About IWF


New Enterprises, New Hope

The Institute for Washington’s Future (IWF) is a non-profit 501(c)3 that strives to increase citizen participation in our democratic institutions, reverse the economic marginalization of low-income people in our society, protect the environment, create and preserve family-wage jobs, and increase our quality of life.

The Institute promotes rural enterprises responsive to crucial environmental and economic challenges. It builds community investment and re-empowers rural economies to create jobs, intellectual capital, and self-determination. IWF targets rural communities because opportunities for creating a more sustainable national economy converge here. We believe that local partnerships of growers, businesses, farm workers, and public agencies can initiate solutions to renewable energy, climate change, and an affordable food supply. Recent projects have focused on biomass energy production, sustainable farming, and increasing opportunities for low income people to earn a livelihood in agriculture.

Fostering Local Initiative

We believe that industries arising from local initiative more effectively improve regional economic health. We are committed to business models that include a wide spectrum of participants so that economic gains are absorbed more deeply into surrounding communities. Democracy thrives where there is broad participation in commercial success.

History of the Institute

The Institute was founded in April 1995 by the Coalition for a Livable Washington, a group of environmental, labor, religious, and community organizations which came together in the early 1990s to resolve the clashes between local environmentalists and displaced timber workers.Since then, it has participated in several large studies including a study on Seattle Metropolitics and State and Local Taxes in Washington State.

With this experience, the Institute has moved into direct community development projects that promote our values. We recognize the need for non-profit community advocacy groups to coordinate tangible projects that bring groups together and produce a sustainable future.

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