We are pleased to announce that we have found our new Chief Operations Officer (COO) and it’s Julie Howe, formerly our Director of Human Resources.

Julie has 30+ years of high-level public sector and nonprofit experience and has been an important member of the Executive Leadership Team of Compass Housing Alliance. She holds a law degree and has a long history working in labor & management relations.

“I never set out to become COO,” Julie said. “But once we got the funding back to reopen this position, it got me thinking about what I was already doing and what I could be doing. I love Compass. There is compassion and camaraderie unlike what I’ve known in other places where I’ve worked. This is a wonderful place and I want to add value and grow myself.”

Julie is a perfect mix of compassion and professionalism. She lives our mission and is a leader who listens. Her humor, wisdom, and dedication will help Compass grow and flourish.

Mary Steele, Compass Housing Alliance Executive Director

You can think of the COO as the right-hand person to the Executive Director. They are internally focused, and their main role is to implement the vision of the organization – from the logistical point of view of operations.

“Generally, the COO is over all the operational departments,” she said. “HR, Finance, IT, internal operations, planning, and generally keeping things on track. I’d make sure we don’t go out over our skis. I am going to be thinking about everything when it comes to how we spend our very restrictive dollars. We also need to make sure we are supporting the people who provide the service. It is about finding a balance.”

Julie came to Compass after seeing the unbalanced public response to fighting homelessness over the years.

“I’ve lived in the Seattle area for most of my life,” she said. “The disparity of people living in this community became more and more obvious. Too many people think of people living on the streets as ‘them.’ They aren’t them; they are a person. They are human beings. I wanted to do something to help people get the attention they need. We are social animals. We all need to feel connected.”

With Compass recently publishing our strategic plan, Julie is already thinking about how we are going to implement that vision.

“In this job, I’m looking forward to spending time aligning my work to our strategic plan and building up our infrastructure,” she said. “I’m also really excited about the potential for Compass to expand our services in South King County and other new communities.”

Julie raised two children in Seattle with her husband Dennis. She is also an avid hiker, loves to travel, bike, and loves dogs.

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