Seattle's Child

Your guide to a kid-friendly city

Mark & Lisa Rose set a high bar for their son, and for those helping him

In advocating for their son, Seattle couple have pushed the system to improve, too.

Seattle’s Child is proud to partner with the state Department of Children, Youth and Families Strengthening Families Washington to honor outstanding caregivers doing important work on behalf of children.

All month long, we’ll introduce you to Unsung Heroes from around the state: biological parents, grandparents, foster and adoptive parents. Some volunteer at local schools; some have started nonprofits; some mentor others in their communities. Enjoy their stories.


Mark & Lisa Rose, Seattle

Mark and Lisa Rose exemplify what it means to be an unsung hero through their unyielding efforts to support their multisystem-involved child who has struggled with mental-health issues and behavioral challenges.

They tirelessly advocate to make often dysfunctional systems meet the needs of their child, quickly bouncing back with renewed energy following setbacks. They do not accept closed doors or other barriers, choosing to focus their energies into exploring what is possible. They continually seek to learn about their child’s challenges and patiently work with those helping him to express himself and self-advocate.

They politely, persistently and collaboratively expect care providers (mental health and medical), state organizations and systems, and schools to work harder to provide appropriate care and support for their child. Mark and Lisa engage with care providers collaboratively, sharing their insights from facing many challenges and barriers over more many years.

Throughout our interactions the Roses communicated a deep understanding of childhood development, their child’s mental-health diagnoses, treatment history and options, school challenges and history, what has and has not worked, and hopes for their child. They actively sought our insights, perspectives and assistance, seeking to learn more about how their child adapted and grew in different environments. They demonstrate a deep love and understanding of their child’s challenges while also working to hold him appropriately accountable. Their efforts go beyond helping their child; they helped all of us improve and become better able to meet the needs of other youth with complex challenges.

Nominator: Jim Leighty


More Unsung Heroes:

Cristal Moreno stays positive despite fire and other challenges

Bellingham pair ‘a wonderful addition to the foster parenting community’

Aaron Vargas got his kids back and works hard to meet their needs



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