Legislative District, and serves on the House Early Childhood and Human Services Committee, as well as on the Education; Transportation; and Rules Committees. She has been a member of the state’s Educational Opportunity Gap Oversight and Accountability Committee for over six years and serves as Deputy Chair of the House Democratic Caucus.

Nationally, Lillian serves on the National Council of State Legislators’ Education Committee, as well as the Opportunity Gap Committee. She is also on the Executive Committee of the National Hispanic Caucus of State Legislators.

Lillian, who holds a Masters in Public Administration and a Masters in Counseling from Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa, currently works in the Everett Public School District as a mental health and school counselor.

Lillian has three children, Leanna, who graduated from Columbia University in Chicago, Tyler, who is studying engineering at WSU, and Kayla, a freshman at Hamilton College in New York.

Awards:Washington School Counselor Association, School Counselor Advocacy All-Stars

KSER Voice of the Community, Community Leader Award

NW ASIAN WEEKLY, Women of Power in Education Award




We asked Lillian to tell us a little bit more about herself and her new position under the Capitol Dome:


Q: What inspired you to run for office?

LO-S: I wanted to use my direct experience across child-serving systems to impact the policies and legislation that affect our children and families.

Q: How do your committee assignments fit you and the 21st Legislative District?

LO-S: I believe in a holistic approach to meeting the needs of our children and families, some of which includes education, human services, transportation, and environmental issues. These committees deal with legislation that effects our families’ quality of life and I am excited to represent my constituents on these committees.

Q: Is there a moment you’ll remember most from your first day as a lawmaker?

LO-S: Bringing the map of the 21st Legislative district into my office was a memorable moment for me. I felt the seriousness of the responsibility on my shoulders to assure that my families’ voices are well represented.

Q: If you could pass any legislation, what problem would you fix?

LO-S: I want to continue to fight for academic success for all students. Our graduation rates across the state are not acceptable. We cannot continue to lose our most precious resources, our children. I want to make sure our educational system works for all, including preparing students for the jobs of the future in science, math and technology, as well as career and technical education programs and apprenticeships for students who do not want to go to college.

Q: If we peeked at your iPod, who would we see?

LO-S: An eclectic variety. Everything from McLemore, Bruno Mars, Alicia Keys and Adele, to salsa music, and musicals from In the Heights to Les Misérables.

Q: What is your preferred communication technique with social media?

LO-S: I don’t know that I have a favorite technique, but I mostly use Facebook.