WNC Adds 11 New Voting Board Members

The 24-member Washington News Council has added 11 new voting board members to replace members who stepped down at the end of their second 3-year terms, or for other reasons. The new Council members were welcomed and officially voted on board at the WNC’s Annual Meeting on Feb. 5. Click HERE for media images. Click HERE for all WNC board members’ biographies. The new members are:


George Cole – Development Officer, Central Washington University, Ellensburg (formerly with Montana Public Television, Spokane Public Radio, KREM-TV)

John Knowlton – Journalism Professor, Green River Community College (President-elect, Pacific Northwest Association of Journalism Educators)

Erik Lacitis – Staff Writer, The Seattle Times

Clayton Park – Business Editor, King County Journal (former editor and reporter, Puget Sound Business Journal, Seattle Sun, The Seattle Times)

David Schaefer – Assistant Director of Public Affairs, Port of Seattle (former Seattle Times reporter and editor, former press secretary for U.S. Rep. Jim McDermott)


Everett Billingslea – Vice President, Administration & Legal Affairs, Lynden Inc. (former General Counsel to Gov. Gary Locke; former Bogle & Gates attorney)

Steve Boyer – Senior Vice President, Rockey Hill & Knowlton (former director of communications, Services Group of America; former Sr. VP, The Fearey Group)
Stan Emert – Director of Community Relations, Symetra Financial (also boys basketball coach, Lakeside School; host/producer, KWPX public affairs TV show)

Paula Selis – Senior Counsel, Consumer Protection Division, High Tech Unit, Washington State Attorney General’s Office

Fawn Spady – Co-owner, Dick’s Drive-In Restaurants (co-founder, Education Excellence Coalition; founder, Creative Empowerment Inc., a consulting firm)

Cindy Zehnder – President, TVW (former chief clerk, WA State House of Representatives; former deputy commissioner, WA State Employment Security Department)

The WNC also elected a slate of officers for 2005:

President – Cyrus Krohn, Executive Producer, MSN Video

Vice President – Steve Silha, Writer and Communications Consultant

Secretary – Sandy Schoolfield, Community Volunteer

Treasurer – Suzie Burke, President, Fremont Dock Company

“We are very pleased to be adding so many excellent new members to the News Council,” said WNC President Cyrus Krohn. “And we were delighted to have so many terrific people apply.” The new members were selected from nearly two dozen applicants in an open, statewide competitive process.

The WNC’s board members oversee the organization’s operations and finances. They also consider complaints against the news media and vote on the validity of these complaints in formal WNC hearings. These are voluntary, unpaid positions with 3-year terms.

Ken Bunting, Executive Editor of the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, was a guest speaker at the WNC’s annual meeting. He discussed the P-I’s efforts to maintain public trust and credibility with readers, the changing news media market, and the vital need for fair, accurate, balanced and comprehensive news coverage. To read Ken Bunting’s remarks, click HERE.