Dylan Kling

Age: 30

Counselor, Quincy High School, and elected Quincy City Councilman

Dylan Kling is giving back to the Quincy community through both career — currently as a counselor at Quincy High School — and civic duty — serving on the city’s planning commission from 2016 through 2019 and currently as an elected member of the city council.

He graduated from Quincy High School in 2009 and earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Eastern Washington University in 2014. He worked as the Gear Up site director in Quincy, helping students explore educational opportunities ranging from tech school to four-year colleges. He has five years on the board, (with three of those as president) of the Quincy Partnership for Youth, a nonprofit designed to foster a healthy, drug-free community through activities and prevention and intervention programs.

What challenges do you see ahead, and what do you believe needs to be done to get prepared?

I think for my community it’s about trying to make the best decisions that will help set our community up for the future. From infrastructure and activities to diversifying our community economically and culturally all while still staying true to our roots. It’s a delicate balancing act and making sure we have community involvement and the best resources to make sure our community is a better place for the next generation of Quincy residents.

Some of the biggest challenges in education is getting students identified and connected to services. My position works with students who suffer from substance use and abuse issues but with COVID it’s been extremely difficult to identify these students and get them to the resources that they need. We don’t know the full extent to this problem yet and won’t know for some time.

I think the best thing to do is talk to and form connections with all the agencies in the area so once a youth is identified we can streamline the process to help these individuals get the help they need.