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Northwest People

1 People Of Influence -- Pacific Picks -- Northwest People

Power lasts 10 years, says a Korean proverb, influence not more than a hundred. We tried to keep that distinction in mind as we put together our list of the state's most influential people. Influence, we kept telling ourselves, is not the same as power. Or fame. Or money.

What we were after are the 100 people who, famous or anonymous, powerful or disenfranchised, have a lasting effect on who we are or how we think.

It's a subjective collection. We had some help, asking hundreds of community leaders around the state to think about who was making a difference in their lives. Many of their ideas are represented here. Some people, like Julie McCulloch of Port Townsend, might have been missed otherwise.

But in the end there was no science to the selections. It's not a survey, but one magazine's highly biased opinion. We invite you to send up your own nominations. Just follow the directions in the box on this page.

Here then is our compilation, including 10 interesting people profiled in more detail. Although they lack the notoriety of a Bill Gates or a Ken Griffey Jr., these terrific 10 underline the breadth of influence of this list. - Mark Matassa


Send your nominations for 100 People of Influence to Pacific Picks, P.O. Box 70, Seattle, WA 98111, or e-mail: All nominations must live in Washington state; please briefly state why you are nominating them.

Barry Ackerley. As authoritative, in his way, as a Shawn Kemp slam dunk. His billboards loom over traffic in Seattle, Boston, Miami and Portland, and indoor versions line airport terminals in 110 cities. His collection of TV and radio stations includes Seattle's all-sports KJR-AM, where a frequent topic is Ackerley's basketball team, the Seattle SuperSonics.

Paul Allen. Since he left the company, the Microsoft co-founder has been a blizzard of business and philanthropic activity, putting big bucks into such diverse ventures as TicketMaster, America Online, Asymetrix (software), Starwave (Internet multimedia), a Jimi Hendrix Museum, the Seattle Commons and the Portland Trail Blazers.

Cal Anderson. The Seattle Democrat is the state's leading advocate for gay civil rights. As the first openly gay member of the Legislature - and now the first member with AIDS - Sen. Anderson has scaled barriers inside the Capitol and inspired many people outside it.

Ralph Anderson. Quick, what does a Northwest house look like? If you picture generous eaves, a lot of wood inside and out, large windows and soaring ceilings, you've got the style Anderson and a handful of others defined beginning in the 1950s. He also helped save Pioneer Square; in recent years he's specialized in sleek urban townhouses.

Ida Ballasiotes. When her daughter Diane was abducted in Pioneer Square and murdered seven years ago, she began fighting for tougher prison sentences and preventive efforts like the "three strikes" law. At first a symbolic leader of the victims'-rights movement, she sought and won a seat in the Legislature from Mercer Island, and now sets state policy as the Republican chairwoman of the House Corrections Committee.

Chris Bennett. Both through The Seattle Medium, his weekly newspaper, and his small Seattle radio station, KRIZ, he takes on the mainstream press and gives his mostly African-American audience a pointed view of the news. It's the news, he says, from a black perspective.

Brian Benzel. Hard to believe the Edmonds School District was in turmoil, just emerging from a nasty teachers strike, when he took over as superintendent in 1988. It's now a national model, reinvigorated by Benzel innovations that today are considered common sense: He shredded reams of regulations and gave more classroom control to principals, teachers and parents.

Phil Bereano. Not your typical UW tenured professor: a self-described technology skeptic, semi-Luddite, Hanford watchdog, genetic-engineering scold, Marxist Jew and a founder of the aggressive gay-rights group Seattle ACT-UP. He's also an engaging and original thinker, grudgingly respected even by those he challenges.

Frank Blethen. In an era of media conglomerates, his Seattle Times is one of the last large family-owned papers. But as the fourth-generation Blethen publisher he's been operating lately in mogul mode: The Times Company owns papers in Walla Walla, Yakima and several Seattle suburbs, and it's poised to join the Microsoft Network as part of an expansion into electronic publishing.

Sherry Bockwinkel. With permission from nobody, she's dramatically changed the state's political landscape. In Bockwinkel's hands, the dusty old citizen initiative became an art form: Among several other campaigns, she led the drive to limit politicians' terms in office - and in the process gave regular people some power in government.

Gordon Bowker. What would we possibly drink without him? In 1971, Bowker couldn't find a good cup of coffee, so with Zev Siegl and Jerry Baldwin he founded Starbucks. Eleven years later, he and Paul Shipman began Redhook Ale Brewery in a tiny transmission shop in Ballard. Both brews have a national following and have spawned dozens of imitators.

David Brewster. His Seattle Weekly and Eastside Week are successful if blandly yuppified alternatives to the daily press. But Brewster's Sasquatch Publishing books - especially the "Northwest Best Places" guides - are appreciated by visitor and native alike.

Tom Cable. Before most of us had even heard the word "biotechnology," his Bellevue-based Cable Howse Ventures was putting up the money to help launch Immunex, Physio Control, Zymogenetics and other firms that established this area as a biotech leader.

Margarethe Cammermeyer. They asked, she told. After a bestselling book and and a hit made-for-TV movie, her story of discharge and court-ordered reinstatement to the Washington National Guard is well-known. It inspired some, infuriated others, and focused national attention on the contentious issue of whether gays and lesbians should serve in the military.

Phyllis Campbell. Banker, educator, glass-ceiling breaker, workaholic. In her day job as U.S. Bank of Washington president, she's helping define electronic banking. In non-banker's hours, she chairs the state's biggest business lobby and presides over Washington State University's board of regents. In September she takes over the Greater Seattle Chamber of Commerce.

John Carlson. A cogent advocate for conservatism, with a politician's skill for catching a public wave and riding it, as he did with the "Three Strikes You're Out" initiative. Between his weekly Seattle Times column, daily KVI-AM talk-radio show and frequent KCTS-9 TV appearances, he's unavoidable.

Ron Chew. The former editor of the International Examiner community newspaper in Seattle, he's transformed the Wing Luke Asian Museum with award-winning historical programs - like the recent "20 Years After the Fall of Saigon" - and events that make it more a community center than a traditional, musty museum.

Dale Chihuly. Instantly recognizable and frequently spectacular, the work of the Tacoma-born glass artist is one of the Northwest's great cultural exports. He's turned Seattle into the nation's glass capital and influenced a generation of younger artists. His colorful "baskets" and large installations - as extravagant as they are fragile - have changed our perception of public art.

Mari Clack. Two governors - Mike Lowry and Booth Gardner - have counted on her advice. She's a respected civic leader in Spokane, a strong advocate for state parks and a friend of Planned Parenthood. She's also on the UW board of regents, where she had a say in picking the new university president.

Priscilla "Patsy" Collins and Harriet Stimson Bullitt. For a generation their family set the regional standard in broadcasting excellence. And when they broke up the KING empire, these sisters did it with incredible generosity, donating classical radio station KING-FM to nonprofit arts groups. Their philanthropy also includes the Bullitt Foundation, which aids environmental causes.

Jack Creighton. Before high-tech, before aerospace, there was timber, and for almost as long there's been Weyerhaeuser. The business is a major economic force in the state, from tree planting and cutting to downtown Seattle office development. As the first CEO not related to the company's founders, Creighton has been a reformer in his four years at the helm: raising the company's political profile, improving earnings and pleasing environmentalists at the same time. Charles Cross. "Seeking drummer and bassist . . . can't suck." His bimonthly publication The Rocket is call board and touchstone to the Seattle rock scene, and he's an attuned chronicler. When Kurt Cobain killed himself, it was Cross on the phone with Larry King, trying to explain grunge.

George Duff. Under his direction since 1968, the Greater Seattle Chamber of Commerce has been a key force in the state's economy. A visionary, motivator and tireless worker, Duff helped extend I-90 across Lake Washington, build the Washington State Convention & Trade Center and organize the 1993 Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum, to name just a few.

Gene Duvernoy. While politicians make speeches about open space, he's been on the ground keeping it open for two decades. Working in and out of government, and as chairman of a ballot initiative campaign, Duvernoy is the person most responsible for preserving more than 12,000 acres of farmland in King County.

William Dwyer. One of the most respected and certainly the most influential jurist in the state. Among the effects of his rulings: Hundreds of thousands of acres of old trees still stand, King County and Metro governments merged and the state's term-limits law doesn't apply to members of Congress.

Jim Ellis. The prototypical civic activist, and probably the consensus answer, a generation ago, to the question, "Who runs Seattle?" His vision helped create Metro, clean up Lake Washington, construct the Kingdome, lid the freeways and build the Convention & Trade Center, among many other projects.

Dan Evans. He hasn't been out of office all that long, but - given the loss in leadership and civility among politicians - it seems like a lifetime ago. As a Republican governor from 1965 to 1977 (he was later a U.S. senator), he founded The Evergreen State College, built new state parks, cleaned up air and water and poured unprecedented millions into education. Succeeding governors are all measured against him.

Gregory Falls. A Contemporary Theatre was his brainchild in 1965, and he's largely responsible for the richness (and national reputation) of the region's theater scene. Had ACT failed, Seattle may have become a city dominated by a single theater.

Billy Frank Jr. He's been called the Northwest's Mahatma Gandhi. After years fighting for Indian fishing rights - and winning in court, with the famous 1974 Boldt Decision - the Nisqually tribal leader began preaching cooperation; his peacemaking led to statewide agreements managing fish, timber and water. In recognition, he won the 1992 Albert Schweitzer Prize for Humanitarianism.

Jerry Franklin. The "guru of old growth," a UW forestry professor, he led the charge to set aside 7.4 million acres of trees in the Northwest - and made the spotted owl famous along the way. He's also the brains behind "new forestry," the idea of leaving behind some trees, snags and logs instead of clear-cutting.

Kemper Freeman Jr. Not your typical developer, he continues to break long-held retailing "rules" at his family-owned Bellevue Square, turning the mall into a premiere shopping spot and a magnet for Eastside growth. His opposition to this year's regional transit proposal helped kill the plan at the polls.

Bill Gates. It's almost impossible to overstate his influence. He's changed the way we work and play. Not only is Microsoft the world's dominant software company, but it anchors the Northwest's growing high-tech industry. Newly minted Microsoft millionaires - led by Gates and his billions - are the area's next generation of philanthropists and civic visionaries.

Steve Glancy. One of the state's most important AIDS policy makers, he helped develop the area's early AIDS education campaigns and shape state AIDS legislation, which is considered a national model. He also founded the activist group AIDSWATCH and was a director of Rosehedge House, the AIDS hospice. Last month after he was selected for this list, he died from complications of the disease he spent the last decade working against.

Bob Gogerty. "The Kingmaker," as he's been called, was at the strategic controls when Gov. Mike Lowry and Seattle Mayor Norm Rice were elected. But he's also been a strategist for Boeing, Weyerhaeuser and Seafirst. His skill: He interprets big business to Democrats, and vice versa.

Kay Greathouse. Critics have dismissed Seattle's Frye Art Museum for its unremarkable collection, "amateurishly hung and poorly lit." But it has survived and is rebuilding thanks to the devotion of Greathouse, who - without a background in business or art - ran the museum for nearly 30 years after her husband's death. Under new management now, it will be more professional but never more gracious.

Ken Griffey Jr. It's tempting to say the Mariners' center fielder is Babe Ruth and Willie Mays on plastic grass, but that's just the kind of comparison he hates. Besides, it's enough to say he's Ken Griffey Jr.: a true sports hero, the rare person whose feats inspire kids and flabbergast adults. Even in a cast, he makes teal seem a little less obnoxious.

Luz Bazan Gutierrez. A one-woman wealth-building strike force, she trains entrepreneurs in Yakima's Hispanic community, teaches high-school students about business and, with local banks, created a business-loan program for people who wouldn't qualify otherwise. She also sells real estate; many clients are Hispanic first-time homebuyers.

Donna Hanson. As the administrator of all Catholic social and health services offered in Eastern Washington, she supervises an annual budget of $3.3 million and a professional staff of 150, as well as 1,600 volunteers. She does this, admirers say, with caring, compassion and a sense of peace that's infectious.

Tom Heidelbaugh. His love for the cedar canoe jump-started the cultural renaissance under way among the Salish people. He's getting young people involved as canoe carvers and pullers, and he helped organize the state centennial Paddle to Seattle and, two years ago, the Paddle to Bella Bella, Canada.

Kay Hirai. Her influence isn't generalized, like a talk-show host's or a politician's, but she makes a big difference on a smaller scale. She created her own welfare-to-work program, employing women on public assistance at her Studio 904 salons, and she's battling the use of dangerous chemicals in the cosmetics industry.

Bill Hutchinson. His late brother's name is on the building, but it was Bill Hutchinson - retired surgeon and onetime college and minor-league baseball player - who founded Seattle's world-famous Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center.

Milton Katims. This year, at age 85, the Toscanini protege returned as guest conductor of the Seattle Symphony, the orchestra he led to prominence beginning in 1954. His influence also lives in three decades of family concerts, children's concerts and school concerts that turned on several generations of Washingtonians, not just to music, but to creativity.

Aki Kurose. She's changing the world, one kid at a time. In her first-grade classroom at Seattle's Laurelhurst Elementary, children learn respect for one another, and for their differences. She's won numerous awards for teaching and community service. "Without a doubt," says school board member Alan Sugiyama, "she is the finest human being I know."

Gary Larsen. Though he's out of the cartoon business these days, his "Far Side" strips, calendars, mugs, T-shirts and related paraphernalia continue to influence our dispositions as well as our office decor. Still a Seattle resident, Larsen has a thousand imitators but few if any peers.

Gary Locke. The King County executive is point man on such local issues as repairing the Kingdome or building a new ballpark. But his deeper legacy may be as the Legislature's top budget writer in the late 1980s and early '90s, when he presided over phenomenal growth in social programs and overall spending - prompting, in part, the budget-limiting backlash Initiative 601.

Hubert Locke. Aside from all the students he's inspired over the years as head of the UW's Graduate School of Public Affairs (he's now a professor and dean emeritus), Locke serves as a sort of civic wise-man-in-residence, counseling patience and understanding in politicians and offering a voice of reason on contentious issues from race relations to growth management.

Ann Lovejoy. A writer in bloom. Her popular books and Post-Intelligencer newspaper column have introduced untold thousands to the joys of gardening and guided more experienced hands through the peculiar brambles of doing so in the Northwest.

Harvey Manning. He's hiked thousands of miles, saved Cougar Mountain and persuaded Congress and a reluctant President Ford to preserve the North Cascade wilderness. And his guides have sent footsore generations happily trailward, "one step at a time." He's a Northwest treasure.

Craig McCaw. When your phone rings in a public restroom or at the beach, blame him. Like Bill Gates, he's part visionary, part business wizard and a Northwest success. Sure, now that cellular phones are free it's easy to imagine everyone wanting one. But the market didn't exist until McCaw Cellular created it.

Corrine McGuigan. Her favorite question on greeting a friend is, "So, how is your soul?" Much more than an academician, the Gonzaga University dean of education volunteers as a trainer for Spokane nonprofit organizations and, as a friend puts it, "regularly reminds us that we must be more than just what we do."

Herman McKinney. He's heading a Chamber of Commerce project with the ambitious goal of creating 1,000 private-sector jobs in depressed Central and Southeast Seattle. He's also a leader of The Breakfast Group: professional African Americans dedicated to helping young men in their communities.

Samuel McKinney and Robert Jeffrey. As pastors, respectively, of Seattle's Mount Zion Baptist Church and New Hope Baptist Church, Rev. McKinney and Rev. Jeffrey are longtime spiritual and civic leaders, especially in the African-American community. McKinney may be the state's best known civil-rights leader; he has a national reputation. Jeffrey has been central in the Black Dollar Days Task Force promotions.

Rand and Robyn Miller. Working in Colbert, outside Spokane, they created Myst, a phenomenally popular and entirely new kind of CD-ROM computer game: It's known for its complexity, painterly graphics and music rather than body counts or explosions. Now "Myst-like" is a goal in the software world. Rand is the programmer; his younger brother Robyn the artist and musician.

Jim Mirel. Almost two-thirds of Jews in the Seattle area are not affiliated with a synagogue, but Rabbi Mirel is helping change that. He makes religion inviting, accepting contemporary realities such as interfaith marriage. As a result, his reform Temple B'nai Torah has been growing steadily; it moves from Mercer Island to Bellevue's Crossroads area next year.

Bob Moorehead. On Sundays, the size and devotion of his Overlake Christian Church congregation illustrate how conservative, family-oriented preaching is bringing boomers back to church. On the first Tuesdays in November, election results suggest that Christian fundamentalists are changing the state. Kirkland's Overlake is a leader in the movement.

John Morefield. He's that rare creature: an optimistic inner-city principal. Despite a poor and mostly at-risk student body, Seattle's Hawthorne Elementary is a success: Parents are involved, a neighborhood group volunteers help and students are learning, eagerly. Morefield's part: He cares, and he believes in the power of learning.

Tomio Moriguchi. Uwajimaya, his family's massive Asian supermarket and import center, is the hub of business activity in Seattle's International District. As company president, Moriguchi has been a key force in revitalizing the district, and he led development of the Keiro Nursing Home for elderly Japanese Americans.

Nathan Myhrvold. Gave up a career in physics to join Microsoft, where he's the technology guru - the guy who develops the programs sold by the marketing gurus. He's extremely close to Bill Gates (they're writing a book together) and he's one of President Clinton's advisers on the future of the information superhighway.

Bruce, John and James Nordstrom and John McMillan. As they expanded the company, the former chairmen of Nordstrom acted as ambassadors for a certain Northwest ethos: niceness. We take it for granted, but they practically reinvented customer-friendly retailing. Bruce Nordstrom, in the new book "The Nordstrom Way," calls it "literally and metaphorically getting down on your knees for the customer."

Margaret Sanders Ott. A beloved music educator for more than 50 years, the Whitworth College professor emeritus elicits awe-inspiring respect from her students. Several recently solicited contributions and commissioned a major orchestral work in her honor; it premiered in Spokane this spring. "Retired" now, she still coaches singers and judges piano competitions.

Jonathan Poneman and Bruce Pavitt. They're the Berry Gordy of grunge. The founders of Sub Pop heard something in a bunch of anonymous local bands like Nirvana and Soundgarden, and soon the music world had its next big thing: the Seattle sound. Sub Pop became the ultimate indie label; now, teamed with Warner Music Group, Poneman and Pavitt have the budget to really rock.

George Rathman. A father of the biotech industry, one of the first in the country to recognize the business possibilities in a spliced gene. The founder of Amgen Corp. and Bothell-based Icos, he predicts genetic engineering "will have more impact than any other technology in the history of man, maybe including fire."

Paul Redmond. The leader of Spokane's impressive economic development efforts, he's a dedicated civic activist and visionary. In his day job, he runs Washington Water Power, Eastern Washington's largest utility and one of the state's biggest public companies.

Warren Featherstone Reid. The key behind-the-scenes figure in state health law for 40 years. He was an aide to Sen. Warren Magnuson and adviser to Gov. Booth Gardner. He helped expand federal financing of medical research and write such legislation as the federal Nurse Training Act and the state Basic Health Plan. He's the namesake of the state's Warren Featherstone Reid Award for excellence in health care.

Louis Richmond. There are those who do and there are those who promote; Richmond's a promoter extraordinaire. He "created" Northwest celebrity chefs like Kathy Casey and Monique Barbeau, and landed "news" coverage estimated to be worth $1 million for a dinner train. If you think you're hungry, he probably planted the idea.

Terry Rogers. His name's not well known, but as chief operating officer of King County Medical Blue Shield, the state's largest health insurer, he has a big say in deciding which medical procedures are covered, how much consumers will pay and which doctors will get the work.

Kathleen Ross. The founder and tireless president of Heritage College in Toppenish and Omak, she's brought higher education to thousands of disadvantaged multicultural students who wouldn't otherwise have the opportunity. She recently won the state Medal of Merit Award for exceptional public service.

Judy Runstad. She can raise big money faster than you can say "power breakfast." Her job, land-use attorney, barely hints at her influence: She's part of the inner circle of top politicians in both parties - a trusted bridge between business and government.

George Russell. He's better known elsewhere than in the Northwest, but he's one of the world's most influential money traders. His Tacoma-based Frank Russell Company recommends investments to the managers of huge pension funds. The amount at stake, based on his advice, is said to be $500 billion. That's billion. Dollars.

Faye Sarkowsky. She's a barrier breaker, a business role model who offers women guidance as they bump against the glass ceiling. She helped get the Seattle Art Museum built and influences art and commerce as a member of several boards of directors, including Children's Hospital, the Fifth Avenue Theater Foundation and Commerce Bank.

Paul Schell. When the UW thought it wanted an interim president to take over for William Gerberding, the outgoing dean of architecture was one of those mentioned. Developer, innkeeper, educator, philanthropist and president of the Port of Seattle board, he's at the center of the state's money and power network.

Howard Schultz. Until he took over, Starbucks was really just a pretty good cup of coffee. He's made it a near-religion, jangling the nerves of a double-tall nation and creating a new vocabulary in the process.

Patrick Scott. Not a household name, but as the head of the last locally owned broadcast operation of any size in Seattle, he has a lot to say about what we watch on the tube and hear on the radio. Among Fisher Broadcasting's holdings are KOMO-TV and KOMO-AM, hot-talk KVI-AM, KPLZ-FM, KATU-TV in Portland, and a dozen small radio stations in Eastern Washington and Montana.

Belding Scribner. Few others have saved so many lives. Working at the UW Medical Center, he pioneered kidney transplants and kidney dialysis as a continuing treatment; there are now some 750,000 people worldwide on dialysis.

Martin Selig. He's always been the developer people love to hate, but nobody's had more influence on the Seattle skyline. He built the 76-story Columbia Seafirst Center, the black "Darth Vader Building" at Fourth and Battery and other office towers, as well as many mid-rise buildings in Lower Queen Anne and the Denny Regrade.

Frank Shrontz. What impact does Boeing have on the state? Right: any it wants. As CEO of the largest and most important business in the region, Shrontz can make or break the economy, from how many people are working to who pays what taxes. And his company's planes have shrunk the world.

Rick Simonson. Few cities anywhere are as book-crazy as Seattle. A big reason for that is Elliott Bay Book Company's manager, who founded and developed the popular and much-copied author-reading series. The success of Elliott Bay and the UW Bookstore paved the way for literary efforts like the Seattle Arts & Lectures Series, founded and directed by Sherry Prowda.

Stuart Sloan. He's at the head of the table or somewhere nearby when decisions get made at a lot of Northwest signature businesses. Among his big ventures: He's chairman of QFC grocery stores, helped run Egghead Software and owns University Village.

Jeff Smith. Face it, the Frugal Gourmet can be cloying; you might not want him as a dinner guest. Still, it's easy to see why his books and TV show are so popular: He's on to something with recipes that are attractive, healthy, tasty and not expensive or difficult. His style is Northwest Sensible, the cooking equivalent of khakis and Gore-Tex.

Chang Mook Sohn. Even in Olympia's world of gray suits and pedants, he's got what seems like a boring job: state chief economist. But what sprouts from his spreadsheets! Every penny spent by the Legislature begins with his economic forecast: He's arguably the most influential figure in state government.

Kent Stowell and Francia Russell. They've brought acclaim (and ticket buyers) to Pacific Northwest Ballet since arriving in 1977. He works principally as choreographer; she directs the affiliated PNB School, which enrolls 1,200 students a year. Her graduates now account for half the ballet company and scores of artists in modern and other forms of dance.

Dan Sullivan. Playwright Arthur Lawrents calls him "the best director I've ever worked with." Seattle Rep's artistic director selects plays adventurously and stages them inventively; he's the main creative force in the region's theater scene and a reason for its national reputation.

Peter Taggares. There's a pretty good chance he made the potatoes that made the french fries that came with your burger. He was one of the first farmers to settle the Columbia Basin half a century ago; now his 50,000-acre Adams County potato operation is the state's biggest farm and helps make Washington the nation's second leading potato state.

George Taylor. The founder of the Asian Studies program at the UW's Jackson School is now what they used to call "an old China hand." His influence helped open China as a U.S. trading partner, create the notion of the Pacific Rim and establish international trade as a Washington state specialty.

E. Donnall Thomas. In two decades of pioneering work at the University of Washington and Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, he created the technique of transplanting bone marrow to treat cancer patients. And when he won the Nobel Prize for Medicine in 1990, he gave his $350,000 share of the prize to the Hutch for more research.

Bob Walsh. He dreams big, talks big and - like the clutch athlete he never was - delivers under pressure. Skeptics be damned, he brought the Goodwill Games and NCAA Final Four basketball to Washington. Now he's talking about hosting the 2004 or 2008 Olympics at venues in Seattle, Vancouver and Portland. This time there are fewer skeptics.

Jim Whittaker. The REI card could almost double as the Northwest membership badge. Thank Whittaker, mountain climber turned marketing genius. He was president of Recreational Equipment Inc. as the co-op became a fashion and lifestyle statement, as well as a good place to buy a crampon.

Hazel Wolf. She keeps proving that age is no barrier to influence. Now in her late 90s, the lifelong conservationist and ultraliberal political activist is still an avid backpacker; she's secretary of the Audubon Society and advises the state Rainbow Coalition and other groups on the politics of the environment.

Ruth Woo. A superb listener who began as Dan Evans' receptionist, she's respected across the political spectrum. She helped make Asian Americans a political force, and has advised candidates from Democrat Gary Locke to Republican Dan McDonald. Evans has called her the most pivotal person in state politics.

Bagley and Virginia Wright. From the top of the Space Needle, which he helped build, there's a pretty good view of this couple's contributions: Bagley Wright Theatre, home of Seattle Rep (the company he founded); the Seattle Art Museum (they helped build and direct it); Pioneer Square (her Current Editions Gallery helped make the neighborhood an art center); and a lot of public art, including at Myrtle Edwards Park, the UW, Seattle Center and downtown. That's only a beginning: They are the state's most influential supporters of the arts.

Mark Matassa is a Pacific staff writer. Harley Soltes is Pacific's staff photographer.

Published Correction Date: 07/16/95 - Cartoonist Gary Larson's Name Was Misspelled In This Pacific Magazine Article. -- Published Correction Date: 07/19/95 - Dr. Belding Scribner Is A Pioneer In Kidney Dialysis At The University Of Washington. His Medical Contributions Were Incorrectly Listed In This Article.

Copyright (c) 1995 Seattle Times Company, All Rights Reserved.


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