Why Seattle-King County?
As dedicated economic development professionals, we're committed to increasing economic vitality across King County through cluster-driven, client-focused economic development. As the only public-private economic development partnership ecompassing King County and its 39 cities, we're committed to serving companies seeking to do business here.
Contact any of us with your inquiries and we'll be happy to assist you. Click on our names to see our bios. For general business development requests, please email us here or call 206-389-8650.
Interim President & CEO
Economic Development Director, City of Bellevue
As interim president and CEO, James Henderson provides high-level leadership and strategic focus for the Economic Development Council of Seattle & King County.
James joined the City of Bellevue as the Economic Development Director in January of 2015. He oversees and coordinates economic development programs focused on business attraction, business retention and expansion and technology startups.
Previously, James served as the Assistant Director for Economic Development at the City of San Antonio where he managed development programs focused on business attraction, business retention and expansion and international trade and investment. He also served as the lead coordinator for San Antonio's Trade and Investment Strategy and Export Strategy as part of San Antonio’s involvement in the Brookings Institution Global Cities Initiative. At the City of San Antonio, James also served as an Economic Development Manager with the Economic Development Department, Deputy Director for the Office of Military Affairs, Interim-Manager of the Fort Sam Houston Community Development Office, and Trade and Investment Specialist at the International Affairs Department.
Prior to joining the City of San Antonio, James served as a Program Officer at the Stanley Foundation, where he founded and directed the Euro-Atlantic Initiatives program to foster political and economic reform and reconciliation in Serbia and Southeastern Europe. In addition, James worked at the Atlantic Council of the United States and the Overseas Development Council in Washington, DC, where he managed projects on political and economic reform in Eastern Europe, nuclear arms control and civil-military relations.
James earned a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Washington and Master Degrees from The George Washington University and Josef Korbel School of International Studies at the University of Denver. He has attended the 55th Annual National Security Forum at the US Air War College, was a Scholar at the East European Studies program of the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington, DC, and a Fellow at the NATO Parliamentary Assembly in Brussels.
He is married to Melissa Collins Henderson and has one daughter, Madeleine Anne Henderson. He enjoys skiing, hiking, climbing, traveling and spending time with his family and Newfoundland dog, Guinness.
Vice President of Operations & Strategic Initiatives
Business Development for Global Trade &
Heather is the Vice President of Operations & Strategic Initiatives for the Economic Development Council of Seattle & King County (EDC). In her role as Vice President, she oversees the organization’s research & communications efforts, operations & finance, and provides strategic project management on both internal and external programs and initiatives. She has been with the EDC for a total of eight years and is the organization’s cluster lead for Global Trade & Investment, as well as a member of the organization’s membership development team, working to retain and grow the organization’s membership base.
A Midwest transplant with a career that has taken her from one coast to the other, Heather has over 16 years of experience in marketing/communications (primarily in the non-profit and higher education sectors) and five years of experience in economic development. Prior to re-joining the EDC in 2011, she held positions with a variety of non-profits and higher education institutions including the University of Washington, United Way of Greenville County, Bradley University, Commuter Challenge, Blackbaud, Inc., and Paralyzed Veterans of America.
Heather holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Maryland, College Park and a Certificate in Nonprofit Management from the University of Washington.
Communications & Research Coordinator
Mark Stayton is the Communications and Research Coordinator for the Economic Development Council of Seattle-King County.
Prior to joining the EDC, Mark coordinated media and communications for the Pacific NorthWest Economic Region, (PNWER) a non-profit organization focused on improving trade and building the economy throughout the Pacific Northwest and Western Canada. In that role, Mark communicated the organization’s events and achievements to a large network of members and stakeholders, as well as to the media and general public throughout the region. He coordinated policy working groups on key industries within the Pacific Northwest economy and helped plan and execute large bi-national conferences.
For three years, Mark covered business and agriculture at the Skagit Valley Herald, a daily newspaper out of Mount Vernon, Washington. Through constant interaction with business owners, industry experts, employees and CEOs, he developed a passion for economic development and an appreciation for the hard work necessary to create and maintain local jobs.
Mark graduated with a bachelor’s degree in journalism and an economics minor from Western Washington University.
Business Development for Information &
David serves as the Information & Communications Technology Business Development Manager for the Economic Development Council of Seattle & King County. A seasoned software executive and entrepreneur, David has over two decades of end-to-end IT planning, product/program management, and Business-to-Business and Business-to-Consumer sales/marketing experience.
Most recently, David was the founder and CEO of eVenues.com, a Seattle-based ecommerce business and winner of the 2010 Founder Showcase in Silicon Valley. In 2005, he also co-founded and launched Yodio.com, a SaaS-based audio publishing platform. David spent 15 years prior at Microsoft where he led product planning and marketing initiatives for various early-stage software and cloud initiatives, including Microsoft® Speech.NET and Microsoft® .NET Services; he also spent five years working directly with developers as a software design program manager. During his career, he helped bring 16 different product and programs to life. Prior to Microsoft, David was a marketing representative at IBM in Bethesda, MD, and Southern California.
David is a former legislative intern for Senator Mark O. Hatfield (R-OR) in Washington, D.C. He studied at the University of Oregon and received a BA from California Polytechnic State University at San Luis Obispo.
Executive Assistant & Office Coordinator
New to Seattle, Marie most recently worked as the Outreach Program Manager for the City of Stockton (California), where she developed a comprehensive communications program to inform and engage a diverse public. She worked for seven years at the Sacramento International Airport, in both the Marketing & Public Relations and Business Services divisions, where she directed the Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) program, managed economic development partnerships, and led customer service staff.
With Wine Business certifications from Sonoma State University and the Culinary Institute of America, Marie has been a marketing consultant to dozens of wineries, restaurants and hotels for more than a decade.
Marie holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Management from Saint Mary's College of California, where she studied in Beijing and Shanghai, China. She can be found making a mess in the kitchen or playing in the dirt most weekends, as she loves to forage for shellfish, crab and mushrooms.
Business Development for Life Sciences & Health
Jary is the CEO of StratusG Consulting, a business and technology consulting firm with over two decades of experience with clients in the pharmaceutical, biotechnology, and medical device industries.
Jary has worked extensively throughout all phases of the product development pipeline, from concept through research, development, commercialization, and beyond. He has had the distinct privilege of working directly with many key industry players near his home in Seattle, nationally, and internationally, including India and China.
StratusG began its journey with life-science companies, implementing information technology (IT) systems and applications as well as the underlying business critical compliant processes (e.g., Document Management, Laboratory Information Management (LIMS), Customer Relationship Management (CRM), Business Intelligence (BI), etc.). StratusG’s’ software and application unit has created commercial systems including Content Management, Contract Management, Medical Science Liaison (KOL tracking tools), and many other time and cost saving applications for their myriad of clients. With this depth of experience and knowledge of IT systems, FDA regulations, and from working with many skilled executive teams, more of our clients began asking for guidance with their IT strategic planning, commercial strategies, and long-range corporate planning. For Jary, this meant a rapid transition to fill the role of interim CIO and executive coach for many of these clients.
Jary is a current member of Life Science Washington (LSW), served as the President of the Organization of Regulatory and Clinical Associates (ORCA) for several years, and remains an active member. Jary/StratusG are also members of the Metlakatla Indian Community Govenors Board, WINGS, and other Northwest Organizations.
Jary and StratusG have had the pleasure of working with many life-science companies including Pfizer Pharmaceuticals, ZymoGenetics, Dendreon, Cell Therapeutics, Immunex, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Corcept Therapeutics, Nastech Pharmaceutical Company, MDRNA, Vilco, Corewerks, Parexel International, Medivation, ICOS Corporation, and others.
Business Development for Clean Technology
Alison is an “energy infrastructure” futurist, strategist, technologist, and communications expert. She advises entrepreneurs, investors, and governments regarding clean technology businesses with over two decades of knowledge built up in the renewables, clean technology and finance fields. Alison’s career includes executive roles for NREL and several successful start-ups. She is a frequent speaker, presenting for important forums at Colorado, Silicon Valley, Europe, and China.
Her clean technology and sustainability experience began in Oregon in 1996 as one of the first employees for an outdoor apparel start-up using sustainably sourced materials. She was also the lead advocate for WashPIRG working on issues that included transportation and environmental toxins.
She founded one of the first trade associations for sustainable businesses, Sea Change, over a decade ago that engaged political and corporate decision-makers to rethink the meaning of value in a carbon constrained economy and included renewable energy companies such as CalPine and Clipper Wind. She was a senior strategist at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) working on financing models for distributed and industrial solar among other foci, including the Venture Capital Network and generating the program strategy for an innovative approach to mapping clean energy activity (including investments) called OpenEI. She was a senior research consultant at Clean Edge, Inc. working with top level decision makers in institutional investment and the clean technology. At Future 500, she worked with NGOs like NRDC and corporations like Coca-cola on environmental negotiations as the director of business development and public policy. Alison was one of six strategists who built the Sustainable Business Achievement Rating system (S-BAR) whose methodology was adopted by UL (Underwriters Laboratories) for their assessment of business sustainability in 2010.
While engaged with the clean technology sector she has been an active part of the community through organizing roles at the Advanced Energy Economy and Clean Energy Now, among other board participations. She currently serves as president for a start-up solar company called Sol Power Energy, as well as an adviser to seed stage companies working on innovations for clean energy and banking in very poor economic conditions.
Alison has a BA from Reed College in Portland, Oregon and an MBA from the University of Oregon.
Mark H. Gleason
Business Development Manager for Maritime &Logistics
Mark H. Gleason is the Business Development Manager for Maritime & Logistics at the Economic Development Council of Seattle & King County (EDC). Mark brings over 20 years of maritime experience to the role. His new role is twofold: working with existing maritime and logistics-related businesses on retention and expansion, and recruiting and providing advisory services to maritime and logistics-related businesses that may wish to expand or re-locate into King County.
Prior to his current position, Mark was Director of the Washington Maritime Federation, an association of associations, comprised of maritime-focused organizations who have come together to support the industry. The maritime industry is very diverse with subsectors in shipbuilding, fishing, water transportation, logistics, shipping and more.
Mark served as the Executive Director of the Alaska Bering Sea Crabbers, Government Affairs representative with a Seattle-based fishing company, in seafood sales, as a contractor for the National Marine Fisheries Service, an academic researcher, and a commercial fisherman in Alaska, Washington, and California. Mark also spent a year as a Sea Grant Fellow for the US Senate Subcommittee on Oceans, Atmosphere, Fisheries & Coast Guard helping to craft domestic and international fisheries policy.
Mark has a Masters of Marine Affairs from the University of Washington, a graduate certificate in Global Trade, Transportation, & Logistics also from the University of Washington, and a Bachelor of Science in Earth Systems, Science & Policy from California State University Monterey Bay.
The Economic Development Council of Seattle-King County’s Military & Defense Business Development Manager is Larry G. Salter. Larry is a 28 year career naval officer with 14 years experience as a defense contractor. His military experience included oversight of multi-million dollar defense projects and budgets as well as significant operational experience. He finished his naval career as the Commanding Officer, Naval Air Station Whidbey Island where he oversaw 17 departments, 1400 civilian personnel, 300 military personal, and a $150 million annual operating budget.
Since leaving the Navy in 2002, Larry has been a defense contractor. He worked as the marketing director for a small high-tech firm for 16 months and then ran the west coast operations for a $300 million research and development company for nine years. In 2002, Larry started his consulting business, LGS Solutions. LGS Solutions specializes in working with small businesses to help them with government business development and the government contracting process.
Larry is a member of the following organizations: Pacific Northwest Defense Coalition; Society of American Military Engineers; Navy League; Armed Forces Communications and Electronics Association; Puget Sound Naval Bases Association; and the Association of the US Army. He has also served as a VA issues moderator with Senator Murray; served on Governor Inslee’s transition team; previous member of the Puget Sound Regional Council—Military Defense Partnership; and is currently serving on Congressman Kilmer’s Veterans Advisory Council.
Larry has an undergraduate business degree from Oregon State University; a MBA from Troy State University; a master of science in supply chain management from the National Defense University; an Executive Certificate in Strategy and Innovation from MIT; and a Project Management Professional certification.
Samantha Gotkin is the founder and principal consultant of S|E|G Consulting. She has worked in the local nonprofit industry for over 20 years, specializing in organizational capacity building, fundraising, volunteer management, event development and execution. Samantha has supported a variety of nonprofit and corporate entities’ events and campaigns including the JDRF Seattle Guild (formerly Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation), Virginia Mason, Economic Development Council of Seattle & King County, Washington Youth Soccer Association, Seattle Housing Authority, Wells Fargo, Seattle Young People’s Project, Swim Across America, Seattle Public Schools and Circle of Friends for Mental Health.
Why Seattle-King County?
....It's Home of Big Ideas!
The EDC provides confidential consulting services, free-of-charge, to businesses seeking to establish operations, expand, or relocate within King County.