Who We Are

meet the seattle times

The Seattle Times serves the Northwest with thoughtful, independent journalism that makes a difference. We’re a news media company dedicated to the highest standards… MORE
of journalism. We cut through the clutter and provide readers with news and information that is timely, relevant and easy to access in every way they consume us. Founded in 1896, The Seattle Times remains a family-owned business deeply rooted in the community and committed to principled, investigative news coverage.

NEWS THAT MATTERS

As an independent news media company, The Seattle Times digs deep to bring you the full story. Our reporting has a direct impact on our local community. The Seattle Times has coverage you won’t find anywhere else.

PULITZER PRIZES

The Seattle Times is the winner of nine Pulitzer Prizes, journalism’s highest honor, and has been a finalist on 14 other occasions since 1982.

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Sara Taylor, whose daughter overdosed from methadonePierce County firefighters salute while an American flag waves over the streetA Boeing 737 on a runwayA 5,300-square-foot house on the Tulalip Indian ReservationThe deck of the fully loaded Arco Anchorage during a moderate stormTex Boullioun, president of the Boeing with Eastern Airlines President Frank Borman in 1978Steve Titus embraces his fiance, Mona Imholt, outside the courtroom after he was granted a new trial in a rape caseThe Pulitzer photograph of four exhausted firemen titled Edwin O. Guthman of The Seattle Times was awarded a Pulitzer for his series on the clearing of Communist charges against Professor Melvin Rader

PRODUCTS

The Seattle Times reaches more Northwest adults than any other local media, delivering quality content where, when and how our readers want it. Explore our diverse range of products across print and digital platforms.

PRODUCTS

The Seattle Times reaches more Northwest adults than any other local media, delivering quality content where, when and how our readers want it. Explore our diverse range of products across print and digital platforms:

LEADERSHIP

Meet the leadership team whose innovation, business acumen and technical savvy are propelling The Seattle Times into the future as a news media company. These experienced executives remain dedicated stewards of The Seattle Times’ 118-year history of principled journalism and public service.

  • Frank  A. Blethen Publisher and Chief Executive Officer
  • Ryan Blethen Assistant Managing Editor/Digital and Associate Publisher
  • Alayne Fardella
  • Alan Fisco
  • Kathy Best
  • Carey Butler
  • Brian Kokes
  • Jill Mackie
  • David Pelter
  • Kate Riley

Frank A. Blethen

Publisher and Chief Executive Officer

Frank Blethen is a fourth-generation member of the Blethen family, which founded The Seattle Times in 1896. He has been Publisher and Chief Executive Officer since 1985, having joined the family business full time in 1968. He held a variety of training positions at The Seattle Times until 1974 when he joined The Seattle Times-owned Walla Walla Union-Bulletin as Publisher. He returned to The Seattle Times in 1980 and held executive positions in circulation, advertising, marketing and labor.

A graduate of Arizona State University, Blethen has done post-graduate work at Harvard. He is known for his civic involvement as well as his generosity in donating to many causes in the community, most notably in the areas of higher education, cultural diversity and health and human services.

Blethen is deeply committed to diversity, equal opportunity and inclusion. His other passions include his family, preserving family-owned businesses and independent journalism.

Ryan Blethen

Assistant Managing Editor/Digital and Associate Publisher

As Assistant Managing Editor/Digital, Ryan Blethen oversees the digital news operation at The Seattle Times. Blethen also holds the position of Associate Publisher of The Seattle Times, serving as a member of the company’s executive leadership team.

Prior to his move into the newsroom, Blethen oversaw all product development and management for digital and print in his role as Director of New Product Strategies. Blethen has also served as The Seattle Times Editorial Page Editor.

A fifth-generation member of the Blethen family, Blethen has worked as a reporter or editor at newspapers in Yakima and Spokane, and Portland, Maine. His great-great-grandfather, Alden Blethen, founded The Times in 1896. Ryan Blethen is a graduate of Washington State University and attended journalism school at the University of Kansas.

Alayne Fardella

President and Chief Operating Officer

Alayne Fardella is President and Chief Operating Officer at The Seattle Times. Fardella oversees company operations and partners with Publisher Frank Blethen and the executive team in the work of long-term strategic planning for the company.

Fardella has served in a number of leadership roles at The Seattle Times, most recently as Senior Vice President, Business Operations, with oversight of budgeting, human resources, labor, operations and Seattle Times affiliate newspapers in Walla Walla, Yakima, Issaquah, Sammamish, Newcastle, Snoqualmie and North Bend. Additional key responsibilities have included oversight of leadership development and digital strategy.

Prior to joining The Seattle Times, Fardella held management positions with top high-tech manufacturing companies, including Intel Corporation and National Semiconductor. A native of the San Francisco Bay Area, Fardella holds an M.B.A. from the University of Phoenix and a B.A. from Santa Clara University.

Fardella’s community and volunteer involvement includes serving as a member of the American Lung Association’s Lung Force Women’s Cabinet, and as a volunteer advisor to Sister Schools, a Seattle-based nonprofit that supports schools and orphanages in Uganda with educational supplies, clothing and other important educational resources.

Alan Fisco

Executive Vice President, Audience Revenue

Fisco joined the company in 1992 as the Single Copy Sales Manager. In 1995, he was promoted to Home Delivery Manager, followed by Director of Consumer Marketing in 1997. He was promoted to Vice President of Circulation in 2005, and in 2006 added marketing to his responsibilities. Fisco started in the newspaper industry in 1983 as Single Copy Sales Manager at The Everett Herald. After three years in Everett, including a promotion to Circulation Sales Manager, he moved to Oregon, becoming Circulation Manager at the Corvallis Gazette-Times. After one year, he moved to The Register-Guard in Eugene, Ore., where he served as the Circulation Director for four years.

Fisco currently serves as a member of the International Newspaper Marketing Association. He is a past board member of the Eugene Jaycees and is involved in numerous charitable and civic activities within the community, including as a board member of Big Brothers Big Sisters of Puget Sound. Fisco has a B.A. in economics from the University of Washington.

Kathy Best

Editor

Kathy Best is responsible for The Seattle Times News Department, Washington state’s largest news media organization, and its website, seattletimes.com. In her previous role at The Seattle Times, Best served as Managing Editor for Digital News and Innovation where she led the way for bridging the divide between print and digital aspects of The Seattle Times reporting. During her tenure as a Managing Editor, The Times won two Pulitzer Prizes — for breaking news in 2010 and investigative reporting in 2012.

As a member of the company’s senior executive team, Best contributes to overall company operations, strategy and long-term planning. Before joining The Seattle Times in 2005, Best was Assistant Managing Editor for Sunday and national news at The Baltimore Sun. She earned her B.S. in journalism from Southern Illinois University at Carbondale and completed her master’s degree in public affairs reporting at what is now the University of Illinois at Springfield.

Her career in newspapers spans reporting, where she has covered state and national politics and government, and editing, where she has directed coverage of earthquakes, hurricanes and acts of human deceit and destruction. In addition to her work at The Seattle Times and The Sun, Best also has led the metro operation at the Seattle Post-Intelligencer and served as the Assistant Managing Editor at the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. She began her journalism career covering night cops at the Quad-City Times in Davenport, Iowa.

Carey Butler

Chief Technology Officer and Vice President, Technology

As Chief Technology Officer and Vice President, Technology, Carey Butler provides strategic leadership on all technology matters and oversees The Seattle Times IT department. She is a member of The Times executive leadership team.

Prior to joining The Seattle Times in January 2014, Butler served in a number of technology leadership roles, most recently as Senior Vice President of Technology at Coinstar, Inc. (now Outerwall), where she was responsible for all technology aspects of the Coinstar kiosk offering, including development of new consumer products. Prior to her role at Coinstar, Butler was Vice President, Professional Engineering Services, at BSQUARE, where she delivered engineering services and digital products for global consumer electronics companies.

Butler’s leadership roles extend beyond The Seattle Times into the broader technology and nonprofit community, where she advocates for STEM education and workforce development. Butler has held board positions at both the Technology Access Foundation and the Washington Technology Industry Association, and is a current member of the CIO Council at 501 Commons, a 501(c)3 organization that provides customized professional consulting and expertise to nonprofit organizations. Butler earned her degree in Business/Quantitative Methods from the University of Washington.

Brian Kokes

Vice President, Advertising

As Vice President, Advertising, Brian Kokes leads The Seattle Times Advertising Department and has responsibility for all advertising revenue, both print and digital. He is a member of The Seattle Times executive leadership team.

Prior to joining The Seattle Times in May 2014, Kokes served in a number of sales and advertising leadership roles, most recently as Vice President, Advertising, at the Bay Area News Group (BANG), where he was responsible for expanding the digital sales organization by growing digital revenues and products. Before joining the BANG leadership team, Kokes served as Vice President, Sales, at Gold Mobile, a mobile platform provider, where he oversaw the team of sales and business development professionals. While in that role, Kokes served large enterprise clients that deployed value‑added‑applications, including marketing and promotions.

Kokes’ more than 23 years of sales and marketing experience in the digital and media industries includes leadership roles at the Los Angeles Times, the San Francisco Chronicle, the Fresno Bee, and the Sacramento Bee. A native of Portland, Ore., he holds a B.S. in History and Journalism from the University of Oregon.

Jill Mackie

Vice President, Public Affairs

In her role as Vice President, Public Affairs, Jill Mackie oversees strategic communications for The Seattle Times as well as representing the company’s interests at the local, state and federal levels on issues affecting The Seattle Times, including land use, general business climate, tax and regulatory matters and issues affecting public access to public information. She is involved in national efforts to reduce consolidation of media ownership and to repeal the estate tax, both issues that impact independent ownership of media.

Mackie serves on the boards for the Seattle Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce and the Pacific Northwest Newspaper Association, and has been active in a number of other industry and community efforts including service on the boards of Allied Daily Newspapers of Washington, Wellspring Family Services and the South Lake Union Community Council.

Prior to joining The Seattle Times, Mackie served as Vice President for Government Affairs and Human Resources for the Pacific Lumber and Shipping Company in Seattle, where she focused on international trade and the environment. She has more than 20 years experience working in governmental and public affairs and holds a B.A. in Sociology from Seattle Pacific University.

David Pelter

Vice President, Product Management and Development

As Vice President, Product Management and Development, David Pelter leads The Seattle Times’ product development and business intelligence teams in creating digital and print products. He is a member of The Seattle Times executive leadership team.

Pelter has served in a number leadership roles that have contributed to his extensive background in creating products that generate incremental revenue and ensure a high standard of excellence in user experience. Prior to joining The Seattle Times in August, 2014, Pelter served as the Head of Global Product Management for Amazon Student. Before joining Amazon, he oversaw product management at Outerwall in his role as Senior Director, Product Management for its 20,000 kiosk Coinstar line of business.

Pelter’s over 20 years of business and product management experience also includes starting and running his own company, Insidetrip.com, and pricing leadership roles at T-Mobile and Alaska Airlines. He earned his Bachelor’s degree from The University of Michigan Ross School of Business and his MBA from the Olin School of Business, Washington University.

Kate Riley

Editorial Page Editor

As Editorial Page Editor, Kate Riley has oversight of the opinion voice of The Seattle Times and the editorial staff.

An award-winning journalist, Riley joined The Seattle Times in May 2002 as an Editorial Writer and Columnist, focusing on energy issues and urban-rural tensions. Riley started her daily newspaper career at The Times-owned Walla Walla Union-Bulletin in 1985 where she covered agriculture and business. In 1988, she moved to the Tri-City Herald, where she covered business and education, served as Assistant to the Publisher, Editorial Writer and, finally, as Editorial Page Editor.

A Redmond High School graduate, Riley graduated from the University of Washington with majors in economics and communications. Riley is a former board member for the Association of Opinion Journalists (formerly the National Conference of Editorial Writers), and previously served as Editor of the Masthead, its quarterly journal. Additionally, she chaired the organization’s ethics, innovations and nominating committees.

Frank Blethen is a fourth-generation member of the Blethen family, which founded The Seattle Times in 1896. He has been Publisher and Chief Executive Officer since 1985, having joined the family business full time in 1968. He held a variety of training positions at The Seattle Times until 1974 when he joined The Seattle Times-owned Walla Walla Union-Bulletin as Publisher. He returned to The Seattle Times in 1980 and held executive positions in circulation, advertising, marketing and labor.

A graduate of Arizona State University, Blethen has done post-graduate work at Harvard. He is known for his civic involvement as well as his generosity in donating to many causes in the community, most notably in the areas of higher education, cultural diversity and health and human services.

Blethen is deeply committed to diversity, equal opportunity and inclusion. His other passions include his family, preserving family-owned businesses and independent journalism.

As Assistant Managing Editor/Digital, Ryan Blethen oversees the digital news operation at The Seattle Times. Blethen also holds the position of Associate Publisher of The Seattle Times, serving as a member of the company’s executive leadership team.

Prior to his move into the newsroom, Blethen oversaw all product development and management for digital and print in his role as Director of New Product Strategies. Blethen has also served as The Seattle Times Editorial Page Editor.

A fifth-generation member of the Blethen family, Blethen has worked as a reporter or editor at newspapers in Yakima and Spokane, and Portland, Maine. His great-great-grandfather, Alden Blethen, founded The Times in 1896. Ryan Blethen is a graduate of Washington State University and attended journalism school at the University of Kansas.

Alayne Fardella is President and Chief Operating Officer at The Seattle Times. Fardella oversees company operations and partners with Publisher Frank Blethen and the executive team in the work of long-term strategic planning for the company.

Fardella has served in a number of leadership roles at The Seattle Times, most recently as Senior Vice President, Business Operations, with oversight of budgeting, human resources, labor, operations and Seattle Times affiliate newspapers in Walla Walla, Yakima, Issaquah, Sammamish, Newcastle, Snoqualmie and North Bend. Additional key responsibilities have included oversight of leadership development and digital strategy.

Prior to joining The Seattle Times, Fardella held management positions with top high-tech manufacturing companies, including Intel Corporation and National Semiconductor. A native of the San Francisco Bay Area, Fardella holds an M.B.A. from the University of Phoenix and a B.A. from Santa Clara University.

Fardella’s community and volunteer involvement includes serving as a member of the American Lung Association’s Lung Force Women’s Cabinet, and as a volunteer advisor to Sister Schools, a Seattle-based nonprofit that supports schools and orphanages in Uganda with educational supplies, clothing and other important educational resources.

Fisco joined the company in 1992 as the Single Copy Sales Manager. In 1995, he was promoted to Home Delivery Manager, followed by Director of Consumer Marketing in 1997. He was promoted to Vice President of Circulation in 2005, and in 2006 added marketing to his responsibilities. Fisco started in the newspaper industry in 1983 as Single Copy Sales Manager at The Everett Herald. After three years in Everett, including a promotion to Circulation Sales Manager, he moved to Oregon, becoming Circulation Manager at the Corvallis Gazette-Times. After one year, he moved to The Register-Guard in Eugene, Ore., where he served as the Circulation Director for four years.

Fisco currently serves as a member of the International Newspaper Marketing Association. He is a past board member of the Eugene Jaycees and is involved in numerous charitable and civic activities within the community, including as a board member of Big Brothers Big Sisters of Puget Sound. Fisco has a B.A. in economics from the University of Washington.

Kathy Best is responsible for The Seattle Times News Department, Washington state’s largest news media organization, and its website, seattletimes.com. In her previous role at The Seattle Times, Best served as Managing Editor for Digital News and Innovation where she led the way for bridging the divide between print and digital aspects of The Seattle Times reporting. During her tenure as a Managing Editor, The Times won two Pulitzer Prizes — for breaking news in 2010 and investigative reporting in 2012.

As a member of the company’s senior executive team, Best contributes to overall company operations, strategy and long-term planning. Before joining The Seattle Times in 2005, Best was Assistant Managing Editor for Sunday and national news at The Baltimore Sun. She earned her B.S. in journalism from Southern Illinois University at Carbondale and completed her master’s degree in public affairs reporting at what is now the University of Illinois at Springfield.

Her career in newspapers spans reporting, where she has covered state and national politics and government, and editing, where she has directed coverage of earthquakes, hurricanes and acts of human deceit and destruction. In addition to her work at The Times and The Sun, Best also has led the metro operation at the Seattle Post-Intelligencer and served as the Assistant Managing Editor at the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. She began her journalism career covering night cops at the Quad-City Times in Davenport, Iowa.

As Chief Technology Officer and Vice President, Technology Carey Butler provides strategic leadership on all technology matters and oversees The Seattle Times IT department. She is a member of The Times executive leadership team.

Prior to joining The Seattle Times in January, 2014, Butler served in a number of technology leadership roles, most recently as Senior Vice President of Technology at Coinstar, Inc. (now Outerwall), where she was responsible for all technology aspects of the Coinstar kiosk offering, including development of new consumer products. Prior to her role at Coinstar, Butler was Vice President, Professional Engineering Services, at BSQUARE, where she delivered engineering services and digital products for global consumer electronics companies.

Butler’s leadership roles extend beyond The Seattle Times into the broader technology and nonprofit community, where she advocates for STEM education and workforce development. Butler has held board positions at both the Technology Access Foundation and the Washington Technology Industry Association, and is a current member of the CIO Council at 501 Commons, a 501(c)3 organization that provides customized professional consulting and expertise to nonprofit organizations. Butler earned her degree in Business/Quantitative Methods from the University of Washington.

As Vice President, Advertising Brian Kokes leads The Seattle Times Advertising Department and has responsibility for all advertising revenue, both print and digital. He is a member of The Seattle Times executive leadership team.

Prior to joining The Seattle Times in May 2014, Kokes served in a number of sales and advertising leadership roles, most recently as Vice President, Advertising, at the Bay Area News Group (BANG), where he was responsible for expanding the digital sales organization by growing digital revenues and products. Before joining the BANG leadership team, Kokes served as Vice President, Sales, at Gold Mobile, a mobile platform provider, where he oversaw the team of sales and business development professionals. While in that role, Kokes served large enterprise clients that deployed value‑added‑applications, including marketing and promotions.

Kokes’ over 23 years of sales and marketing experience in the digital and media industries includes leadership roles at the Los Angeles Times, the San Francisco Chronicle, the Fresno Bee, and the Sacramento Bee. A native of Portland, Ore., he holds a B.S. in History and Journalism from the University of Oregon.

In her role as Vice President, Public Affairs, Jill Mackie oversees strategic communications for The Seattle Times as well as representing the company’s interests at the local, state and federal levels on issues affecting The Seattle Times, including land use, general business climate, tax and regulatory matters and issues affecting public access to public information. She is involved in national efforts to reduce consolidation of media ownership and to repeal the estate tax, both issues that impact independent ownership of media.

Mackie serves on the boards for the Seattle Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce and the Pacific Northwest Newspaper Association, and has been active in a number of other industry and community efforts including service on the boards of Allied Daily Newspapers of Washington, Wellspring Family Services and the South Lake Union Community Council.

Prior to joining The Seattle Times, Mackie served as Vice President for Government Affairs and Human Resources for the Pacific Lumber and Shipping Company in Seattle, where she focused on international trade and the environment. She has more than 20 years experience working in governmental and public affairs and holds a B.A. in Sociology from Seattle Pacific University.

As Vice President, Product Management and Development, David Pelter leads The Seattle Times’ product development and business intelligence teams in creating digital and print products. He is a member of The Seattle Times executive leadership team.

Pelter has served in a number leadership roles that have contributed to his extensive background in creating products that generate incremental revenue and ensure a high standard of excellence in user experience. Prior to joining The Seattle Times in August, 2014, Pelter served as the Head of Global Product Management for Amazon Student. Before joining Amazon, he oversaw product management at Outerwall in his role as Senior Director, Product Management for its 20,000 kiosk Coinstar line of business.

Pelter’s over 20 years of business and product management experience also includes starting and running his own company, Insidetrip.com, and pricing leadership roles at T-Mobile and Alaska Airlines. He earned his Bachelor’s degree from The University of Michigan Ross School of Business and his MBA from the Olin School of Business, Washington University.

As Editorial Page Editor, Kate Riley has oversight of the opinion voice of The Seattle Times and the editorial staff.

An award-winning journalist, Riley joined The Seattle Times in May 2002 as an Editorial Writer and Columnist, focusing on energy issues and urban-rural tensions. Riley started her daily newspaper career at The Times-owned Walla Walla Union-Bulletin in 1985 where she covered agriculture and business. In 1988, she moved to the Tri-City Herald, where she covered business and education, served as Assistant to the Publisher, Editorial Writer and, finally, as Editorial Page Editor.

A Redmond High School graduate, Riley graduated from the University of Washington with majors in economics and communications. Riley is a former board member for the Association of Opinion Journalists (formerly the National Conference of Editorial Writers), and previously served as Editor of the Masthead, its quarterly journal. Additionally, she chaired the organization’s ethics, innovations and nominating committees.