Biography

Trained as a civil rights and social justice activist, Sharon Tomiko Santos was elected to the Washington State House of Representatives in 1998.

Rep. Santos’ legislative proposals reflect her strong advocacy for delivering high performing learning programs, ensuring a well-trained educator workforce, and eliminating educational inequities.  She believes Washington state must provide excellence and opportunity to each and every student, giving them the tools they need to thrive in school and succeed in life.

In addition to education, her key policy interests include civil rights, women’s rights, economic and environmental justice, affordable housing, and community preservation.  She strives to level playing fields and to enable every Washingtonian to be safe, be productive, and be successful.

Rep. Santos chairs the House Education committee and serves on the House Capital Budget committee and Consumer Protection & Business committee.  She also serves appointments to the Washington State Education Opportunity Gap Accountability and Oversight committee, the Legislative Oral History committee, and the Public Stadium Authority advisory committee.

Rep. Santos is committed to community service and has served on the boards of many local and national organizations including the Boys and Girls Clubs of King County, the National Asian Pacific American Women’s Forum, and the University of Washington Business and Economic Development Program Board of Ambassadors.

A graduate of the Evergreen State College and of Northeastern University, Rep. Santos has worked in the banking industry, on staff to local public elected officials, and in senior management positions for non-profit organizations.

HONORS
2022 Inductee, Franklin High School Alumni Association Hall of Fame
2019 Champions for Children Award, Children’s Alliance
2019 Legislative Leadership Award, Martin Luther King Coordinating Committee
2017 Joseph Albert Dear Distinguished Alumna Award, The Evergreen State College
2017 Lifetime Achievement Award, Northwest Asian Weekly Foundation
2017 Leadership in Sustainability Award, InterIm Community Development Association
2016 Lifetime Community Achievement Award, New Beginnings Christian Fellowship Church
2016 All Star Award, Washington School Counselors Association
2014 Community Leadership Award, Filipino Community of Seattle
2013 Pioneer Award, Digital Public Schools
2012 Bridging the Gap Award, University of Washington, Multicultural Alumni Partnership
2012 Torch of Leadership Award, Association of Washington School Principals
2011 Legislator of the Year, Washington Career Technical Education, Family and Consumer Science Division
2010 Honoree, 100 Pioneering Women, The Women’s Center at the University of Washington
2010 Kip Tokuda Community Leadership Award, Asian Pacific Islander Community Leadership Foundation
2010 Multicultural Excellence Award, Washington State Association for Multicultural Education