Apr 08, 2022
Sharon Brock and Denise Leonhard joined the board of directors at Bellevue-based Symetra. Brock retired as executive vice president and co-chief financial officer of Tokio Marine, where she was responsible for leading financial operations and strategy. Previously, Brock served 18 years with AIG American General, most recently as tax director. Brock is a CPA and a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants. Leonhard is chief commercial officer of Venmo, a mobile payment service owned by PayPal, with responsibility for driving growth and profitability. Leonhard was previously head of global credit expansion, business development and strategy at PayPal. Previously, she was vice president of business development and strategy at American Express and a management consultant at Oliver Wyman. In business since 1957, Symetra provides employee benefits, annuities and life insurance through a national network of benefit consultants, financial institutions, and independent financial professionals and insurance producers.
Craig Wanichek, president and CEO of Summit Bank, announced the hiring of Aaron Walker as chief credit officer. Walker has nearly 30 years of experience in banking, with a balance of senior management positions in commercial real estate and commercial and industrial lending. Most recently, Walker was the manager of commercial real estate lending for Columbia Bank. Before that, he managed C&I teams throughout Oregon for Umpqua Bank. Currently, Walker serves as president of Cascade Capital Funding, a certified development company authorized by the Small Business Administration to serve Oregon’s small business community. Summit Bank has offices in Eugene, central Oregon and downtown Portland.
Apr 07, 2022
Wine Walk beckons NAIOP members
Woodinville is seeing a flurry of new midrise apartment buildings over retail. The newly completed Schoolhouse District, from MainStreet Property Group, is one leading example. And for NAIOP members unfamiliar with the development, or Woodinville itself, there’s an opportunity to tour the district and its designated Wine Walk, on May 12. That’ll also include the apartments and renovated old schoolhouse itself, an over century-old city landmark, which is now home to Walla Walla Steak Co. and Crossbuck Brewing. The tour begins at 4 p.m. Details and info: naiopwa.org.
Commercial Brokers Association
Monica Wallace of Kidder Mathews has been newly appointed to chair the board of the Commercial Brokers Association. She succeeds Brian Hatcher, also from KM, in that role. The 20-year industry veteran has earned numerous accolades over the years. Most recently, GlobeSt Real Estate Forum selected her as a Top Influencer in retail real estate.
Visit Seattle announced the pending retirement of CEO Tom Norwalk in October; his last day in the office came last month. Now Tammy Blount-Canavan has been announced as his successor. She makes the move from the Fired-Up! Culture, a local consultancy. She said in a statement, “I am honored to serve as Visit Seattle’s first female president and CEO. This city has been close to my heart for as long as I can remember. I love Seattle’s beauty, authenticity and culture — the city’s potential is limitless. I am beyond thrilled.”
Amazon announced agreements with Arianespace, Blue Origin, and United Launch Alliance (ULA) to provide heavy-lift launch services for Project Kuiper, Amazon’s initiative to increase global broadband access using a constellation of satellites in low Earth orbit (LEO). The contracts total up to 83 launches over a five-year period, providing capacity for Amazon to deploy the majority of its 3,236-satellite constellation. It is one of the largest commercial procurement of launch vehicles in history. Project Kuiper aims to provide high-speed, low-latency broadband to a wide range of customers, including individual households, schools, hospitals, businesses, government agencies, disaster relief operations, mobile operators, and other organizations working in places without reliable internet connectivity. Amazon is designing and developing the entire system in-house, combining a constellation of advanced LEO satellites with small, affordable customer terminals and a secure ground-based communications network. Amazon has secured 18 Ariane 6 rockets from European spaceline, Arianespace, as part of this initial agreement. Amazon has signed an agreement with Blue Origin to secure 12 launches using New Glenn, with options for up to 15 additional launches. Amazon’s agreement with ULA covers 38 launches on Vulcan Centaur, ULA’s newest heavy-lift launch vehicle. The agreement is in addition to Project Kuiper’s existing deal to secure nine Atlas V vehicles from ULA. There are now more than 1,000 people at Amazon working on Project Kuiper.
Seattle-base POSaBIT Systems, a leading provider of payments infrastructure in the cannabis industry, has brought its point of sale system to New Mexico, coinciding with the start of recreational cannabis sales in the state on April 1. POSaBIT expects to go live in roughly 20 New Mexico dispensaries during the first two months of recreational sales. POSaBIT is a financial technology company that delivers payment processing and point-of-sale systems for cash-only businesses. POSaBIT specializes in resolving pain points for complex, high-risk, emerging industries like cannabis, and providing a safer and transparent environment for merchants while creating a better overall experience for the consumer.
Walmart is giving Washington entrepreneurs the chance to land their products on its shelves and online store. Just a few days remain to apply before the Friday, April 8 deadline. Walmart’s annual Open Call is part of the company’s commitment to spend an additional $350 billion on products made, grown or assembled in the U.S. It’s estimated that this investment will support more than 750,000 new American jobs. Selected participants will have the opportunity to showcase their products during a 30-minute, one-on-one pitch. Participants could secure deals ranging from supplying local stores to supplying hundreds of Walmart locations and showcasing products on Walmart.com. To learn more about Open Call, see “Walmart’s 9th Annual Open Call Application Period” on the Walmart website.