Seattle’s Most Influential People 2018: The Journalists

'Seattle Times' columnist Gene Balk and 'Crosscut' staff are keeping Seattle in the know on trends, politics and more

By Niki Stojnic

1_81

October 19, 2018

This article originally appeared in the November 2018 issue of Seattle Magazine.

This article appears in print in the November 2018 issue, as part of the Most Influential People of the Year feature. Click here to subscribe.

Numbers have never been as meaningful as when Gene Balk gathers and explains them. The Seattle Times’ “FYI Guy” sheds light on top-of-mind topics such as crime (“‘Mean world syndrome’: In some Seattle neighborhoods, fear of crime exceeds reality”) and transportation (“Housing cars or housing people? Debate rages as number of cars in Seattle hits new high”). His column, which began as a blog six years ago, sparks conversations and ultimately, realigns our perspectives. As one of the people who nominated Balk put it, “Seattle wouldn’t understand itself without him.” We agree.

In a shrinking media landscape, one bright spot is Crosscut, an online news magazine that began in 2007 with a tiny staff determined to be another voice covering local politics and policy. Eleven years in, it’s notable not only for surviving, but thriving, nimbly adapting from what began as a for-profit news outlet to the reader-funded nonprofit it is today. After merging with KCTS in 2015 under the umbrella Cascade Public Media, the scrappy news site has significantly bulked up its staff to produce more articles, videos and multimedia coverage, focusing on local politics, culture and the environment, and becoming one of the premier voices reporting what’s happening in the city. 

black-coffee

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

laura-clise-Intentionalist-01

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…

Dominic-GatesCROP

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…

Katrina_SpadeCROP

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…