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Puget Sound Economic Summit

Creating Inclusive Cities Through Tourism


Louise Chernin

President & CEO, Greater Seattle Business Association

GSBA is one of the oldest and is the largest LGBTQ Chambers in North America with over 1400 members. In addition to business development and advocacy on behalf of business and civil rights, GSBA sponsors a Scholarship Fund, which since 1990, has awarded over $4 million to 500 LGBTQ and allied students in Washington State. GSBA is also the sponsor of Travel Out Seattle, an LGBT Tourism Initiative created to increase revenue in the state of Washington.

In 2015, Louise was appointed by the Governor to the Seattle Colleges Board of Trustees. Among the honors received by Louise was a Leadership Award presented by the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force (NGLTF) and being named by the Puget Sound Business Journal as one of the top 20 most Influential women in Puget Sound.

Alejandro Grajal

President & CEO, Woodland Park Zoo

Alejandro Grajal is the President and CEO of the Woodland Park Zoo in Seattle.He joined in 2016 to become the 8th president in the zoo’s 117-year history. He brings over 30 years of multidisciplinary experience in wildlife conservation, animal welfare and social research. He is particularly interested in exploring the interface between biodiversity conservation, science education, and the social dimensions of conservation actions.He is actively exploring the evolving role of zoos and aquariums in the XXI century. Particularly how zoos reconnect people with animals and nature and how to drive pro-environmental behaviors. Prior to joining the Woodland Park Zoo, he was Senior Vice-President for Conservation and Education at the Chicago Zoological Society. He was the founder and executive director of the Latin America program of the National Audubon Society and before that, he was Director of Latin American and Caribbean Programs at the Wildlife Conservation Society in New York.He has a PhD in Zoology with a minor in International Development. He has worked on protected areas and conservation programs with the US Agency for International Development, the Global Environmental Fund, the World Bank, and the European Union. His book “Climate Change Education: A Primer for Zoos and Aquariums” is one of over 45 books, chapters, popular articles, and scientific publications on ecology, animal behavior, biodiversity policy and visitor studies. He is also an accomplished wildlife artist, with gallery shows in Caracas, Miami, Chicago, New York and Seattle.

Tod Leiweke

CEO, Seattle Kraken

Tod Leiweke is the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) for Seattle Hockey Partners. Leiweke is responsible for building a world-class NHL expansion team. He will also be responsible for the redevelopment of the Arena at Seattle Center. This $1.6B enterprise will be transformative to Seattle Center and is the largest private investment in the history of sports in Seattle.

Prior to being appointed CEO in April 2018, Leiweke served as Chief Operating Officer of the NFL for three years where he oversaw day to day operations of the League. These duties included football operations, international operations, marketing, player health and safety, the NFL Network and strategic planning.
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