Friends guided kayak tour of the Elliott Bay Seawall under the light-penetrating surface.

Image by Rhoades Clark courtesy of DSA.

Who We Are

Waterfront Park is the joint effort of the City of Seattle’s Office of the Waterfront, Friends of Waterfront Seattle, and Seattle Parks & Recreation. Friends of Waterfront Seattle is the City of Seattle’s nonprofit partner helping to build, fund, program, and manage Waterfront Park and ensure its lasting success.

Image by Nicole Dansereau

Image by Nicole Dansereau

Friends of Waterfront Seattle is dedicated to creating and sustaining a Waterfront Park for all. 

Following the public-benefit partnership model, Friends of Waterfront Seattle educates the public about the park and its benefits, raises philanthropic funds to build and support operations of the park, and partners with the City to manage and program the park in perpetuity.

Our goal is to realize the public’s vision for a waterfront park where all communities can share cultural, recreational, and civic experiences in a safe, beautiful environment.

Friends is a founding member of the High Line Network, a movement in cities across the world to reclaim underutilized infrastructure and re-imagine it as public space.

Image by Robert Wade

Image by Robert Wade

The vision for Waterfront Park was conceived through a community‑wide effort.

The design of Waterfront Park was created with community input and collaboration at its core. Programming the park is made possible through consistent collaboration with community partners, and we invite you to get involved. Interested in partnering with Friends?


Mary Bass

Wells Fargo

Carol Binder

Community Volunteer

Tom Byers

Cedar River Group

Chris DeVore

Founders’ Co-op

Gene Duvernoy


Stephanie Ellis-Smith

Phila Engaged Giving

Leonard Forsman

The Suquamish Tribe

Olive Goh

Citi Private Bank

Paul Goodrich

Madrona Venture Group

Patrick Gordon

ZGF Architects LLP

Nicole Grant

MLK Labor

Leslie Hanauer

Nick and Leslie Hanauer Foundation

Sandra Jackson-Dumont

Lucas Museum of Narrative Art

Falona Joy

SNP Strategies, Inc.

Paul Keller

Mack Real Estate Development

Martha Kongsgaard

Kongsgaard-Goldman Foundation

Dan Kully

Kully Struble

Carla Lewis

Community Volunteer

Kyle McCoy

Goldman Sachs

Lori Metcalf

Seattle Academy

Kollin Min

Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

John Nesholm

LMN Architects

Jeannie Nordstrom

Civic Leader and Philanthropist

Stuart Rolfe

Wright Hotels, Inc.

Charley Royer

Former Seattle Mayor

Kayley Runstad Swan

Runstad Foundation

Ryan Smith

Martin Smith, Inc.

Louie Ungaro

The Muckleshoot Tribe

Maggie Walker

The Walker Family Foundation

Brady Piñero Walkinshaw


Charles Wright

Merrill Gardens, LLC


Thatcher Bailey

Interim Executive Director

Blake Bowers

Finance / P&C Administrator

Nicole Dansereau

Director of Communications
206-866-6817 x102

Katheryn Edwards

Executive Assistant

Sarneshea Evans

Community Impact Manager
206-866-6817 x113

Esteban Ginocchio Silva

Data Systems Analyst
206-866-6817 x103

Yoon Kang-O'Higgins

Senior Programs Manager

Aarti Khanna

Sr. Philanthropy Officer, Corporate Partnerships

Marie Kidhe

Senior Community Engagement Manager

Anna O'Donnell

Associate Chief Philanthropy Officer

Anne O'Dowd

Events & Festivals Manager
206-866-6817 x108

Jeff Ozimek

Park Operations & Recreation Manager

Jordan Remington

Community Engagement & Programs Coordinator
206-866-6817 x104

Heather Ryan

Vending & Concessions Lead
206-866-6817 x106

Margie Shurgot

Chief Philanthropy Officer

Joey Smith

Campaign Operations Manager

Lizanne Wicklund

Senior Philanthropy Officer, Individual Giving

Work With Us

The Philanthropy & Stewardship Officer is a key member of the philanthropy team and works in collaboration with colleagues across the organization to engage and steward supporters of Waterfront Park. This newly created role is an opportunity to be part of a growing team that is tasked not only with completing a $200M comprehensive campaign, but with building a robust, community-focused philanthropy program that will sustain Waterfront Park in perpetuity.

Reporting to the Associate Chief Philanthropy Officer, the Philanthropy & Stewardship Officer has two core areas of focus: 1) To create and implement a comprehensive donor stewardship and recognition program to support fundraising goals and activities for Friends’ $200M Campaign for Waterfront Park Seattle; and 2) To serve as a gift officer for FWS; identifying, cultivating, and soliciting a portfolio of prospects and donors that generates five-figure+ gifts.

Friends is seeking a Philanthropy Data Coordinator, an essential position on the Philanthropy Team to provide primary support for the group’s use of the Salesforce database. This position has two principal responsibilities:  1) tracking, entering, and acknowledging philanthropic contributions made to Friends of Waterfront Park Seattle; and 2) ensuring the fidelity of the Salesforce database as an accurate and robust tool for the Philanthropy team.

Working closely with the Philanthropy Operations Manager and the Philanthropy team, this position will maintain and update constituent record information for individuals and organizations, oversee data quality and integrity, analyze data as requested, train team members in best practice use of the database, and assist with integrating other constituent-related systems as the need arises.

This position directly supports the Philanthropy team’s goal to maximize fundraising and constituent engagement with the Friends’ $200 million Waterfront Park Campaign. The Development Data Coordinator directly reports to the Philanthropy Operations Manager and is part of the Philanthropy team.


Download more information on the design, history, and community partners behind Waterfront Park.

Press & Media

Pier 62 Shows Seattle in Its Best Light

Seattle Met
March 2, 2021

View Press

Seattle’s newest waterfront public space has finally opened

Seattle Urbanized
September 21, 2020

View Press

The Future Of Art Is Collaboration: A Conversation With Takiyah Ward

South Seattle Emerald
August 16, 2020

View Press

Salmon swim past downtown along new ‘highway’ for fish
Seattle Times — June 4, 2019

Friends of Waterfront Seattle Incubates Small Business to Promote Equity March 2019
Puget Sound Business Journal — March 14, 2019

New study: Waterfront park is Seattle’s new weapon to retain tech talent
Puget Sound Business Journal — March 11, 2019

A Bold New Waterfront Is Coming to Seattle Soon
Seattle Magazine — March 1, 2019

Waterfront Park fits how Seattle lives, works
Daily Journal of Commerce — February 28, 2019

Opinion: Shared investments show Seattle at its best
Puget Sound Business Journal — February 20, 2019

Will we really have a ‘Waterfront for All’?
Daily Journal of Commerce — December 5, 2018

For media inquiries, please contact [email protected].


Friends of Waterfront Seattle deeply values our partnerships with local nonprofits, foundations, government entities, corporations, and organizations that make our work possible.

Are you interested in joining our robust list of partners that program and steward Waterfront Park?

What do you want to see, eat, and do on the waterfront?

Want to plan an event? Have an idea for an activity? We want to hear from you! Waterfront Park is committed to serving the needs of its diverse communities through cultural, educational, and recreational activities in a beautiful, welcoming environment.