Our children need a highly experienced educator to work for their best interest on the school board.

As a University professor and a mother of three boys, I am passionate about creating a distinctive education experience on Mercer Island that nurtures each child’s mind and heart.

To me, student success goes beyond traditional measures such as GPA and standardized testing. Student success means that students’ uniqueness and differences are embraced and supported in a safe learning community. Student success means that students can connect what they’re learning to larger purposes and in service of community and humanity.

Students with such an education are independent, driven and creative, ready for the rigor of higher education, and equipped to find fresh solutions to our most pressing and complex problems, locally and globally.

I believe my education, mental health expertise, and advocacy background would be an asset on the School Board to help address the increasingly complex needs of our growing, diverse student population. I hope to use this experience to help build a safe and supportive learning culture that ensures our students thrive in school and beyond.

Tam Dinh, Ph.D., LICSW
Associate Professor/Bachelor of Social Work Program Director

Curriculum Vitae HERE

Vision & Values

Education should be based on values and needs of students. Based on evidence-based research literature, to prepare our children to thrive in their personal and professional lives, our children need:


My Journey

Service to community is the foundation of my personal, professional, and community life, which is deeply informed by my experience in receiving support and education as a 7-year-old Vietnamese refugee growing up in Boise, Idaho.


Michael Butler, Ph.D.

"Dr. Tam Dinh is a beacon of hope in the Pacific Northwest, a fair-minded and community-oriented voice for social justice and the general welfare of the diverse communities to which she belongs."

Lori Sirs, DSW, LICSW

"She does this seemingly effortlessly, as she challenges them, awakens their curiosity, and helps them see that they can make their world a kinder, more just place, one person, one courageous act a time."

Katya Shkurkin, Ph.D., LICSW

"Without her energy, vision and excellent writing and administrative skills, we would never had gotten our program accredited."

Johnson Nguyen

"Conducting research under Dr. Tam Dinh was a pivotal moment in my career. She not only coached myself and two other research assistants on culturally responsive qualitative research methods, but acted as a springboard to a career in public service."

Antonia Aukusitino

"She has inspired me to dream big as well as guides me to fulfill those dreams. Using her wisdom and experience she leads a classroom with a down to earth and realistic understanding of the world. She has changed my life and helped me find my voice as well as confidence in myself."

Garret Jones

"With the encouragement and mentorship of Dr. Dinh, and the guidance from her social work program that holds space for freedom of expression and social connection, I found passion, compassion, and most importantly, my life’s purpose."

Andres Perez

"Dr. Dinh started me on a path to achieve things I never believed I was capable of, and she saw me cross the finish line."

Jase Kugiya

"Prior to knowing Dr. Dinh, I was a confused student who was not aware of my potential. Since then, Dr. Dinh has become a mentor for me and helped me to realize my inner strengths."

Come join the movement to shape a distinctive and world class education experience on Mercer Island that nurtures each child's mind and heart.