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Stephen Brown

2023 Seattle City Council (District 1)

I am running a campaign about the future, about the Seattle we can build together, with creativity, courage, and hard work.

My name is Stephen Brown, President and founder of Eltana Bagels, a father of two and a proud West Seattle resident. I am running for Seattle City Council – Position 1 – representing West Seattle and South Park. Seattle is home. I love Seattle and I want to see it thrive; that is why I am running. I want to help create a more vibrant, livable, and inclusive city for all of us who call this great city home. I am fundamentally new to politics; I have never sought elected office and had not seriously considered running until a few years ago when I experienced keeping my bagel business open, un-boarded, calm and generous at the epicenter of the George Floyd protests and ensuing CHOP occupancy. During this time, I demonstrated that I have the temperament for wise, empathetic, even-handed public service. Watching our city struggle to emerge from the pandemic and related disruptions solidifies that the time to get more involved is now. My career has been spent founding and running companies. And this blend of entrepreneurial vision, drive and pragmatism is a vital combination to not only see our way to the future, but to actually make it happen. I have created ventures, venues and experiences that provide joy and sustenance while building deep social connections between people. I have experienced successes, failures and much in between. With Eltana, I have built a multi-unit retail chain, created a neighborhood delivery network and supplied the region’s finest grocery stores. In Eltana’s first 12 years, we employed thousands of people providing high paying jobs with innovative benefits created to enrich the journey and life specifics of our workforce. When the pandemic hit, Eltana learned just how viscerally people crave bread in times of fear. Post crisis, Eltana continues to thrive. My sole government experience was as the Lead Entrepreneur of the Seattle Monorail Project (SMP) from 2003 to 2007. We sought to bring an elevated transit route to join the west side (including West Seattle) neighborhoods of our city. My job at the SMP was to conceive of the traditional (tickets) and alternative revenue sources that could make the monorail an efficient service for the city. I was the SMP representative to the task force that created the ORCA card we all use now for our regional transit. I am an immigrant to the United States. As a Canadian undergraduate at McGill University in Montreal, I received a bachelor’s degree in U.S. History – foreshadowing a move south a few years later. There is no nostalgia in me, or in this campaign. I am running a campaign about the future, about the Seattle we can build together, with creativity, courage, and hard work.


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