EDITOR’S NOTESouth King Media Founder/Publisher Scott Schaefer serves on the Board of Directors for the Seattle Southside Chamber of Commerce.

The Seattle Southside Chamber of Commerce’s 2024 PNW Education & Workforce Summit – held on Thursday morning, April 25, 2023 – brought together experts, industry leaders, business owners, students and community members to provide insight into the status of the school-to-work pipeline in our region. 

The breakfast event was held at the accesso ShoWare Center in Kent, and included speakers and panel discussions.

Here’s a list of speakers and panel experts:

  • Robert Livingston, Homestreet Bank and Success Foundation Chair
  • Welcome Remarks by City of Kent Mayor, Dana Ralph
  • Keynote by Chris Reykdal, Washington State Superintendent 
  • Panel discussion on the School-to-Work Pipeline, moderated by Arlen Harris, Legislative Director of WA State Board of Community and Technical Colleges, with:
    • Highline Public Schools, Juan Lozano – Principal of PSSC
    • Tukwila Public Schools, Dr. Concie Pedroza – Superintendent
    • Highline College, Gabrielle Bachmeier, Dean of Workforce Partnerships and Extended Learning
    • Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction, Chris Reykdal, Washington State Superintendent 
  • Panel discussion on Planting Seeds for Success: Cultivating the Next Generation of Talent through Mentorship, moderated by Samantha Le, Executive Director of Success Foundation, with:
    • VMFH, Deepak Devasthali, COO
    • BECU, Rafael Saucedo, Philanthropy Program Manager
    • Foster High School Student, Day’Lanie Miller
    • Raisbeck High School Student Tram-Anh Troung
  • Enhancing our Workforce panel discussion moderated by Annie McGrath, CEO of Seattle Southside Chamber:
    • Port Of Seattle Leslie Horton, Aviation Workforce Development Program Manager
    • Alaska Airlines, Makenzie Hertogs, Talent Acquisition Outreach Program Manager
    • Comcast, Terry Davis, Senior Director of Government Affairs
    • Career Connect Washington, Angie Mason-Smith, Program Director – Washington STEM
  • Closing Remarks by Josh Gerstman, Vice President, Highline College Foundation.


Below is edited video shot by Scott Schaefer of the event (running time 1-hour, 45-minutes):

Learn more about the Seattle Southside Chamber here: