The new RPCCV leader of Sea.citi, a nonprofit that aims to engage Seattle tech workers with civic life
Terrance Stevenson (Armenia 2012-14 & PC Staff 2015-19) is bringing his passion for peace-building, community development, and innovation to the Seattle tech industry. Stevenson this week was named director of Sea.citi, a nonprofit that launched in 2018 and aims to help tech workers engage with civic issues. It focuses on issues such as housing affordability, climate change, transportation infrastructure and digital equity.
How did you end up landing this gig?
Terrance Stevenson: I began my career as a Peace Corps volunteer in Armenia. Living and working in this beautiful, conflict-affected country — where I had to learn a new language and culture as a starting point for community service — sparked my passion for peacebuilding, community development, and innovation. I’ve been blessed to find career opportunities that bridge these passions and a city (Seattle) that encompasses them as well. I found that the SeaCiti director role uniquely aligned my skills, experience, and passions with my desire to support Seattle, and I am so thrilled to step into this role as director.
What are your goals this year for SeaCiti? How are you measuring success?
Depending on where you’re coming from and where you’re settling within Seattle, the city can seem both overwhelming and siloed for workers relocating to the area. SeaCiti has an amazing opportunity to be a resource to our diverse tech community and city. A major goal of mine is to develop and highlight resources throughout the city that benefit the people who make up our vibrant tech sector while supporting the city’s economic development. Communication and feedback from our beneficiaries will help us gauge our success and understand areas of improvement.
How do you describe what SeaCiti does, and its mission?
I think of SeaCiti as a lighthouse that will highlight equitable and inclusive community resources, dialogues, and events to guide our vibrant and diverse tech community from all over the state and nation, to reach our amazing city. SeaCiti sits within the WTIA, and our mission is to build a robust, equity-centered technology sector that empowers thriving communities. We create transformative programs that leverage the collective power of our member companies and their employees. We create forums for industry, academia, and government to partner effectively. The relaunch of SeaCiti will be initially focused on supporting the efforts of the One Seattle Civic Partnership through coordinated communications and collaboration and event curation that reconnects us to each other.
What role should the tech industry in Seattle play in helping fix the city’s problems, some of which can be attributed to the industry’s growth, like affordability?
Our tech industry is one player on a large team that must continue to work collaboratively to advance our great city and make it a safe, beautiful, and inclusive place. I look forward to working with cross-sector players to build sustainable solutions that improve our city and support its communities within the tech sector and beyond.
What are your thoughts on remote work, and whether tech employees should get back in the office to help spur activity in Seattle?
It is clear that remote work will remain a more prevalent part of the work ecosystem. Employees have shared that it provides much-needed balance and equity while providing solutions to important issues like transportation, childcare, etc. As a supporter of remote work, I also acknowledge that we must encourage ways to be more creative with our work environments. Seattle must reimagine a downtown where people meet, mentor, and connect, and I am excited to contribute to solutions that address both of these needs.