J. Thomas Ranken, President and CEO

Tom Ranken

J. Thomas Ranken

Tom is the President & CEO of the Washington Clean Technology Alliance. Under Tom’s leadership, the WCTA’s membership has grown to over 250 companies, research institutions, and other organizations. The WCTA has developed a value proposition that includes advocacy, events, communications, business services, and industrial connections.

Prior to joining the WCTA, Tom was a Seattle-based entrepreneur and management consultant. Tom co-founded and was CEO of VizX Labs, a bioinformatics company that developed GeneSifter, the first web-based gene expression microarray analysis service now used worldwide by hundreds of labs. Tom also led a team that turned around and doubled the size of Axio Research Corporation following significant losses, which was later sold to Solutia. He directed public affairs at the state’s largest biotechnology company, Immunex (now Amgen), and was President of the Washington Biotechnology & Biomedical Association. He spent seven years in banking.

In the 1990s, Tom was elected Chair of the national Council of State Bioscience Associations. He was Chair of the DC-based Biotechnology Industry Organization’s State Government Committee, was instrumental in crafting the highly successful state affiliate strategy, and was elected to the Emerging Companies Section of BIO’s Board. He was also a key player in the Washington Biotechnology & Biomedical Association for many years as Chair of the Board, Chair of the Government Affairs Committee, member of the Board, and as President for three years.

Tom spent fourteen years as a Trustee of Harborview Medical Center including serving as President of the Board. He has served on the Boards of VizX Labs, Axio Research, the Technology Alliance, the University Sunrise Rotary Club (President), Seattle Mental Health (Chair), and the Crisis Clinic. He currently is Treasurer of the Washington News Council board and is Moderator of the Magnolia United Church of Christ Coordinating Council. An Eagle Scout, Tom spent five years as Scoutmaster of Boy Scout Troop 80 and now serves on the Aurora District Committee as Finance Chair. At last count, 40 of the Scouts in Tom’s troop had made Eagle, including his son.

Tom has an MBA from the University of Washington and a BA in economics from the University of Virginia. His MBA thesis was “U.S. Petroleum Dependence and Energy Alternatives.”

On weekends, he can often be found playing his guitar or camping with the Boy Scouts.  His personal website can be found here.

Sharon Schierle

Sharon Schierle

Sharon Schierle, Event Planning and Operations:  Sharon began her career travelling the globe installing computer systems and training employees for Marriott International Inc.  After discovering there’s no better place to live than Seattle, she returned home to open the Woodmark Hotel on Lake Washington.  Upon the realization that all hotels are open 24/7, she left the hotel business to work for a public affairs and marketing consulting firm.  Sharon eventually went to work full-time for one of her clients, the Washington Biotechnology & Biomedical Association (WBBA), leading to more than a decade’s work in the biotech and biomedical fields.  Most recently, Sharon worked for the mayor of the City of Lynnwood as an Outreach Aide bringing together constituents, employees, and the community-at-large to work on a number of special projects throughout the City.  The common thread woven throughout her diverse work experience is providing exceptional service which continues to be her goal at the WCTA.

Kelsey Miller

Kelsey Miller

Kelsey Miller, Program Coordinator:  Kelsey is a graduate from the University of Washington with a Bachelor of Arts in International Studies. While attending UW, Kelsey dedicated her time as the Social Vice President of the Jackson School Student Association to planning events of varying sizes in order to help engage students, faculty, and professionals in the community and in academia.  In 2011, she traveled to Quito, Ecuador to study Latin American history and literature and worked as a teacher’s assistant in Fundacion Entrega, a private pre-school for children in Quito.  Kelsey has worked as the Event and Program Intern for the Seattle Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce where she assisted in pre-event planning, marketing and registration, at-event implementation and post-event follow up for monthly networking and workshop events.  She was singly responsible for soliciting, procuring, and organizing donations for the 19th Annual Virginia Mason-Seattle Chamber Golf Classic silent auction with a high volume of quality auction packages.



Eric Viola

Eric Viola

Eric Viola, Public Policy AnalystEric Viola graduated from Boston University in 2013, where he simultaneously completed his BA and MA in Political Science, focusing on public policy analysis.  He is beginning his career in public policy analysis, and hopes to continue to work in energy and technology policy.



Interns that have worked with us:

  • Joe Meyer, Intern 2011:  Joe is graduating from Western Washington University studying economics/environmental studies. He was appointed by Washington State Senator Maria Cantwell to serve as a US Senate Page. Joe is an Eagle Scout from Boy Scout Troop 80 in Seattle. He worked as a summer intern for WCTA and lifeguard at Pop Mounger Pool.
  • Michelle Ranken, Intern 2011:  Michelle will be graduating from the University of Washington. She is majoring in political science and plans to attend law school after completing her undergraduate degree. She studied in the International Baccalaureate program in high school and played competitive volleyball for her high school and for club teams.
  • Lynn Coppedge, Intern 2012:  Lynn is majoring in Sustainability and Urban Planning at Arizona State University. After graduating, she plans to complete her Master’s Degree in Urban and Environmental Planning at ASU’s graduate college.

Events & Meetings