April’s Short Bio
Upon graduating from WWU with a master’s degree, I was fortunate to find love, opportunity and acceptance in Bellingham and have made it my home for nearly two decades. I’m continually inspired by the natural beauty of this region; as your elected representative, I have found it my charge to protect that beauty and ensure all have access to it. As a substitute educator in the public schools and an elected official, I am reminded daily of the inequities in our community and that not everyone experiences love, opportunity and acceptance in Bellingham. It’s my deepest commitment and passion to learn from and acknowledge our twisted and gnarled past and how it has informed the policies and land use of today. I’m inspired daily by my own children and youth in our community to “just keep swimming” in the direction of a just, inclusive and sustainable community and, by all means always, “smile and wave.”
Council Committee, Board and Liaison Roles
I serve as the Chair of the Planning and Community Development Committee and am a member of the Justice Committee the Finance and Public Works Committee for City Council and the Franchise and Accessibility Technology Committee. I serve as a liaison to the Sustainable Connections Board and the Library Board of Trustees. I serve on the Whatcom Transportation Authority Board, Bellingham International Airport Advisory Committee and Amigos de Birchwood Board. I’m a member of the community group for the Birchwood International Market. I serve as a committee member of the Attendance Areas PreK-12 Standing Committee for Bellingham Public Schools, and the Community Truancy Board. I am also a 2018-2019 Community Engagement Fellow.
Click the following link watch an interview with April on Bellingham Voices. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a4OO-Kjv1-g
April Barker moved to Bellingham in 1999 to attend Western Washington University’s Graduate Program. Upon completion of her Master’s Degree, she married Jason Barker, who is a teacher at Nooksack Middle School. The Barkers started their family in the Columbia neighborhood, then relocated to the Birchwood Neighborhood where they could work toward their goal of sustainable living. Jason enjoys tending to the garden and chickens while April works with the neighborhoods to build community and a sense of place for all. April served as President of the Birchwood Neighborhood Association for three years. Over the past several years, she has worked on city, port, and public education committees and developed partnerships across a variety of organizations.
“I have lived in ten amazing cities, but none as captivating and brilliant as Bellingham,” April said. “Our family has deeply-rooted connections and a great love for this city. I am passionate about working toward smart growth, creating affordable housing and encouraging a robust economy, all while keeping an eye on equity and safeguarding the environment that the people of Bellingham value.”
April has worked toward neighborhood revitalization by directly addressing difficult issues such as homelessness and neighborhood safety. She has demonstrated a unique ability to motivate others to rally behind a cause and has helped create a strong sense of community.
April holds a Master’s Degree in human movement and performance with an emphasis in sports psychology from Western Washington. She is also a substitute teacher for Bellingham Public Schools. Together, April and her husband manage their three Bellingham rentals. They have two children.
Site photo credits:
Galbraith Mountain, April Barker
Sunset with Kids, April Barker