2 new REAC members appointed by council

Two new members were recently appointed to the Race Equity Advisory Committee by the Bainbridge Island City Council.

Renni Bispham will serve Position 8 and Jing Fong will serve Position 9, both for a three-year term expiring in June 2024. Both positions are add-ons to the committee, going from seven members to nine members.

According to candidate applications, Bispham is of African and South American descent, serving as the director of human resources for the University of Washington, School of Dentistry. Bispham’s related experience includes the city of Seattle Race and Social Justice Initiative Training, various workshops as an educator, and 20-plus years of work in human resources. Locally, Bispham has been involved with BI Roller Hockey as a parent, coach and board member.

Fong’s application states she is a self-employed consultant who has served on various city groups such as the BI School District Multicultural Advisory Council, Bainbridge Roller Hockey League board and the BI-Kitezh board. Fong’s related experiences include Courageous Conversation: Beyond Diversity (2019, Pacific Educational Group) and Cultural Committee, YES! Media (foundational member, addressing cultural issues, policies and procedures). Fong has organized many events about Japanese exclusion and incarceration and to march against hate and in solidarity over the vandalized Jewish section of the Port Blakely Cemetery and other hate crimes.

A call for participation was issued for volunteers to serve on the REAC, and a series of interviews were conducted among seven candidates. The other five candidates were Olivia Hall, Laura Henry, Clarissa San Diego, Judith Tingley and Vanesa Young.