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Bill Hobson: A Reflection

On March 4th, Seattle lost a great humanitarian and ally to the homeless. Bill Hobson, former director of Downtown Emergency Service Center (DESC), dedicated over 30 years of his life fighting to ensure that the most marginalized and forgotten segments of society have the resources they need to lead a quality life.

Hobson was outspoken and unwavering in his belief that stable, supportive housing forms the foundation from which people can begin to address personal challenges such as addiction and mental illness. Under his leadership, DESC helped pioneer the Housing First model, a nationally recognized approach to ending homelessness that centers on housing people as quickly as possible – and then providing services as needed.

Bellwether was fortunate to partner with Hobson and the DESC team on several projects including Aurora House, Canaday House , Kerner Scott House, the Morrison and Rainier House. “Bill was a colleague and friend. I admired and supported his consistent and uncompromising commitment to helping people who struggle with homelessness and multiple other challenges,” said Sarah Lewontin, Bellwether executive director 2004-2015.

Our thoughts and prayers are with Bill’s family, friends and the entire DESC community.

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