Community Rallies to Reconfigure Treehouse Offices for Statewide Expansion

By Jesse Colman, Treehouse Public Relations Specialist

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With a reconfiguration of our office space during the summer, Treehouse marked a major milestone in our 2022 goal for every youth in foster care across Washington state to graduate from high school at the same rate as their peers, with support and a plan to launch successfully into adulthood.

“We simply outgrew our space. It was absolutely critical that we make better use of the space we had to accommodate our growth,” said Ray Oen, Treehouse’s Chief Financial and Administrative Officer.

When Treehouse first moved into the 2100 Building in 2003, we had a small staff of 35. Since the development of Graduation Success in 2012, our impact has grown exponentially, and so has our staff. By the end of 2017, we had 111 employees and we were bursting at the seams. The office space was beginning to interfere with our expansion efforts.

Led by Treehouse’s Executive Project Manager, Julie Engel, a plan was developed. With the community rallying behind her, Julie and her incredible team—including Ray, Sandra Wong, William Wood, Joanne Heppert, Eileen Graham and Jessica Ross—got to work. Treehouse went from preliminary planning to the office that exists today in just over a year.

“A project of this magnitude does not finish on time, on budget and with so much donated support by accident. So many community members were invested in our success,” Ray said. “Julie’s attention to detail, her adaptability and focus on building trust with everyone involved made it seamless.”

The office now has a 20-percent increase in full work stations, 30 touchdown work spaces for Treehouse’s remote staff and 10 small- to medium-size meeting rooms, including a wellness room designed for nursing moms. The improvements were all made within the original footprint of the space.

“It’s pretty incredible to think about how everything fell into place,” Ray said. “Whenever we made a donation request of our partners, the response was always yes.”

About 25 percent of the total project cost was provided through in-kind goods and services, including discount prices for materials and labor.

We would like express our gratitude to the community for coming together to make our space ready to serve youth in foster care across the state. With special thanks to:

  • Christine Chaney | Designer
  • Keith Engel | Lile Moving and Storage
  • Lee Falck | MEMO Furniture
  • Doug Gardner | Working Spaces
  • Tracy Marts | Working Spaces
  • Dan Murphy | Working Spaces
  • Matt Gladney | Project Manager, Sellen
  • Nick Mykhaylyuk | Site Superintendent, Sellen
  • John Tupper | Project Engineer, Sellen
  • Larisa Hauser | Project Manager, Hauser Counsulting
  • Charmaigne Jones | Building Director, 2100 Building
  • Bob Noble | Bob Noble Photography
  • Marvin Yamaguchi | Architect
  • Armstrong
  • Cochrane Inc.
  • Crimson Graphics
  • Daussault Engineering
  • Emerald City Custom Interiors
  • Evergreen Construction Specialties
  • ezoBord
  • Friant Furniture
  • Hauser Consulting
  • Jet City
  • Lile Moving & Storage
  • McKinstry
  • NP Information Systems
  • Pacific Office Automation
  • PopCap
  • Shaw Industries
  • Splinter and Slag
  • Superior Office Installation
  • Veca Electric and Technologies
  • Walkers Cleaning Service
  • Wilsonart

Thanks to these incredible contributions from the community, Treehouse has the room to grow into the next chapter of our history, meet our 2022 graduation equity goal and continue our effort:

To create a world where every child that has experienced foster care has the opportunities and support they need to pursue their dreams and launch successfully into adulthood.

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About the Author

Jesse Colman is the Public Relations Specialist for Treehouse. He is passionate about building relationships, storytelling and community development.

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