The judge asked for a picture of Scott Siemers. Not for legal reasons, but to celebrate his graduation from the treatment program that successfully reunited Siemers with his three-year-old daughter and fiance. It was a good day, and Siemers ended it by getting married.
Siemers has stayed sober since and, in June, his dedication to a sparkling downtown earned him recognition as 2018 DSA/MID Clean Team Employee of the Year.
The recognition coincides with the first anniversary of Siemers’ hiring. Prior to joining the Clean Team, he was living in transitional housing in Maple Valley and struggling to find work. A fellow resident told him about the Metropolitan Improvement District. Siemers interviewed on June 20, 2017, and was hired on the spot.
Coworkers say Siemers is a joy to work with, crediting his sound decisions, professionalism and skill training new team members. MID ratepayers and DSA members praise his customer service and consistent, quality work.
After joining the maintenance department, Siemers worked his way to field supervisor and lead ambassador – promotions that make sense when you learn about his management experience directing food and beverage services at Marriott hotels and as executive chef at Bellevue’s Hilton Hotel.
What does he think about the change from hospitality and fancy food?
“I feel more at home here than in any job I’ve ever had,” Siemers says. “There’s so much positivity here. Lots of people are trying to improve their lives; it’s like a family.”
Downtown ambassadors are on the sidewalks and streets every day, and they often interact with those experiencing homelessness and struggles with addiction. For Siemers, it’s a reminder of where he was and what he once faced.
Says Siemers, “It helps keep me sober. That’s my old life. I don’t want to go back.”
Days off are all about family. He often hikes, fishes and enjoys nearby trails with his wife and now six-year-old daughter. Tiger Mountain is a favorite route.
“Everywhere I go I try to work hard,” Siemers says. “I feel blessed by God every day. I do the best that I can and have a great attitude.”
And the family photo snapped on graduation day? It’s still hanging in the King County courthouse.
Learn More About Downtown Ambassadors