Workforce Southwest Washington (WSW) CEO Kevin Perkey has been elected Chair of the Washington Workforce Association (WWA) for a two-year term beginning January 2020.

As Chair, Perkey will work closely with the other 11 Washington Workforce Development Board CEOs to coordinate the state’s workforce system which includes multiple state agencies, community colleges, community-based organizations, businesses and labor unions.

Perkey has been CEO of WSW since July 2018. Prior to joining WSW, Perkey was CEO of South Central Pennsylvania Works, a regional workforce development board investing more than $12 million of public workforce investment resources annually across an eight-county region of South Central, Pennsylvania. Perkey serves on the boards of the Columbia River Economic Development Council, Cowlitz Economic Development Council, and Mount St. Helens Institute and on the STEM Network Governance Committee and the U.S. Conference of Mayors Workforce Development Council (serving Policy Committee co-chair).

“The world of work is changing every day. Advances in technology, emerging markets for new businesses of all types and sizes, changing worker preferences and values around work/life balance, and multi-generational workplaces all influence the future direction of workforce development,” Perkey said.

“I’m grateful to follow in the footsteps of many of my WWA colleagues, helping shape the future of innovative and high-impact workforce development investments across the state of Washington. I look forward to continuing our work as we support the growth and competitiveness of our state,” Perkey continued.

A change in several other leadership roles is coming to the WWA in the new year.

Outgoing WWA Chair Linda Nguyen announced in March that she will retire from WorkForce Central, and her two-year run as Chair of WWA comes to a close at the end of 2019. Nguyen has been with WorkForce Central since 1991 and has served as its CEO since 2007. She is a board member of the Tacoma-Pierce County Economic Development Board, United Way of Pierce County, the Washington Economic Development Association, and the U.S. Conference of Mayors Workforce Development Council.

“It has been an honor and a pleasure to serve as Chairwoman for WWA. Working alongside all of my peers and partners to further system integration has resulted in improved customer access to services and sustained economic health throughout Washington State,” Nguyen said.

WWA recently named a new Executive Director, who took the helm Oct. 28. Sandra Miller comes with a professional career spanning more than 30 years in the hospitality, retail and workforce development industries. She has served as Vice President for Intercontinental Investments, a hospitality holding company where she led all aspects of the company’s operations. Her experience also includes Business and Community Engagement for Pacific Mountain Workforce Development Council and co-ownership of g. miller-Olympia, a premier retailer of finer menswear in the city’s downtown core.

Miller has served on the Governor’s Poverty Reduction Work Group, Washington Lodging Association, Thurston Economic Development Council, Experience Olympia and Beyond, and Community Youth Services. She is a past recipient of a Woman of Achievement for Social Justice Award from the YWCA of Olympia and has been recognized as a Woman of Influence by Business Examiner.

“The Washington Workforce Association has been a stellar and effective steward of the workforce system in our state and it is an honor to represent the Board of Directors as we continue this valuable work,” Miller said. “They are passionate, heart-driven leaders who work tirelessly so that all Washingtonians have the opportunity to thrive. I am thrilled to be working with such a fine group of workforce development professionals.”

In addition, Tiffany Scott will take over as WWA’s Vice-Chair for Jack Fitzgerald, CEO of South Central Workforce Council.

Scott, CEO of Benton-Franklin Workforce Development Council, has 20 years of workforce development experience that she will bring to her new role. Scott, a self-described change agent, believes innovation is done best within partnerships. Along with incoming Chair Perkey, Scott said she plans to build upon past accomplishments to work together to guide the vision of WWA, creating an even stronger Washington.

Erin Monroe, CEO of Workforce Snohomish, will continue to serve as WWA Treasurer in 2020. Monroe is a Certified Public Accountant with more than 25 years of business, accounting and auditing experience in the private and public sectors and 10 years of workforce development experience. She joined Workforce Snohomish as Chief Financial Officer in 2009 and was promoted to CEO in 2014, where she continues to direct her passion towards working with strategic partnerships to help people get jobs and employers fill jobs.

The Washington Workforce Association (WWA) is a nonprofit non-partisan membership organization of the 12 Workforce Development Councils (WDC) of Washington State. The WDCs are business-led boards that coordinate and leverage workforce investments and strategies with stakeholders from education, economic development, labor and community-based organizations to advance the economic health of their respective communities through a skilled and competitive workforce. Learn more at http://washingtonworkforce.org.

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