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Meet Jimmy Matta

Consensus Builder ● Burien’s First Latino Mayor ● Union Leader
Former Farmworker and Labor Organizer ● Burien Business Owner



Jimmy Matta was raised by migrant farmworkers from Guatemala amid the towering peaks of the Cache Valley in Preston, Idaho and the Central Washington cities of Quincy, Wenatchee and Ephrata. He too began working in the fields at the tender and impressionable age of ten.

In 1998 he came to Burien where he moved up the ranks at the United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners of America eventually serving as an international representative of the general president.


Matta served as a labor leader for 20 years and in 2016 he founded Ahora Construction, a full-service union-signatory contracting firm. He has served as a delegate for minority-owned construction firms for several years in Washington and Oregon, and was a delegate to the 2012 Democratic National Convention.

His accomplishments in social justice and labor issues span from advocacy for civil rights, democracy and broad participation in government by the people, and a strong commitment to our constitutional rights.

Matta supports many community and faith-based organizations both in the King County area and statewide that work on the following issues:

  • Women and minority-owned businesses in public contracting opportunities
  • Organized labor, family wage jobs
  • Youth development programs and support
  • Environmental justice
  • Public safety

As a union labor leader, community advocate, and organizer, Matta has long sought to build bridges between organized labor, business and our diverse communities of Washington. Matta has served as President of Carpenters Local Union 41 and President of the Pacific Northwest Regional Council of Carpenters Regional Executive Board. He is currently a regional executive board member and Vice-Chair of The Latino Civic Alliance. He has served as president of the League of United Latin American Citizens (King County) and Labor Council for Latin American Advancement (LCLAA).

Matta has served four years on Burien city council as mayor, where he has championed initiatives and issues that are important for the citizens of Burien.