Our Team

The Route 21 Team

Rick and Rebecca Newell spent 10 years building a very similar near-peer paid mentoring model called M.U.S.T., which serves the most underserved and vulnerable black American males in Seattle Public Schools and has proven to be highly successful and effective. Rick and Rebecca always wanted the leadership of M.U.S.T. to reflect the population that it serves so over the years they identified good leaders then train and empowered that leadership.  In December of 2021 they handed the organization over and they stepped away from M.U.S.T.

The very first M.U.S.T. cohort had a young man who was in foster care. Rick and Rebecca’s experiences with him built a growing passion to use what they have learned through M.U.S.T. to help youth in foster care with the same near-peer paid mentoring model.

Prior to working in non-profits, Rick had a career in computers working at companies like Microsoft, Sun Microsystems and Cingular. Rick and Rebecca have four awesome sons and live in south Seattle.

Our Board

Rick Newell
Route 21, Executive Director

Addison Parker
Fortis Accounting Solutions, Partner

Casey Bui
Windermere, Managing Broker

Mark Canlis 
Canlis Restaurant, Owner

Larisa Kaukonen
Evergreen Emergency Services, Emergency Physician


Advisory Board

Katie Buxton
Research Fellow – Policy and Strategic Planning

Fernando Clara
Director of Practice Innovation
The Mockingbird Society

Sarah Desjarlais
Executive Director

Nate Hawkins
West Regional Director

Baron Li

Emily Stochel
Program Manager of Government Relations & Advocacy
College Success Foundation