A Japanese snowbell tree outside the YWCA Trinity Place Apartments has been dedicated to local icon and travel expert Rick Steves for his support of the residence.
A group of about two dozen people gathered outside Trinity Place, located at 19321 46th Ave. W., on a rainy Thursday afternoon to celebrate the dedication.
Attendees included residents of Trinity Place, YWCA and Lynnwood city officials, members of the Lynnwood Human Services Commission and Edmonds Rotary members, among others.
Human Services Commission Chair Michelle Reitan introduced Rick Steves. She said she has known Steves for about 20 years because they go to the same church.
“I have been impressed with Rick’s generosity,” she said. “Not just his financial generosity, but his generosity with his name.”
She said with his name and influence, he constantly encourages others to give back and participate in charity work.
YWCA Executive Director Mary Anne Dillon also spoke about her relationship with Steves.
“Over the years, I have heard you say that what you have done is not particularly saintly or particularly inspired,” she said, “but I disagree. You have inspired us and given us hope.”
Hope, she said, for families to unify and the hope for them to build a better life.
Lynnwood Mayor Nicola Smith said it was wonderful to be standing next to Steves, a businessman, local leader and philanthropist. She recalled a recent City Council meeting when Steves said he had a lot of respect for those working on the front lines.
“Thank you for your words, your thoughts and your actions,” she said, adding that these acts are needed “in our world right now.”
Steves said he tries to nudge his friends and colleagues to contribute to their community.
“It can’t happen with one man,” he said. “Or one service group, or one government body. But when we work together, you see the results.”
He said creating positive positive changes help everyone in the community.
“I hope we can all inspire our neighbors and workmates,” he said.
He also said Trinity Place is a “springboard” for the lives of the mothers living there and their children.
Steves donated the Trinity Place transitional housing complex, which he has owned and operated in partnership with the Rotary and the YWCA since 2005, to the YWCA earlier this year. Trinity Place provides housing to women in need and their children.
–Story and photos by Natalie Covate