Marilyn Strickland, Mayor, City of Tacoma

Marilyn Strickland, Mayor, City of Tacoma


Marilyn Strickland was sworn in as Mayor of Tacoma in January 2010, and previously served as a city council member. Born in Seoul, Strickland is a graduate of the University of Washington and holds a Master’s Degree in Business Administration from Clark-Atlanta University. She and her husband Patrick Erwin live in the downtown.

Mayor Strickland has professional experience in both the private and public sectors. She served as Development Officer for the Tacoma Public Library and has held management positions with the American Cancer Society, Starbucks Coffee Company and JayRay Communications where she worked with Tacoma Public Utilities to help launch Click!Network, America’s first municipally owned telecommunications network.

During her first term as mayor, Mayor Strickland has worked with business, neighborhoods and the education community to lead efforts including:

  • Raising the city’s business and occupation tax threshold from $75,000 to $250,000 – providing tax relief for 5000 small businesses.
  • Creating the City of Destiny Scholarship with the College Success Foundation.
  • Launching a Community Gardens Initiative with a donation of city-owned property in seven neighborhoods, to achieve the goal of having the highest number ofcommunity gardens per capita in the United States.
  • Promoting Free Trade Agreements to increase exports.
  • Making a $28 million public investment in infrastructure to attract private investment on Tacoma’s waterfront.
  • Completion of a $30 million renovation of Cheney Stadium and securing a 30-year lease with the Tacoma Rainiers to keep minor league baseball in Tacoma.

Creating the Mayor’s Education Task Force to promote innovation, civic engagement and improved outcomes for student achievement.

Local, Regional and National Board Involvement:

  • Chair, Tacoma Employees Retirement System Board of Directors
  • Chair, Pierce Transit Board of Commissioners
  • Advisory Board, University of Washington Tacoma
  • Chair, Law Enforcement Support Agency
  • Executive Committee, Tacoma Pierce County Economic Development Board
  • Capital Committee, Sound Transit Board of Commissioners
  • Executive Committee, Puget Sound Regional Council
  • U.S. Conference of Mayors Public Education Task Force
  • U.S. Conference of Mayors Workforce Development Council
  • U.S. Small Business Administration Advisory Council for Underserved Communities