Jeff Stilwell came to politics early. His first campaign was Jimmy Carter’s in 1976. He was nine. Carter’s campaign advance man came to stay with Jeff’s family and taught him to doorbell on what would later become Jeff’s paper route. At the time, however, the politico bought Jeff a chocolate eclair to encourage him. Jeff was hooked.
Since then, his life has gone in many directions. After graduating from a public school in Wisconsin with degrees in Political Science and International Studies, Jeff was determined to better understand his love of the wider world. He taught English in Taiwan for four years and traveled all over Asia while simultaneously studying the martial arts and sword fighting. He hiked the heights of the Himalayas, explored the fragrant scents of Thailand, and proposed to his wife, Manya, in steamy Java. Upon returning to the US, Manya taught him to gallop bareback in the storied Yakima Valley of Washington, just outside her family farm. This became the site of his first novel, Fighting for Eden, a story about fighting for your dreams.
While pursuing a successful career in computer programming in Seattle, Jeff explored his taste for the metaphysical by going to Seminary at Seattle University, a venture which culminated in his seminal illustrated work, Here and Now: A Whimsical Take On God.
In 2000, Manya and Jeff opened their own small business, MaJe Gallery, in Edmonds, Washington, just north of Seattle. The gallery is now entering its 20th year. Along the way, they created a public arts scene which helped save the downtown of Edmonds from the Great Recession. Jeff’s skill at bringing disparate people together was key to creating that public arts scene that brought businesses, artists and the public together for the benefit of all. It culminated in one of the largest Art Walks in the Pacific Northwest, a highly valued collection of murals, and a live music scene on Friday nights where Jeff performed stand up comedy to fill the seats between sets.
Jeff’s perpetual love of politics led to a series of over sixty iconoclastic comedy videos castigating our lackluster political and religious leaders. His second novel, Toni’s Smile, celebrates his love of our American experiment in a representative democracy.
Jeff, a happy warrior by instinct, realized not too long ago that we are engaged in a fight for the soul of this nation. We either become a nation of racist misogynists as Donald Trump wants us to be, or we become a country where We The People come together by helping one another.
Thus, knowing how cruel and mean Trump can be, and looking at all the Democratic candidates and how sweet and gentle they are, Jeff came to the conclusion that Trump will take them down. This country cannot withstand another four years of his outrages. This country needs a happy warrior to take Trump down. That fighter is Jeff Stilwell.