"The Wright Family – Preparing the Next Generation," Family Business Legacy Series, Davis Wright Tremaine Webinar
The Space Needle is perhaps Seattle's most iconic landmark. It was conceptualized in a doodle on a napkin and became the centerpiece of the 1962 World's Fair. It cost $4.5 million to build in 1962 and was renovated in 2018 for approximately $100 million.
In 1982, Howard S. Wright II bought out his 4 partners and became the sole owner of the Space Needle. He passed on ownership to his 5 children—4 sons and 1 daughter. In addition to the Space Needle, the Wright family owns and operates the Chihuly Garden and Glass Exhibition. The Wright family trace their history in family business to the founding of Howard S. Wright Construction Co., in Port Townsend, Washington, in 1885.
We were joined at this Legacy Series event by Howard S. Wright III and his nephew Alex Rolfe, the first fifth-generation grandchild and first fifth-generation member of the board as well as by Chris Ackerley, one of the four independent directors on the board. Chris chairs the Governance and Nomination Committee and joined the board in 2016. Our speakers discuss the challenges and opportunities of effective transition in a family business.