Staff Sgt. Kurt Erickson serves in my Army National Guard unit at Joint Base Lewis-McChord and has surpassed expectations as one of my leaders. As a young Hispanic female soldier, the military can be challenging for me. I often fear that male counterparts respect me less due to my femininity, but Kurt has always judged me based on merit and ability alone. He is understanding and willing to listen to those under his command.
Our generation needs to step forward and lead, and Kurt is a prime example of that motivation. He is always willing to have a conversation, and actually hear what subordinates feel is needed from a leader. Our unit is primarily linguists, from many cultures, and I am impressed with his ability to respect and navigate cultural differences.
In addition to his military leadership, I have had the pleasure of watching him interact with his daughter. He is a patient, dedicated, loving father. We need leaders who listen more than they speak. Kurt is a patient, steady voice when we need one most on the Pierce County Council.