Most Influential People

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Seattle magazine’s Most Influential People of 2021

These innovators took bold actions and big risks during a trying year. From the arts to civic engagement to business, here's a look at those who made a measurable difference across the state in 2021.

Linda Derschang; Black Coffee Northwest owners Erwin and Darnesha Weary; Jon Scholes; Michael Greer; Pallavi Mehta Wahi; Seena Mortazavi; Susanna Ryan; John Tomkowiak; Vivian Hua

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25 Most Influential People in Seattle 2020

These innovators took bold actions and big risks during a trying year

First, Laura Clise; Second, Omari Salisbury; Third, Chris Murray; Fourth, Colleen Echohawk

Seattle Skyline

Movers & Shakers: Seattle’s Most Influential People of the Year 2019

Meet this year’s class of our Most Influential People: 35 Seattleites who are altering the fabric of our city

This article appears in print in the November 2019 issue, as part of the Most Influential People of the Year feature. Click here to subscribe. We are the crane capital of the country, and that means we are still growing at an astonishing—and sometimes unnerving—rate. With exceptional growth come exceptional people, and we celebrate them here. These luminaries help elevate…

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Seattle’s Most Influential People 2019: ‘Seattle Times’ Reporter, Dominic Gates

As a reporter on the aerospace beat, Gates extensively covers the Boeing 737 MAX crisis

This article appears in print in the November 2019 issue, as part of the Most Influential People of the Year feature. Click here to subscribe. Where were you when Boeing’s bad news—that the corporation had ignored flaws in its 737 Max system, which resulted in two international plane crashes in five months—broke this year? It’s likely that many of those…

Governor Jay Inslee

Seattle’s Most Influential People 2019: Gov. Jay Inslee, US Rep. Pramila Jayapal, Judge James Robart, Ryan Vancil

From climate change to police accountability, these four public officials are bring important issues to the spotlight

This article appears in print in the November 2019 issue, as part of the Most Influential People of the Year feature. Click here to subscribe. As the first major presidential candidate from Washington state since Scoop Jackson ran in 1976, Governor Jay Inslee took his seat on the national stage, while the state basked in reflected glory. Although he dropped…

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Seattle’s Most Influential People 2019: Recompose Founder, Katrina Spade

Spade's company will be doing the composting work once the Washington state human composting law goes into effect in May 2020

This article appears in print in the November 2019 issue, as part of the Most Influential People of the Year feature. Click here to subscribe. People across the country did a collective double take when Governor Jay Inslee signed legislation in May that would make Washington state the first in the country to allow human composting, effective starting in May…

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Seattle’s Most Influential People 2019: Singer-songwriter, Brandi Carlile

On top of her Grammy wins, Carlile is the cofounder of the Looking Out Foundation, which funds humanitarian causes

This article appears in print in the November 2019 issue, as part of the Most Influential People of the Year feature. Click here to subscribe. The six Grammy nominations and three wins Brandi Carlile earned for 2018’s By the Way, I Forgive You proved that, finally, the rest of the country loves the Ravensdale native as much as we Washingtonians…

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Seattle’s Most Influential People 2019: Arts Education Advocate, Lara Davis

The Creative Advantage has doubled the number of music and visual arts programs in Seattle elementary schools

This article appears in print in the November 2019 issue, as part of the Most Influential People of the Year feature. Click here to subscribe. Lara Davis, former Youth Arts Manager for Seattle’s Office of Arts & Culture (she left the position in August), has been the driving force behind The Creative Advantage, a citywide initiative between Seattle Public Schools,…

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Seattle’s Most Influential People 2019: HistoryLink Executive Director and Cofounder, Marie McCaffrey

HistoryLink celebrated its 20th anniversary this year

This article appears in print in the November 2019 issue, as part of the Most Influential People of the Year feature. Click here to subscribe. HistoryLink, the first online encyclopedia of regional history, would have been a book if it wasn’t for executive director and cofounder Marie McCaffrey. McCaffrey founded the website covering Seattle and King County history with her…

Aidan Lang

Seattle’s Most Influential People 2019: Former General Director of the Seattle Opera, Aidan Lang

During his five-year tenure, Lang helped grow the opera's audience, especially with younger crowds

This article appears in print in the November 2019 issue, as part of the Most Influential People of the Year feature. Click here to subscribe. Aidan Lang served as Seattle Opera’s general director for just five years prior to joining the Welsh National Opera, but he left a legacy that promises to set the tone for generations of opera fans. During…

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Seattle’s Most Influential People 2019: Common Ground Music Project Founder, Shontina Vernon

In addition, her Visionary Justice StoryLab earned Vernon a fellowship from the Robert Rauschenberg Foundation

This article appears in print in the November 2019 issue, as part of the Most Influential People of the Year feature. Click here to subscribe. Three years ago, Shontina Vernon took 11 other Seattle artists—in dance, music, spoken word and other arts—to Cuba to meet, learn from and collaborate with artists in that country. That trip served as the launch…

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Seattle’s Most Influential People 2019: yəhaw̓ Curatorial Team

Satpreet Kahlon, Tracy Rector and Asia Tail have created an exhibit to recognize the work of Northwest indigenous artists

From left: Satpreet Kahlon, Tracy Rector and Asia Tail on site at King Street Station

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