Austin is the first out LGBTQ woman elected to the Anchorage Assembly
Austin lives in Anchorage and has served on the Assembly since 2018. Austin is the first LGBTQ woman to be elected to the Anchorage Assembly. She co-chairs the Assembly’s Health Policy Committee and successfully led the unanimous adoption of a Tobacco 21 ordinance, raising the legal age to buy tobacco products from 19 to 21. The federal government soon followed suit and made this change nationwide. She also co-chairs the Assembly’s Budget Committee and led the Assembly’s response to the nationally-recognized destructive state budget proposed by Alaska’s Governor. During her short tenure on the Assembly, Austin also led the effort to change FEMA standards to allow Anchorage residents to receive FEMA aid to repair damage at their homes after the November 2018 earthquake. She is a strong supporter of Anchorage’s recently-adopted Climate Action Plan.
Austin was raised in a remote logging town by working class parents and got a law degree from UC Davis. Her background inspired in her a strong interest in both the environment and class and equity. As a law student she worked for UC Davis’s Civil Rights Clinic, and since then has worked for a private law firm developing renewable wind farms, as in-house counsel to the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency, as a federal law clerk, and most recently as the Legal Affairs Director at a land trust. She is married to Stephanie Quinn-Davidson. She and Stephanie and their two dogs enjoy hiking and exploring all Alaska has to offer.