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April 30, 2012

Seattle’s ‘Secret Sauce’ – How one rainy town transformed into a global powerhouse

by Maggie Humphreys


Geography. People. Events. 
Dumb luck. Which was it that made this relatively remote city in a rainy corner of the Pacific Northwest one of the world’s recognized centers of international commerce, culture, and innovation? The correct answer is all of the above.
Stephen H. Dunphy, Crosscut

Last week, Bill Stafford, Nyhus senior counselor and founder of the Trade Development Alliance of Greater Seattle, chaired a panel discussion titled “From World’s Fair to World City” at the Museum of History and Industry. The panel examined Seattle’s rise as a global city, and enjoyed the insights of Dick Ford, former head of the Port of Seattle; Shan Mullin, former chair of the Trade Development Alliance of Greater Seattle; and Diane Adachi, director for international relations at the University of Washington.

The panel looked to identify how Seattle, a “rainy corner of the world” grew into a global, economic powerhouse. A deepwater port, equidistance between Asia and Europe, a genial culture, and the three Bills (Bill Boeing, Bill Weyerhaeuser and Bill Gates) established Seattle as a hub of international trade, travel and culture. Global reach isn’t unique to Seattle – international trade supports one in every three jobs in Washington state. Washington is the most trade-dependent state in the country, and with the rise of the BRIC nations, our state is poised to grow as a key gateway for the movement of people, goods and ideas.

Nyhus is a product of its environment; like the city our global headquarters calls home, our work spans the nation and the globe. With clients in diverse markets like Australia and China and work varying from statewide campaigns to national thought leadership – we take advantage of our location in one of the world’s best innovation hubs and tailor our work to be meaningful across borders.

[Image courtesy of Wikimedia]

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