Port of Seattle Commission President Courtney Gregoire and Executive Director Stephen P. Metruck have announced that Pearse Edwards has been selected to serve as Senior Director of External Relations. Edwards’ portfolio will include government relations, community engagement, communications, regional transportation, capital project delivery, and the Port’s office of social responsibility. In addition, he will serve as a member of the executive leadership team supporting both the executive office and commission.
“Pearse’s background is perfectly calibrated for the Port’s external relations team, which helps create economic opportunities for our region while ensuring that local businesses and residents benefit from the Port’s investments,” said Executive Director Metruck. “His experience in Washington state, Washington, D.C., on policy issues, operating executive offices, and leading public service teams will be a great asset as the Port navigates a dynamic policy environment and advances significant economic and environmental strategies.”
Edwards has held executive level communications and policy and political advisory roles with three Governors – Gary Locke and Chris Gregoire in Washington State, and Bev Perdue in North Carolina, and two gubernatorial candidates. Prior to that, he worked for the International Finance Corporation in the Russian Federation helping implement privatization of state-owned enterprises.
Edwards also served as a Director of Communications at Microsoft at its Redmond headquarters, managing external and internal communications, media relations and executing the company’s corporate social responsibility policy initiatives. Edwards also worked as an account manager at two of the national public affairs and strategic communications firms – APCO Worldwide in Seattle and GMMB in Washington, D.C. – and as Director of Public Affairs at Capstrat in Raleigh, NC.
Prior to his new role, Edwards served as the Port’s Director of Government Relations, managing the execution of the Port’s legislative and policy priorities at the local, regional, state and federal levels of government and had been serving as the acting Senior Director of External Affairs. A North Carolina native, Edwards is a graduate of Appalachian State University and Leadership North Carolina.