News from the Puget Sound Partnership

Alicia Lawver
(360) 464-2011


Gov. Inslee builds new path forward with appointments to PSP's Leadership Counci

Gov. Inslee has appointed longtime environmental advocate Stephanie Solien and former Ecology director Jay Manning to the Leadership Council, the Puget Sound Partnership’s seven-member governing body. Diana Gale, a senior lecturer at the University of Washington’s Evans School of Public Affairs, was reappointed to fill the remainder of David Dicks’ term.

Solien has worked in politics, government and the nonprofit arena for more than 25 years in both Washington, D.C., and Washington state. In 2011, Solien consulted with Climate Solutions and the Seattle Chamber of Commerce on creating jobs in the energy efficiency sector and served as Environmental Co-Chair of the Seattle Chamber of Commerce’s Leadership Conference.

Manning, currently a partner with Cascadia Law Group, spent several years working for the State of Washington, first in the Ecology Division of the Washington Attorney General's Office, then later as Director of the Department of Ecology and Gov. Gregoire’s Chief of Staff.

“A healthy Puget Sound is about clean water and maintaining a vital economic engine,” said Gov. Inslee. “This is a weighty mission that requires the engagement of Washington citizens as well as our partners. Stephanie and Jay are both results-driven, and ready to lead the region toward a healthy, prosperous Puget Sound.”

These are Gov. Inslee’s first Leadership Council appointments for the Puget Sound Partnership, quickly following the selection of Sheida Sahandy as executive director.

“Bringing Stephanie and Jay onto the Leadership Council reinforces Gov. Inslee’s commitment to bringing in strong leaders with impressive records of getting work done,” said Martha Kongsgaard, chair of the Puget Sound Partnership’s Leadership Council. “While I will miss the experience and wisdom of my departing colleagues, I look forward to the new energy and enthusiasm these new faces will bring.”

Departures include Dan O’Neal, whose term officially ended last June, and Dicks who is resigning early to focus more fully on his new law firm. Gale, whose term also officially ended last June, will fill out the remainder of Dicks’ term through June 25, 2015. Solien and Manning’s appointments are through June 25, 2017. A fourth appointment is expected soon to replace Steve Sakuma, whose term also expired last June.

“The caliber of the Leadership Council members – past and present – who have stepped up to the plate, and their depth of commitment, is impressive,” said Sahandy, the Partnership’s new director since Feb. 4. “As we focus and accelerate our recovery efforts and forge a sustainable future for Puget Sound, Jay and Stephanie’s contributions will be invaluable.”

The next Leadership Council meeting is this Wednesday, March 12, and Thursday, March 13, in Olympia. These meetings are open to the public and all are welcome to provide comment and learn about the regional effort to restore and protect Puget Sound. The full agenda, meeting materials and directions are available at

Leadership Council bios

Letter from Leadership Council Chair Martha Kongsgaard

About the Puget Sound Partnership
The Puget Sound Partnership is the organization leading the recovery of Puget Sound. The Partnership coordinates the efforts of citizens, governments, tribes, scientists, businesses and nonprofits to set priorities, implement a regional recovery plan and ensure accountability for results. For more information, go to  

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