Building an Economy that Works for Everyone

2017 Annual Report

Our Mission

The Economic Opportunity Institute’s mission is to build an economy that works for everyone by advancing public policies that promote educational opportunity, good jobs, healthy families and workplaces, and a dignified retirement for all.


Program Highlights

Paid Family and Medical Leave: 

1*xl6aQja-8xDKjyoSE7yiGQWashingtonians have sent tens of thousands of emails and made hundreds of visits to legislators with the simple message: a new baby, ailing parent, or cancer diagnosis should not mean financial calamity. On June 30, 2017, the Washington Legislature responded, passing a comprehensive paid family and medical leave program with strong bipartisan support, signed by Governor Jay Inslee in July.

The Washington Work and Family Coalition, convened by EOI, had been working towards this day for more than a decade. This was made possible by EOI’s research and the power the coalition of labor and community partners built through organizing city- and state-level campaigns for paid sick days and other issues.

Tax Reform: 

7660118_web1_170712-SEA-burbank-incometax_1-1024x683@2xJust a few months after EOI and the Trump-Proof Seattle Coalition proposed a tax on the wealthy, the Seattle City Council unanimously passed a progressive income tax on July 10, 2017 to help finance priorities like ending the homelessness crisis, providing transit, offsetting federal budget cuts, and reducing current regressive taxes, such as property, B&O or sales taxes.

The legislation will place a 2.25 percent tax rate on income over $250,000 a year for individuals, or $500,000 for married couples filing jointly. The tax will not affect any income earned below those thresholds. It is currently working its way to the Washington Supreme Court, where the city and EOI seek to overturn a 1930s ruling limiting progressive taxes.


Financial Summary

2017 Snapshot


Preliminary figures, subject to CPA review; represented on an accrual basis for fiscal year 1/1/17 to 12/31/17

3 Ways You Can Make An Impact

2107 NumbersYou can help build an economy that works for everyone.

  1. Support EOI with a donation, one time or monthly. Ask your employer if they will match your gift – many do! Visit
  2. Stay informed and share policy news with your friends– visit to get our newsletter, like us on Facebook at, or follow us on Twitter at @eoionline.
  3. Ask your company or organization to sponsor EOI’s annual event – it’s a win-win for both! Email Sam Hatzenbeler, Development Director, for details at



Thank You!

Makini Howell - preferred photo 8.17.17

Makini Howell, 2017 EOI Board President

“Washington’s workers face enormous threats and uncertain futures. In 2017, I watched people in our communiites work hard, day in and day out, to make ends meet and provide for their families. But some of our most basic rights are still too far out of reach, even for those of us who are middle class – things like enrolling our young ones in daycare and preschool, pursuing a college degree  accessing health care, or saving for retirement. 

But thanks to the support of generous donors, 2017 was also a banner year for success for workers. After 20 years of advocacy, organizing and coalition building, EOI won the most progressive and universal paid family and medical leave policy in the country. And, for the first time in 80 years, we catalyzed passage of a progressive income tax on Seattle’s wealthiest households, which will help finance priorities like affordable housing, reducing homelessness, investing in public transit, and reversing our current regressive system.

Our team and the Economic Opportunity Institute works hard each day to put workers and families first, and we can do that because of the generosity of community members like you. From the entire staff and board of EOI, thank you for helping us build a foundation of equity and opportunity for all.”

Photo 2

John, Sarah, Marilyn, Matthew, Gabriela, Melanie, Aaron and Sam

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