OLYMPIA – Gov. Jay Inslee has appointed Michael Shiosaki, a long-time director and planner of city parks, to the Washington State Recreation and Conservation Funding Board.
The board awards about $92 million in grants statewide every biennium for the development of parks, trails and boating and other outdoor recreation facilities, and for the conservation of wildlife habitat and working farms.
Shiosaki has worked for the Seattle Parks Department for 14 years, first as a planning and development manager and then as deputy director and now director of the park department’s Planning and Development Division. There, he leads the planning, design and development of the state's largest urban park system. Shiosaki also was the deputy director of the Sammamish Parks and Recreation Department and a parks development planner and manager of the Planning & Capital Projects Division for Bellevue’s Parks & Community Services Department. Shiosaki is a licensed landscape architect.
“Michael brings great skills and extensive knowledge to the funding board,” Inslee said. “His experience in park planning, budget and community involvement will help the board make strategic decisions about where to invest the state’s limited resources so that we keep our state a great outdoor destination for all Washingtonians.”
Shiosaki grew up in Spokane and moved to Seattle to attend the University of Washington and has lived in Seattle since then. In addition to his work, he is a member of the Washington Park Arboretum Botanic Garden Committee, the Washington Recreation and Park Association and the American Society of Landscape Architects. He also has served as a board member of the Capitol Hill Housing Foundation, Arboretum Foundation, Seattle Board of Park Commissioners and the Pride Foundation.
Shiosaki is an avid skier, hiker and mountain climber. His term began May 2 and runs through Dec. 31, 2017.
“We’re very pleased to welcome Mr. Shiosaki to the funding board,” said Kaleen Cottingham, director of the Recreation and Conservation Office, which supports the funding board in its work. “He is an active outdoor recreationist and understands the importance of parks and planning for them to meet community needs. Those skills will serve him well on a board that makes decisions about where to put the next park or trail.”
The Governor also appointed Ted Willhite as chair of the board. Willhite has served on the board since January 2012 and replaces Harriet Spanel who passed away earlier this year.
Since 1964, the Recreation and Conservation Funding Board has awarded more than $1.3 billion in grants for more than 5,700 projects in every county of the state. The grants have leveraged more than $884 million in local contributions, bringing the total investment to more than $2.2 billion in Washington’s great outdoors.