Virginia Bethea

A Team-oriented leader with multifaceted experience spanning community engagement, strategic marketing, consulting, philanthropy and social justice advocacy. Virginia Bethea has devoted her career to serving BIPOC communities in SE Seattle. Her passion is to bring restoration to youth who have fallen through the cracks, leveraging resources and opportunities for them to progress academically and socially.

As an accomplished individual who has used her life experiences to fight for educational justice, she has worked as an Educator for Seattle Public Schools for 33 years. During this time, she designed a senior program at a SE Seattle high school responsible for increasing graduation rates from 56% to 90% within 4 years. Her most noted achievements include community organizing and lobbying a unanimous school board vote for a newly constructed building of a SE urban high school, valued at over $230 million dollars. She gives all the credit to her faith in God.

In Bethea’s spare time, she is committed to her family while enjoying fashion and sports. Bethea and her partner founded the first cookbook to feature recipes from several mothers of NBA players called Food for the Soul (, in which they were invited and featured on the Rachel Ray show. Her philanthropic work includes raising awareness and funds for public education and HIV. Bethea is also a member of the UW President’s Minority Community Advisory Committee (MCAC). She is married to Rainier Beach High School’s legendary basketball coach, Michael Bethea, and they share a blended family of 6 children, 9 grandchildren and 1 great grandchild.