Summer of (Civic) Love: Seattle CityClub’s Plans for Civic Engagement in 2024

Dear Supporter,

After successfully hitting the “Refresh” button in 2023, our team at Seattle CityClub knew that 2024 would be a year of continued growth and deeper connections with the Greater Seattle region. From local elections and planning debates for statewide offices to expanding our civic engagement reach, we have learned how to do a lot of civic good with fewer resources than before—a lot!

We kicked off January with our annual Legislative Preview in a packed room at Columbia Tower Club. Our panel included House Majority Leader Joe Fitzgibbon (D), House Republican Leader Drew Stokesbary (R), Senate Republican Leader John Braun (R), and Senate Deputy Majority Leader Manka Dhingra (D), along with our moderators, Drew Mikkelsen, KING 5 News South Bureau Chief and Hana Kim, Evening News Reporter, FOX13.

Panelists and moderators at Legislative Preview 2024

From February to March, we started our 2024 Civic Cocktail season at The Collective Seattle with a two-part Democracy and Technology series. With the rapid rise and influence of technology in our lives and society in general, we posed the question of “How do we balance its promise and peril, especially in our civic life?” Part 1 focused on navigating disinformation and cybersecurity in civic life, whereas Part 2 was centered around the promise and peril of Artificial Intelligence.

In April, we launched our first-ever Civically Engaged Youth Council (CEYC). The CEYC is comprised of those aged 15 – 24 years old across Western and Central Washington. Led by its peers, the CEYC will be provided opportunities to examine the value and impediments of free speech; discuss and learn about national and international issues of critical importance; and be challenged to discover ways in which they can actively participate in public life.

“Everyone has a mental health.” This is why our May Civic Cocktail focused on Mental Health Awareness Month, which was an enlightening evening as we explored crucial questions surrounding mental health and its impact on our communities. Our panels discussed new city, regional, and state responses to the mental health crisis, including initiatives like Seattle CARE and legislative policies, as well as mental health treatment, education, and prevention, with a spotlight on youth, BIPOC, and marginalized communities.

In June, before going into our Summer programming break and in the midst of an impending election season, our Civic Cocktail will feature gaining practical strategies for navigating difficult conversations, develop a deeper understanding of the importance of civil dialogue in a democratic society, and leave feeling empowered to engage with diverse perspectives in your community.

We also started a podcast called Civically Speaking, which features one-on-one discussions with civic, community, neighborhood, and elected leaders across the region. During the summer and leading up to the Primary election, the podcast will focus on those running for elected offices. You can view the podcast playlist here.

Seattle CityClub is already moving full speed ahead with several more events in the works. While Civic Cocktail will return in September, we are also planning to convene debates for statewide offices in our partnership with the Spokesman-Review. Our goal is to convene Gubernatorial, Attorney General, and U.S. Senate debates on both sides of the state, which are always free for the public to attend or view.

In a full circle moment, as Seattle CityClub was selected to host the Public Forum for Seattle City Council vacancy last January, we will also host a Seattle City Council Position 8 debate later this year.

The board and staff at Seattle CityClub are grateful for the partnerships that have helped us continue this work in challenging financial times for nonprofits such as ours. We still need your help to continue our mission of informing, connecting, and engaging the public to strengthen the civic health of our region. None of the achievements we’ve made this year could have happened without your support. We are kicking off our 2024 Summer of (Civic) Love campaign this month, and there are a few ways you can join us:

Become A CEO* Member: This membership allows individuals and everyone in your organization to attend our monthly Civic Cocktail throughout the year, meet and greet event speakers, and special discounts for other Seattle CityClub programs and events. Memberships range from $100 (individual) to $500-$2,000 (organization, depending on size). Our introductory rates will end in September.

Make A Gift: By making a monthly gift, your support creates space for critical discourse on issues that matter. Take a stand for an informed community, respectful civic dialogue, and leader access and accountability. Learn more about the various ways you can make a gift by clicking here.

Thank you for your continued support.


In Community, 

Alicia Crank 

Executive Director