Last week we celebrated 30 years of our King County Luncheon. In this week’s blog, we recap our Seattle event, share photos, and discuss the takeaways from our keynote speaker Alfre Woodard.

Ever been in a room where you feel revived, energized, and powerful? That was the atmosphere in the Washington State Convention Center where we celebrated 30 years of women in King County.  The work we do could not be done without all the support we receive. That is why we were able to raise $789,038 to date! We couldn’t do it without all the incredible support from the community.

Ellen, Maria, Elisa, Alfre
From left to right - Ellen Rush (Program graduate and former client speaker), Elisa Jaffe Luncheon Emcee, Maria Chavez Wilcox (CEO, YWCA Seattle | King | Snohomish)  Alfre Woodard (Keynote speaker)

Tuesday’s event hosted 2,027 guests at the Washington State Convention Center. In continuing with this year’s theme, “Women and Girls Across Decades,” we not only spoke about how the world and the City of Seattle had changed in the last 30 years but how our services have changed over time. YWCA CEO Maria Chavez Wilcox shed some light on a few things,

"Can you believe that 30 years ago, the only Amazon anyone knew of was a jungle in South America? The internet was only five years old and almost no one had an email  account. 30 years ago, the median cost of a home in King County was $97,000. Last month, the median cost of a home in King County hit an all-time high again of $725,000!"

Our client speaker Ellen Rush, reminded us of how she felt when she first found YWCA,

"When we got to YWCA, we encountered a very holistic and comprehensive program. There wasn't one aspect of what I would need to establish stability and    what I needed to heal that YWCA didn't provide."

Ellen Rush
Ellen Rush (Program graduate)


We were honored to have Alfre Woodard join us as she is not only a past keynote speaker but whose roots at YWCA run deep. Her presence, her aura, her storytelling, we were enamored! Speaking as Sojouner Truth, Alfre took us on a journey, through the eyes and voice of Sojouner’s “Aint I a Woman?” leaving us captivated and motivated.

“One thing I learned growing up as a woman of color was that when anybody’s right’s are compromised. That means that your rights are at risk as well.”Alfre

Alfre Woodard
 Alfre Woodard (2018 King County Luncheon keynote speaker)


Alfre reminded us of the power of women gathered by saying,

"Women have always had each other’s back. Just this time, we’re waving our flag high. We’re letting out girls knows we’re here for them and that they need to be here for other girls. Because when a woman moves forward, the whole family moves forward. When a family moves forward, the whole nation moves forward.”

Let’s be more like Alfre in recognizing that activism is not a decision we make, but an impulse rooted in each of us.

“My activism is not a decision I made It is an impulse rooted in my upbringing. And that being in service is not a responsibility, it is a privilege."




YWCA Inspire Luncheon
Women Across Decades
King County
King County 30th Anniversary
Salma Siddick

Salma Siddick is the Social Media & Content Manager at YWCA Seattle | King | Snohomish. An immigrant from Zimbabwe, Salma has lived, worked, and attended school on three continents.


We share the stories of our clients, programs, and staff, as well as news about the agency and what’s happening in our King and Snohomish community.

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Wed, 05/23/2018 - 15:00
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