History of the Washington Clean Technology Alliance
The Washington Clean Technology Alliance is the largest state trade association of cleantech businesses and supporters in the nation. Founded in 2007 through a collaborative effort of business and economic development interests in the Puget Sound region, we strive to facilitate the generation and growth of cleantech companies, jobs, and products in order to advance the state’s position as a leader in cleantech.
The Washington Clean Technology Alliance was founded in response to a growing need in the region for an organization advocating and working for the emerging set of industries known collectively as cleantech, green tech, or environmental technologies.
In November 2004, the Puget Sound Regional Council (PSRC) launched the Prosperity Partnership, a broad-based coalition dedicated to the development and implementation of a regional economic strategy based on a two-pronged approach: (1) Rebuild the region’s economic foundations to meet the demands of the changing marketplace, and (2) Identify the unique needs of individual clusters and collaborating regionally to meet those needs. (The PSRC is the region’s transportation, growth management, and economic development planning agency.)
The Prosperity Partnership identified clean technology as one cluster with a strong and growing base of employment across Washington State and revealed the need for a dedicated trade association to support this emerging cleantech cluster.
In 2006, the Washington State Department of Commerce, enterpriseSeattle (now the Economic Development Council of Seattle-King County), and the PSRC co-sponsored a series of workshops and events to build the foundation of the organization. A Steering Committee was formed and a few committed leaders in cleantech stepped forward to become the Charter members of the Washington Clean Technology Alliance.
David Allen of McKinstry was elected the WCTA’s first Chair in 2007. In 2010, Bill McSherry of Boeing succeeded him as Chair. Kirt Montague of Plum Energy was elected Chair in January of 2012. In 2010, Tom Ranken was appointed the WCTA’s first full-time executive.
As of September 2013, the WCTA boasts 226 member companies.