City of Edmonds seeks applicants for Economic Development Commission

The City of Edmonds Citizens Economic Development Commission has openings that will become available at the end of March.

“Promoting economic activity in Edmonds enhances our quality of life and creates jobs,” said Mayor Mike Nelson. “Our Economic Development Commissioners provide valuable advice on many issues before the city council, staff and the mayor.”

The appointed commissioners will serve in a volunteer capacity for a term running until March 31, 2024.

The city encourages women, people of color and other minorities to apply for commission service. Citizens interested in serving on the Citizens Economic Development Commission must fill out and submit the official city application form at

Commissioners must be residents of Edmonds. Applications are due by 4:30 p.m., Friday, April 1, 2022.

For more information, visit the Economic Development Commission webpage.

  1. Exactly what does an Economic Development Commissioner do and why do we need them? Is Edmonds having trouble attracting viable business’s, visitors to our town, or people wanting to move here? Do we have some shortage of restaurants, coffee shops and retail establishments that needs to be overcome? Are we lacking in developers who want to build apartment buildings, condos and houses on every vacant spot available whether appropriate or not? The mayor says “they provide valuable advice on many issues.” That’s a pretty general job description and perhaps we should ask for a little better effort on communicating exactly what an Economic Development Commissioner actually does and why? Don’t we already have an Economic Development Manager or Dept. Head of some sort? Seems like we are working awfully hard to create a bunch of positions we might not really need or don’t serve much real purpose; while not getting other things done that need to be done.

  2. Here are some helpful hints about applying for the Economic Development Commission and some points about what the Commission is chartered to do. Mayor Nelson said it well, “Promoting economic activity in Edmonds enhances our quality of life and creates jobs,” said Mayor Mike Nelson. “Our Economic Development Commissioners provide valuable advice on many issues before the city council, staff and the mayor.”

    Careful when navigating on the City web site, if you click on “Boards and Commissions” openings you will not see the EDC listed. No worries there are 4 commission position up for appointment. If you are on the “Openings” page you can just click on any one of the Boards that say “application” or you can go to this link for an application.

    If you follow the link to the “Economic Development Commission webpage” you will go the Cities main page and you will need to navigate to the EDC webpage or you can go to this link:

    Economic Development Commission – City of Edmonds, WA (

    Note that Council Member Susan Paine has replaced Ms Olson and Port Commissioner Angela Harris has replace Bruce Farris.

    Clinton and others have asked about the role of the EDC and you can best see aspects of on the webpage on the left side. Details about the Strategic Action Plan, 5-Corners Study, Westgate Study, and others show some of what the EDC has done. To get a glimpse of what is on the EDC’s plate now either navigate to the Packet for the March 16th meeting and you can see a 20-page summary of current and future work. I think this link will get you there too.

    FileOpen.aspx (

    Folks wanting to help with this work are urged to apply or just join the meetings and make a public comment.

  3. Okay Darrol, I went to the webpage and now have a better idea of why we have an EDC and what it does and has done. I see the mayor gets two appointments to the Commission and the Council Members each get one which I think is a good thing for the public to know generally speaking.

    It seems like there has to be some element of being “in” with an elected official to get appointed to this Commission and I’m not convinced that this is necessarily a healthy way to do things for our community in terms of possibly promoting vested interests. Would a fairer and more random way of selection of Commissioners be a simple drawing of names of applicants until the positions are filled? It seems to me like the main criteria for being on this commission should just be wanting to be on the commission in the interest of the public good, but how do we assure that this is what we get? You shouldn’t have to be acceptable to an elected public official to serve in a capacity such as this, IMHO.

    1. I certainly didn’t have an in and served on the commission with a few others who did not have an in. I volunteered to be more involved in City matters, with my key interest being practical development that created mixed use space along Highway 99 and in the surrounding areas. Car dealerships (albeit huge cash cows) don’t support higher density housing along a key transit corridor that would allow Edmonds to import less labor. (I.e. live and work in Edmonds).

      The biggest reason I served was the lack of a City presence along the Highway 99 corridor. I am pretty sure Darrol and other fellow commissioners grew weary when I started mentioning leveraging the Highway 99 redevelopment as an opportunity to begin moving City Offices to this important corridor.

      With that being said, I found it a humbling and educational experience into City Government and citizenship. It’s a cool thing to be involved with and a great way to serve the community. I am not sure what I added to the common good but I did learn quite a bit.

  4. George, I’m not accusing anyone of having an “in” or not. I’m just saying there might be a better way to make appointments to such a potentially influential commission than appointment by an elected official. If I understand correctly the mayor gets to approve of two appointments. Do you suppose it might be in the realm of possibility that a mayor who has two friends he wants on the commission to promote his interest in seeing a certain something happens and he/she tells them to be sure to apply and they will get the appointment. You can’t convince me that that hasn’t happened. For the record I totally agree with you on the points you make about the Hwy 99 Corridor. You are definitely pushing a big rock up a big hill on that one, but thanks for trying.

  5. Actually George the work you and Matt and others did to sort out the options were really eye opening and useful. These ideas have stayed in place and form the foundation for some continued thinking. Moving city offices both City Hall and Public Safety folks out of DT has many benefits. Both facilities and their parking stalls and the absence of city employees from DT will provide other economic development opportunities. CH could be a high tech firm or Hotel. PS could be the year around market suggested as part of the SAP.

    I it is my bet that when Council meets tonight with South County Fire Board we will hear comments suggesting significant upgrades or even building a new fire station in another part of town. That would free up that space as well.

    So George, the EDC has not grown weary of your work but rather are now embracing many of its elements. Look at the link provided above any you will see your work lives on!

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