Go to Top
Call Us: (206) 461-3792

Board of Directors

Leesa Manion
Chairwoman

Leesa Manion is the Chief of Staff to King County Prosecuting Attorney Dan Satterberg, a position she has held since 2007. In this position, Leesa serves as the chief administrative officer for the office, which employs more than 240 attorneys, 254 staff, and has a budget of over $60 million.  In addition to overseeing a wide range of fiscal, human resources, legislative, and internal and external communications and policy issues, Leesa oversees a variety of youth and justice programs, including the office's Truancy and Dropout Prevention Program and the 180 Program, which is a community-based, pre-filing juvenile diversion program designed to keep youth out of the criminal justice system by inspiring them to make positive choices with support from their community. She has also recently spearheaded a number of projects aimed at reducing disproportionality within in the criminal justice system, a major initiative launched by the King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office in the last few years. Leesa is a graduate of Seattle University School of Law.  She also serves on the Executive Committee for the Washington State Bar Association's Criminal Law Section, and is member of the Asian Bar Association of Washington and Washington Women Lawyers. Outside of work, Leesa enjoys entertaining, reading, and spending time with her two young children.


Rashelle Tanner
Vice Chair

Rashelle is an attorney in Microsoft’s Litigation, Competition & Compliance Group and is responsible for the values-based compliance training program for Microsoft’s Office of Legal Compliance.  She also creates Microsoft's annual Standards of Business Conduct course with innovative delivery methods uniquely designed for retention.  This annual course is translated into 17 languages and is required learning for all company employees.

Prior to Microsoft, Rashelle was General Counsel for CRISTA Ministries for more than 12 years, and implemented an organization-wide compliance program for the 2000+ employee international non-profit where she served in the dual function as Chief Compliance Officer.  Additionally, as Senior Vice President, she regularly participated in business strategy while being responsible for corporate and board governance, legal affairs, and compliance in the areas of long term care, international relief and development, media broadcasting and education.

Rashelle serves on the boards of CRISTA Ministries (Executive Board), Urban League of Metropolitan Seattle (Vice Chair) and Girls Can Do.  She is a speaker and Advisory Board Member for Momentum A.C.E.S. which explores intersections of anti-bribery, anti-corruption, international trade and sanctions compliance challenges on a global regulatory scale.

Rashelle is a graduate of Leadership Tomorrow 2012.  She is licensed to practice in Washington State and has been sworn-in and admitted for practice before the Western District of Washington as well as the Supreme Court of the United States.


George Stewart
Treasure


Keely Brown
Secretary

Keely Brown is the Immediate Past President of the Seattle Urban League Young Professionals and current National Urban League Young Professionals' Western Regional Vice President. Keely is employed with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers as a Water Resources Planner and as a Program Manager in which she reduces floods risks to local communities, restores degrading ecosystems, and ensures Corps completed projects are not adversely impacted by other Federal or non-Federal works. Keely earned her Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from Florida A&M University and her Master of Science in Planning and a Master of Public Administration from Florida State University. As a tenured planner, Keely enjoys increasing the economic vitality of communities, ensuring public safety, and establishing sustainable communities.


Robert M. Williams
Immediate Past Chair

Union Bank Director – CRA LOANS & INVESTMENTS MANAGER CORPORATE SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY for the Americas

Executive responsible for the risk management, monitoring, compliance, reporting and review of the CRA Investment and Loan Portfolios. Perform strategic analysis to deliver complex, technical products across multiple business and functional lines within the organization. Establish the objectives and goals for the organization in alignment with the overall Corporate Social Responsibility for the Americas (CSRA) business strategies and the long-term objectives of the bank. Responsible for identifying the appropriate balance of investments and loan commitments based on community needs and corporate objectives.

Achieve organization objectives through close collaboration and interaction with the bank's senior executives in the Lending, Investment Administration, Legal, Risk Management and CRA Strategy groups.

Actively participate in leadership roles within community organizations in our markets. Key contact with banking regulatory agencies

He has a finance degree from Washington State University and was a four year varsity letterman Track & Field.  He is a graduate of the Pacific Coast Banking School.  He is also involved in the following groups: National Board of Advisors – College of Business - Washington State University, Past President – Washington State University Alumni Association, Trustee of the Washington State University Foundation, Board Chair-Urban League of Metropolitan Seattle and Past Board President of the Pacific Northwest United Negro College Fund.

Robert, a Seattle native enjoys golf, fitness training and traveling.


Nate Miles
Immediate Past Board Chairman

Nate Miles is the Vice President for Strategic Initiatives for Eli Lilly and Company. Nate has spent nearly thirty years building coalitions among some of the most diverse populations to support healthcare initiatives and affect change. Nate leads concept, development and flawless implementation of innovative and highly effective strategic initiatives  to generate sound public policy and brand support from traditional and non-traditional allies such as grassroots organizations, Faith based organizations, Communities of Color, labor organizations, civil rights and social justice non-governmental organizations.


Walle Ralkowski
Emeritus Board Chairman

Walle Ralkowski is a retired construction executive having the responsibility for the marketing and operations of commercial construction projects in the Seattle region and throughout North America including Hawaii and Puerto Rico. He is a Seattle native, graduated from the University of Washington, is a former Marine and served many years on the Board of Directors for the Urban League of Metropolitan Seattle.


Gina Hall
Board Member

Gina Hall is the Development Director at Seattle Goodwill Industries where she plays an integral role in developing and implementing the fundraising strategies for one of this region’s largest non-profit social enterprises.  Her experience also includes directing one of West Seattle’s largest capital campaigns called the three projects│one community campaign.  She has also developed and implemented numerous fundraising programs which include transitioning campaign donors to annual donors; major gifts programs, annual giving, grant writing, and direct mail campaigns.  She has over 15 years of experience in the non-profit sector.  Gina has a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Phoenix; is married; has a blended family and believes that healthy families are the foundation to a healthy community.


Sue Taoka
Board Member

Sue Taoka is currently an Executive Vice President at Craft3, a nonprofit, non-bank community development financial institution.  For 14 years prior she served as Executive Director of the Seattle Chinatown International District Preservation and Development Authority (SCIDpda), the major property management and community development organization in the Chinatown International District.  Before that she served as the Deputy Chief of Staff to Mayor Norm Rice for housing, economic and community development, neighborhoods, parks, and libraries. She was a founding member of the National Coalition of Asian Pacific American Community, member of the 4 Culture real estate advisory committee, member of the Emerald Cities Seattle policy group and a member of the Washington State Bar Association.


Denita Price, SPHR
Board Member

Denita Price, a Human Resources leader and business partner with over 13 years of experience in multi-unit Operations, Corporate and Field Human Resources across diverse industries. A reputation as a consummate professional with a genuine desire and ability to connect with people to achieve performance based relationships. Particularly skilled in balancing strategic and operational issues, facilitating leadership development and advancement, and delivering organizational outcomes; all partnered with a balanced, authentic perspective and an attitude of “whatever you’re committed to, be remarkable at it!”


Kia C. Franklin
Board Member

Kia C. Franklin is an education advocate with a passion for equity and social justice, and a background in policy advocacy, direct youth services, and legal services. Kia currently serves as a Partnership Director for Equal Opportunity Schools, where she works with school districts and high school administrators to increase access to academically rigorous courses for students of color and low income students. Prior to that she has worked for other high impact organizations including TAF (formerly known as Technology Access Foundation), the Urban League of Metropolitan Seattle, and The Drum Major Institute for Public Policy. Kia is a Seattle native and she earned her Bachelor's Degree from Stanford University and her law degree from Georgetown University.


Aaron Johnson
Board Member

A resident of Renton, Washington area since April of 2003, Aaron Johnson earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical Engineering from North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University located in Greensboro North Carolina and is the Director of Engineering & Maintenance for the Northwest District at United Parcel Service. Starting his career with UPS in Greensboro North Carolina, Aaron has worked for UPS in the Engineering department for 30 years.


Robert Saka
Board Member

Rob Saka is a technology and business attorney at Perkins Coie, Seattle.  He focuses his practice on matters involving highly complex technology transactions, licensing, data security and privacy. Rob represents public and private companies in connection with the their intellectual property and related technology assets.  Additionally, Rob has experience drafting, structuring and negotiating a wide array of commercial agreements, including those related to cloud computing, confidentiality, healthcare, big data, the Internet of Things, open-source software licensing and compliance, advertising and digital marketing.  Prior to law school, Rob served for 10 years as an Intelligence Officer in the Air Force Reserves.  He is a veteran of the Iraq War, having deployed in support of the “troop surge” of 2007. In his spare time, Rob enjoys competitive distance running and is a qualifier-finisher of the 2013 Boston Marathon.  Rob is a graduate of Kent-Meridian High School, the University of Washington and the University of California, Hastings College of the Law.


Cindi Bright
Board Member

Cindi Bright is the Founder and President of The Bright Group, a management consulting firm specializing in the development of organizations and people to facilitate the progress of women and underrepresented people into leadership roles.  The Bright Group provides leadership and organization development services, individual and team coaching, assessment of racial temperature inside of companies and culture change work. Cindi has spent the past 25 years in Fortune 500 companies working in leadership roles where she focused on leadership, workplace culture, organization development and personal development of people.  She is a strong believer in people. Cindi has an Certificate from Kellogg University School of Business in the Soul of Leadership and an Executive MBA from Foster School of Business, University of Washington.


Ray Ishii
Board Member

Ray Ishii is the owner of Ishii & Associates, LLC. Ishii is a CPA with over 30 years’ experience. Ishii provides tax, accounting and business consulting services to individuals, small businesses and non-profit organizations. Ishii has extensive experience assisting clients with tax planning and tax compliance issues, business planning, and strengthening accounting and internal control systems. As CFO of several non-profit organizations Ishii has extensive senior management experience including strategic planning, systems development and complex project financing. Ishii has been an adjunct professor at Seattle University for over 12 years teaching both undergraduate and graduate tax and accounting courses.


Jonathan J. Bridge
Board Member

Jon Bridge is Co-Chief Executive Officer and General Counsel for Ben Bridge Jeweler, Inc., a Seattle based retail firm with 90 stores in 11 states and the province of British Columbia.  A Seattle native, he’s a graduate of Garfield High School.  He graduated Magna Cum Laude with an Honors Degree in Economics from the University of Washington in 1972 and earned his Juris Doctor from the UW Law School in 1976.  

Among his many civic endeavors, he’s Co-Chair of the Military Lawyers Committee of the GP/Solo Division of the American Bar Association and Past Chair of the Alliance for Education.  He’s on the Boards of Jewelers Mutual Insurance Company, Jewelers of America Political Action Committee, the Metropolitan Seattle Urban League (where he is a Past Chair), the Association of Washington Business, Kids Company, the Confucius Institute of Washington State and the Washington State Courts Historical Society.  He’s Chair of the local Navy Recruiting District Assistance Council as well as a retired Navy Captain in the JAG Corps.  Jon is Past Chair of the LAMP Section of the Washington State Bar Association, Past Co-Chair (along with father Herb) of the United Way of King County’s Annual Campaign and former President of the Washington State Chapter of the American Jewish Committee. He is also a member of Seattle Rotary.

Jon is married to Bobbe Bridge, a retired Justice of the Washington State Supreme Court who is currently the Founding President and CEO of the Center for Children and Youth Justice.  They have two adult children, Don (married to Sarah) and Rebecca (married to Evan), and two granddaughters, Chloé and Emma.


Diem Ly
Board Member

Diem Ly is the Director of Community Investment and External Affairs for Comcast NBCUniversal working in public relations, government affairs, and community investment. Prior to this role, she served as the Editor in Chief of the Seattle-based Asian Pacific American nonprofit news outlet, the International Examiner, for five years. She also worked as a Morning News Writer for Northwest Cable News and at the assignment desk at King 5 News.

Before her journalism career, she was a researcher at the Veteran’s Administration of Puget Sound PTSD clinic studying women veterans.


Kwesi Oti Peprah
Board Member

Oti is an employee at Boeing, where he currently works as a Senior Contracts & Pricing Specialist with Boeing’s Intellectual Property Management business. Previously, he worked in the construction and real estate industry, where he held positions the position of a Project Engineer and Cost Estimator. In addition, he has worked in the retail and consumer goods industry as a Credit.

Oti holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Building Technology from University of Science and Technology  in Ghana. He also holds a Master of Public Administration degree with a concentration in Economics and Financial Policy from Cornell University in Ithaca, NY as well as a Master of Business Administration with a focus on Strategy and Finance from INSEAD in France and Singapore.

Outside of Boeing, Oti enjoys taking road trips, photography, working on home remodeling projects


Kalila Griffin
Board Member

Kalila Griffin is a Student Success Liaison with Communities in Schools of Renton. She provides advocacy, support services, and referrals to students and families at McKnight Middle School. Previously, Kalila worked for the YWCA of Seattle as a Career Navigator. In this position, she assisted adults going through vocational training programs to acquire livable wage careers at Seattle Vocational Institute, Seattle Central College, and North Seattle College. She has also served as an AmeriCorps member with College Access Now, as a 12th grade college coach at Franklin High School. In this position, she assisted students through the entire college application process and navigating the Free Application for Federal Student Aid.

She holds a Bachelor of Arts in English from Seattle University and is a Seattle native who loves going out and enjoying the diversity of food in the city. This is her first board position.


Kendra C. Smith
Board Member

Kendra C. Smith is a native Texan, born and raised in Dallas. Professionally she is a Boeing Commercial Airplanes (BCA) Contracts Procurement Agent in the Electrical & Avionics Systems Supplier Management Group. Kendra transferred to the Pacific Northwest from Boeing Defense, Space & Security (BDS) in August of 2014 from the Electronic & Information Solutions (E&IS) business division headquartered near the Washington D.C. area.

August 2016 marked 11 years of service with The Boeing Company for Kendra. She began her career in Southern California as a Business Skills Rotational Program (BSRP) participant.  Where she rotated through the following finance functions and programs: Business Operations on the Future Combat Systems Program (Huntington Beach), Core Estimating & Pricing (Huntington Beach), and Contract Management for the Global Positioning Systems (GPS) Program (Seal Beach) and later accepted a permanent position on the Wideband Global SATCOM (WGS) Program located in El Segundo, CA before moving to Virginia in 2011 as a Government Contracts Administrator.

She is a member of the Junior League of Seattle and the Urban League of Metropolitan Seattle Guild, where she serves as the Vice President. Most recently she was accepted into the United Way of King County’s Project LEAD program, a leadership training program that prepares highly qualified people of color to serve effectively on nonprofit boards.

Kendra earned a dual degree in International Business and Japanese Studies from Dillard University and a Masters in Business Administration from Pepperdine University.


Shawn Mcwashington
Board Member

Shawn McWashington currently oversees all aspects of corporate business development at HomeStreet Bank. In his business development role, he is responsible for coordinating the delivery of HomeStreet resources, working with various client teams, developing marketplace strategies, and crafting solutions for businesses to deploy capital to grow their bottom line. Shawn is also involved with aspects of governmental relations, and various senior level special projects.

A former professional football player and radio analyst whom completed his PhD coursework at Florida State University, Shawn brings more than 12 years of professional experience developing and building relationships with some of the nation’s principal business leaders. He is also involved in the local community and sits on the board of directors of Communities in Schools Washington, The Urban League of greater Seattle, and the Lenny Wilkens Foundation.


George Allen
Board Member

George Allen works for Coca-Cola North America (CCNA) as the Director of Public Affairs and Communications. George leads all legislative and community engagement activities for CCNA in the Pacific Northwest. Prior to working for Coca-Cola, George ran a local lobbying enterprise with clients including the Seattle Mariners and many others. George has enjoyed 27 years as a regional government and community relations professional including eight years as the Senior Vice President for Government Relations for the Seattle Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce and chief of staff positions for Seattle City and King County councilmembers. Over the years George has developed an extensive network of local business, community and governmental associates and received recognition for his work including Tabor 100’s Crystal Eagle Award in 2011.

George is deeply honored to be considered for a Board position with the Urban League of Metropolitan Seattle and to have the chance to truly empower individuals and transform lives. George has always been an advocate for the Urban League as evidenced in the 2013 Seattle Times article titled, “Urban League bouncing back with fresh leaders, ideas”.  George is quoted as saying, “I think the community at large is taking notice of real solid leadership, with both the CEO and a much more engaged board of directors,” said George Allen, a senior vice president at the Metropolitan Seattle Chamber of Commerce.”

George is a Northwest native and has lived in Seattle for well over 20 years. George enjoys life with his blended family which includes four teenagers: two sons and two amazing step-daughters.


Adrienne Hairston
Board Member

Adrienne Hairston is the President of Seattle Urban League Young Professionals.  Adrienne is an Atlanta native, and relocated to Seattle to work for Starbucks company where she currently works as a Senior Project Manager in supply chain. 

Adrienne holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Industrial and Systems Engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology. She also received a Master of Business Administration degree with a concentration in Supply Chain from Tennessee State in 2011. Outside of Starbucks, Adrienne enjoys watching her beloved Atlanta Falcons, hiking, and volunteering. 


Mike Allen
Board Member

Mike Allen is currently a Senior Corporate Counsel in the legal department at Nordstrom, Inc. in Seattle.

Mike received his bachelor’s degree at Georgia State University and his law degree from Georgetown University Law Center. Mike started his legal career at Anderson, Kill & Olick and later served under President Clinton as a government lawyer with the Environmental Enforcement Section of the Department of Justice and later with the International Law Office of the Environmental Protection Agency. He then moved to the Washington, DC offices of K&L Gates, L.L.P.

Following his government and private practice work, Mike moved in-house and served in Senior Attorney roles at both Sprint Nextel Corporation in Virginia and Microsoft Corporation in Redmond, WA.

Mike has served on several boards, including the National Law Center on Homelessness and Poverty, the Center for International Environmental Law, Washington Appleseed, and the Bullitt Foundation.  During the 2012 Presidential election cycle, Mike served as the Operations Director of the Voter Protection/Voter Suppression legal team for the Obama for President Campaign in Florida.

 


Sasha Rabkin
Board Member