Andrea John-Smith, Founder and CEO

Andrea helps organizations succeed with a purpose and a plan. Her mission is to evoke the moral imagination of nonprofit leaders (and occasionally the person sitting next to her on light rail) to create the world we want and deserve. A strategic planning geek, she has guided scores of organizations through customized planning processes, resource development interventions, mergers, and leadership transitions. Click here to peruse a selection of case studies from her many adventures.

A child of the 1970s, Andrea grew up in the era before the catalytic converter, seat belts, car seats, airbags, and fresh vegetables. Witnessing people decide to go after what they wanted taught her that such things are possible.

She believes It is possible to change hearts, minds, and even life and generational trajectories — because we decide to.

In the 1990, she played a significant role in the revitalization of Seattle’s Columbia City neighborhood where, again, people came together around a shared vision, chipping away over a decade to make it real.

In the nonprofit sector, she has seen wondrous kindness and solid results. She has also seen inspirational visions stymied, and enormous effort founder for lack of a clear, shared purpose. Watching brilliant and dedicated people working hard, and donors and board members doing and giving-a-plenty, with little to show for it except burnout and even cynicism — this really chaps her.

She spends her days working alongside extraordinary and dedicated people, all conjuring a nonprofit sector that is purposeful, values-driven, well-led, and inclusive. For a detailed resume, click here.

In the spring you can find her — ever-hopeful — cheering on the Seattle Mariners with her husband of 30 years, hoping her college-aged daughter will call. In the winter, she loves to bake, read, listen incessantly to jazz and podcasts, and binge on crossword puzzles.