Letter to the Editor: Retain Markstrom for Port of Centralia Commission


I met Kyle Markstrom when he was 15 years old when he had the courage to come to our house to ask our permission to date our daughter. The young man that I met was already deeply connected to this community, he had several part time jobs and was well mannered and pleasantly confident. Needless to say, we gave our permission and he became a permanent member of our family when he married our daughter. I have had the esteemed privilege of watching him grow into a loving, devoted husband and father, community servant and a highly skilled businessman.

I watched as he started his career in a low-level entry position at his current employer and worked his way to his current role of director of engineering. I watched as he and his beloved bride faced the most significant challenge and loss that any parent could endure with grace, hope and courage.

His response to difficulty and loss was to serve. He dove into using his business acumen to serve the Centralia schools as a volunteer on committees and knocking on doors to promote the school levy. He started a foundation in the honor of his son to serve pediatric care providers. These are just two examples of how Kyle has put words into action for the good of others.

That says a lot about a man. It indicates that he is not self-focused. It says that the greater good is what matters. It says that looking to the future and not the past is a pathway to healing and growth.

During his time on the port commission, he has shown that he is a thoughtful and independent voice of the people of this community. He wants what is best for the collective whole. His supporters are a diverse cross section of individuals and small businesses that have seen what is possible when a driven, competent and compassionate leader is at the forefront of a public organization. He has no axe to grind and no special interest group to serve. He is looking into the future and not the past to make the Port of Centralia a hub of family wage jobs, a revenue source for our community services, and healthy economic growth in Centralia.

It is pretty clear that my love for this man may create some bias but when you look at the facts, you will see that Kyle Markstrom is the correct choice for the Centralia Port Commission. Please join me in retaining him on the commission for the good of our community!


Kirk Parnham


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