Seattle Works

A blog that documents all things Seattle Works…and much much more!

Countdown to Swank: Thank You Sponsors! August 31, 2013

Filed under: Swank — seattleworks @ 11:15 am

We’re officially only six weeks away from Swank! THis week we’d like to take a few minutes to thank the companies that support Seattle Works through the sponsorship of Swank.

It is impossible to put on a great fundraiser alone! We have learned through our Hot Projects, Team Works, and Corporate Projects that the key to success is a sound partnership. As cheesy as it sounds, there is no “I” in “team,” so we would like to extend gratitude to our SWANK SPONSORS for 2013:

The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, The Boeing Company, Gallatin Public Affairs, Davis Wright Tremaine, Microsoft, Northeastern University, Point B, Revel Consulting, Starbucks, and Wright Runstad & Company


There’s still time if Swank sounds like a great fit for your company to sponsor!

Swank attracts 400+ local young professionals who are active, engaged, and interested in their community. Sound like an audience that your company wants to get in front of? There are different sponsorship levels for Swank—and we would love to help you find the perfect fit. Sponsorship levels start at just $500!

Often times Swank sponsorships are secured by an employee who knows and likes (or loves) Seattle Works and takes the chance to ask their boss about sponsorship opportunities from their company.  All it takes is an ask, and it would mean so much to us!


Questions? Or want us to give you some materials to help with the ask? Email for more information.


Civic Boot Camp whips us into shape! August 30, 2013

Filed under: Influence,LeadNOW,Our Team — seattleworks @ 3:39 pm

photoLast week, our friends at City Club and History Link teamed up for the second round of their new project, Civic Boot Camp. We can’t stop talking about what a great experience it was! Boot Camp was built out of the idea that to make a difference in your community, you need four key things: knowledge, connection, trust and action. In turn, Boot Camp was equal parts history lesson, policy briefing, networking session and call to get off the couch and do something–all focused around the issue of the history and development of Seattle’s Waterfront. Seattle Works Program Manager Katie Tiehen and LeadNOW Committee Member Kristin Elia both attended and had this to say:

What did you think of Civic Boot Camp?

Kristin: I found the concept of the boot camp really intriguing–the idea that civic engagement should come from knowledge, connection, trust and action. I think structuring the entire day around that concept and bringing in something very tangible–like the waterfront–was the perfect combination for engagement. You could instantly connect the past, present, and future of the waterfront to various components of civic life in the city and how a more engaged public makes a big impact. And better than that, you could see how structuring future boot camps in other neighborhoods or areas could be based on something current that is directly impacting the community we live in.

Katie: I’m a history nerd, so was completely drawn into Boot Camp with the prospect of a Seattle history lesson–what I didn’t expect and was so excited to get–in addition to a crash course in urban development–was a really clear understanding of the players and paths to action in the current debate over the waterfront. The caliber of the guest speakers we had throughout the day was inspiring–and the group of fellow Boot Campers was really one of the most diverse and challenging (in the best way) groups I’ve encountered in a while! It was amazing to see and talk about how the past has really informed our present and future with regards to how we treat and see our downtown. It was also so inspiring to talk with a group of Seattleites about our shared vision for this place we live and love–we were a diverse group that shared a lot of the same values when it comes to the community in which we live!

What do you think was the most valuable takeaway?

Kristin: I thought the overarching waterfront component was one of the best pieces of the boot camp, but I also found direct action at the end of the day very valuable. We were able to engage with a community organization around the issue of the waterfront and create solid action by voting on a grant to support their work and the larger campaign overall. I found that to be a perfect, concrete end to a day filled with knowledge and engaging conversation.

Katie: I agree on the waterfront theme–I think it’s one thing to talk about civic engagement broadly and another to explore it through a really concrete, pressing issue that is affecting our community right now. I thought the idea of knowledge, connection, trust and action as the foundation for engagement was really interesting when it was introduced, but even more compelling when I really saw those pieces come together throughout the day. It’s really empowering to know the history, know the players and know the routes to change–I’m so excited to see which issue Civic Boot Camp tackles next year!

Want to learn more about Civic Boot Camp? Check out City Club–and stay tuned for announcements in the Seattle Works Weekly Email!


Starwood Hotels rescues local greenspaces! August 29, 2013

Filed under: Corporate Projects,Volunteer — seattleworks @ 4:37 pm

photo 4 Hey Queen Anne and Kirkland: do your green spaces look a little more green this week?

Well, you might just have Starwood Hotels to thank for it! We had the great pleasure of organizing 400 Starwood Hotel employees from across the country last week at two massive restoration projects. With the help of our friends at EarthCorps and King County Parks, they:

– Cleared 1/4 acre of invasive species from the Queen Anne Greenspace

– Tackled invasive ivy at Kirkland’s 220-acre Big Finn Park








The groups were full of energy and worked tirelessly, knee-deep in branches, ivy and…plungers?

photo 5


We’ll leave it to our project leaders to sum it up, though:

“They far surpassed our modest expectations; they simply ‘wowed’ us! I noticed the front [of their tshirts] said ‘Caring about Communities,’ a sentiment which they embodied literally and figuratively. The people from Starwood were delightful, so kind and friendly. I know that is a part of their job, but the extent to which they demonstrated it came from the people they are.”

Thanks again to our friends at Starwood, EarthCorps and King County Parks for such a successful war against ivy last week!

Is your company interested in getting involved with Seattle Works? Check out our site and email Katie Tiehen, with questions.


Team Works Through Word of Mouth! August 28, 2013

Filed under: Team Works,Volunteer — seattleworks @ 4:06 pm

I constantly talk about how awesome Team Works is — and I’m not lying. But if I’ve learned one thing at Seattle Works, it’s that hearing things through word of mouth (preferably from the mouth of someone super cool) is the best way to get people involved. So, without further ado, here is a compilation of tweets that show a day in the life of a Team Works teammate:

“We put the anchors on our kiwi arbor on backwards…. we’ll fix it! @SeattleWorks#teamworks #theperennialmillenials

“Weeding the spinach! @SeattleWorks#teamworks #perennialmillenials

“I told you we’d fix it! Just flipped the board on top. @SeattleWorks #teamworks #perennialmillenials

“Building a kiwi arbor for Marra Farms! @SeattleWorks #teamworks#theperennialmillenials

“The flowers are so pretty at Marra Farms!!! @SeattleWorks #teamworks#theperennialmillenials

“We’re working on recruiting some independent vounteers to our team. @SeattleWorks#teamworks #theperennialmillenials

“Finishing up by planting some lettuce! Thanks for another great project, Marra Farms! @SeattleWorks #teamworks


PM3   PM


As you can see, by becoming a Team Works volunteer, you get to experience many emotions:

1. Happiness — obviously from weeding!

2. Accomplishment — who doesn’t love fixing things?! Can you say hero?

3. Awe and appreciation — sometimes it’s difficult to find time to appreciate nature. Well, when you spend 4 hours in a garden you do!

4. Inspiration — meeting other volunteers that aren’t a part of Team Works and talking about it helps promote and inspire others to get involved regularly. And who knows — maybe they’ll even join your team next round!

5. Understanding — when you’re all finished with the project, you have an understanding of the organization and why the work that you’ve done is so important. There’s no better feeling.

Now that you’ve seen the action via tweets, are you ready to join Team Works, volunteer with a group of like-minded and fun individuals, all while giving back to your community? I thought so. Email Irina:, or visit our Team Works page to learn more!


Look Who Got Swanky at the Preview Party! August 22, 2013

Filed under: Swank — seattleworks @ 2:02 pm

Swank Preview Party was earlier this week… and it was awesome!  Just over 50 people gathered to hear more about Seattle Works, what we have planned for Swank this year and to soak up some August sunshine.

We had wine tasting, tasty appetizers, good company, games and prizes.


Wanna play the quick game from the party? We’d love you to!

  1. How many Hot Projects has Seattle Works hosted this summer (June – August)?
  2. How many people have been trained through The Bridge since the program began in 2005?
  3. How many nonprofits have we partnered with or served in the last two years?
  4. How many people participated in this year’s Seattle Works Day?
  5. In what year was Seattle Works founded?

The questions are hard, but the answers are below (so you can cheat – we’re all for it).  We also previewed a handful of the items guests at Swank can bid on this year including:

  • Private Party for 40 at Grim’s
  • Live Taping of THE SOUP!
  • Macklemore & Ryan Lewis
  • Russian Vodka Party
  • Snowshoe trip for 10
  • $100 of Dogs – Po Dogs that is
  • One month at Bar Method
  • … and MORE!

Check out the full description of the items and others:   We’ll continue adding to this list as we get closer to the event, so check back.

If you have an item that you’d like to donate to Swank, we’d love to have it. It’s a great opportunity to get your product or business in front of 400 of Seattle’s emerging leaders.  You can contact us ( or fill out this quick form.


Have you grabbed your tickets to Swank yet? Go for it! Swank is Saturday, October 12th at Fremont Studios and we don’t want you to miss out:



1.61 Hot Projects, 2.1266 Bridge grads, 3. 263 nonprofits 4. 1126 Seattle Works Day participants 5. 1989 is when we were founded (almost 25 years ago!)


Calling All Captains–Team Works Captains, That Is! August 21, 2013

Filed under: Team Works,Volunteer — seattleworks @ 11:57 am

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again — being a Team Works Team Captain is AWESOME. So if you’re awesome and you love being around awesome people — what are you waiting for? Here are Team Captain responsibilities in a nutshell — try to contain your excitement while reading:

1. Recruiting teammates: you know that friend you’ve been trying to drag to a volunteer project? Here’s your chance — lure them in with promises of swag (shirts, water bottles, tote bags or gloves!) and parties (two to be exact).

2. Leading your team: you coordinate projects, send information and are the hero of the group if something goes wrong!

3. Encouraging social activities: despite its name, Team Works isn’t all work — it’s also very much play. You encourage activities outside of projects. Bonding with your teammates over food and beer? Yes please!

4. Promoting volunteerism: you obviously believe in civic engagement. So by telling your friends, co-workers, family and strangers your volunteering stories, you’re not only promoting Team Works, but you’re also promoting community engagement. You’re a modern-day John F. Kennedy (you know — because he issued and promoted the Peace Corps in 1961).

5. Organization variety: you work with and learn about four different community organizations each round. Learning the ins and outs of organizations is fascinating, a good way to network and a great way to learn about different community issues.

TW Blog Post 1

So — are you ready to become a Team Captain for the October-January round? I thought so! Check out the dates below and email for more information on how to get started!

Tues 9/10: Team Captain Orientation, 6pm-8pm

Thurs 10/9: KickOff, 6pm-8pm

Project 1: 10/12 10am-2pm

Project 2: 11/9 10am-2pm

Project 3: 12/14 10am-2pm

Project 4 & CoolDown: 1/11/14 10am-2pm & 3pm-5pm


Neely Olson Beltran can be found on the top of Kite Hill at Gasworks August 19, 2013

Filed under: 10 Question Profile — seattleworks @ 10:17 am

Neely Olson1. Name: Neely Olson Beltran

    Neighborhood: Central District

    Occupation: Student and Job Seeker (Social Media / Marketing)

    Years in Seattle: 22

2. Where is your favorite place to go in Seattle?

The top of kite hill at Gasworks Park

3. Your first interaction with Seattle Works was…?

I joined Team Works when I was single so I could meet new people while helping my community. I randomly ended up on an all-girl team, so I never found a date.


4. What’s the best meal you’ve eaten in the Seattle area?

Wild boar at the Madison Park Cactus.

5. Are you involved with any other Seattle nonprofit organizations?

Seattle Inner City Outings  Washington DECA

6. Which coffee shop do you most frequent?


7. What three words best describe your experience with Seattle Works?

Positive, fun, inspiring

8. Mariners, Sounders, or Seahawks?


9.  What is your most (or first) memorable volunteer experience?

Jumping up and down like an idiot on cardboard boxes inside the huge recycling bin at Food Lifeline

10. What makes someone a Seattleite?

A Seattleite is generally highly caffeinated, owns a pair of hiking boots, cares about the environment and their neighbors, and voted for Obama in the last presidential election.

This weekly 10 question profile is Seattle Works way of highlighting and saying THANK YOU to all that our volunteers, leaders, community partners, board members, committee members, etc do for our community! We’re asking the same 10 questions to various Seattle Works participants as a fun way to feature the different ways to be involved with Seattle Works and in Seattle.

Want to be profiled? Fill out this survey: and send a photo to yourself to Tomilyn at

P.S. In case you’re interested, the inspiration behind these interviews comes from NY Mag’s weekly blog post.