PNW Mike Check Episode #6: Samantha St. John - Kirkland Chamber Of Commerce
February 16, 2021
Our guest this month was Kirkland native, Samantha St. John. For over a decade Samantha has served her community as CEO of the Kirkland Chamber. Prior to her current role, she held a variety of jobs, including senior VP and CMO for Veridian Data Corporation, which helped prepare her for her role within the chamber.
Among her many responsibilities at the chamber, Samantha is passionate about being involved in local legislation for her community. She tells us that this unique year presents a lot of legislative challenges, but that does not stop her! The issues include transportation for the Eastside, housing reform, budget and taxes, and really importantly this year economic revitalization. One point in particular that she is working to help change is condo liability reform. She explains that condos provide an entry way for people to get into homeownership and become invested in their community, rather than just being transient renters.
Samantha also elaborates on the importance of Seattle to the Eastside. If you are from Kirkland and you are asked where you are from while traveling, you will most likely say “the Seattle area”. So whether we realize it or not we are heavily tied to Seattle on a global scale. This affects us because they are the major city we are tied to, because of this you will see many Eastside cities leaning on Seattle for policy changes.
Reflecting on the past year, Samantha tells the story of how she joined efforts with the city of Kirkland to quickly provide the first economic support package of its kind anywhere in the nation. Unaware of what was to come, she still understood that there was an immediate need for businesses in the community. With the help of Google and other local businesses, they were able to get the checks out to businesses that needed it most the first week of April. Overall they were able to fund $500,000 of relief for businesses to use however they needed. Looking forward in 2021, Samantha sees a big surge in the local economy by the end of the year.
We are so thankful for all Samantha and the chamber do for our community. If you are interested in learning more about how to get involved visit KirklandChamber.org
Our goal at Windermere Kirkland is to be a resource for the community. Aside from helping you buy or sell your home, our team is dedicated to adding value to our city. Every other Tuesday we will be posting a blog post highlighting different people, businesses, communities, and more throughout Kirkland. Stay tuned!