Tacoma Housing Authority (THA) Executive Director Michael Mirra received an honorary Doctor of Laws degree at University of Puget Sound’s 127th Commencement Ceremony on Sunday, May 19. Mirra, who has led THA since 2004, is recognized nationally and locally for creating innovative partnerships to improve housing for Tacoma's low-income community.
“Mr. Mirra is a lifelong advocate for equal justice before the law, for fair housing, and for the betterment of the human condition,” said Puget Sound President Isiaah Crawford. “He is a visionary and dynamic leader, and it is our great privilege to honor him in this way.”
Highlights of Mirra’s tenure at THA include leading multimillion-dollar transformations of the Salishan and Bay Terrace communities. Recently, he has overseen the development of housing options for unsheltered students enrolled at University of Washington Tacoma and Tacoma Community College.
Prior to becoming executive director of THA, Mirra spent more than 20 years as an attorney advocating for child welfare, fair housing, and just landlord-tenant laws. During the ’90s, he successfully litigated on behalf of homeless families and poor neighborhoods in several high-profile cases, including Washington State Coalition for the Homeless v. the Department of Social and Health Services, decided by the state Supreme Court.