King County Councilmember Claudia Balducci is a mom, transportation and affordable housing leader, and a former public safety official. She believes that government should tackle the big issues that matter to people, notably housing, transportation and the environment. Claudia represents King County District 6 on the Eastside, and in 2022 was reelected by her colleagues to chair the King County Council for a third year.
Claudia first became active in civic life when she joined her neighbors to advocate for the revitalization of her local shopping center in the Lake Hills community of Bellevue. She went on to serve as on the Bellevue City Council, including one term as Mayor. She is a regional leader, serving as chair of the Sound Transit Board’s System Expansion Committee, president of the Puget Sound Regional Council and chair of the County’s Affordable Housing Committee.
As an elected official, Claudia has championed transportation solutions to benefit all Eastsiders, notably fighting to extend light rail from Seattle to Bellevue, Redmond and beyond. She has also advocated for improvements to major freeways, like SR 520 and I-405, as well as local arterials, regional trails and better bike lanes in Bellevue.
Affordable Housing Leader
Because runaway housing costs and homelessness are regional problems that require regional solutions, Claudia has worked with stakeholders and leaders across King County to find solutions. In 2017 and 2018 she initiated and co-chaired a Regional Affordable Housing Taskforce, which included elected representatives from the County, Seattle and other cities to develop recommendations toward a common goal of providing homes for all residents. She now chairs the Affordable Housing Committee, a regional body dedicated to implementing the Task Force recommendations. Additionally, as Mayor of Bellevue and County Councilmember, Claudia has worked with Eastside cities to create emergency shelters for men, women and families without homes.
Connecting Parks and Open Space with People
As Chair of the Budget and Fiscal Management Committee she led Council’s work on the 2020-2025 King County Parks, Recreation, Trails and Open Space Levy, which 70% of voters approved in 2019. The renewed levy makes investments across the county, including over $50.5 million to build out the new Eastrail connecting from Renton to Woodinville. It also funds open space, pools and playfields across the Eastside.
In the Community
Claudia is a strong advocate for education and the arts, supporting great organizations like KidsQuest Children's Museum, Music Works Northwest, Bellevue Youth Theater, Youth Theatre Northwest, and many more. In 2021 she secured $900,000 to help fund Together Center’s expanded human services hub to bring together more organizations and provide more services to Eastside residents. Read a selection of highlights from a busy 2021.
In 2015, Claudia was recognized as “Elected Official of the Year” by the Alliance of Eastside Agencies (Human Services) and the Washington State Democratic Party. In 2016, Claudia was inducted into the Transportation Choices Transportation Heroes Hall of Fame and, in 2019, the Puget Sound Business Journal named her the Transportation Executive of the Year.
Claudia is a graduate of Providence College and the Columbia University School of Law. She lives in Bellevue with her husband, Jim, son Victor, and adopted shelter pets Sabrina the cat and Angel the dog.