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Washington Technology Industry Association Awarded $300,000 from the State of Washington for its Advanced Technology Cluster

Nonprofit Receives Second Grant to Continue Cluster Momentum, Powering Innovation in Web3, Quantum Information Science and Artificial Intelligence

Washington Technology Industry Association (WTIA), a non-profit organization dedicated to fostering a robust, equity-centered technology sector that empowers thriving communities, today announced it is the recipient of a $300,000 grant from the State of Washington’s Department of Commerce. This grant will enable the organization to extend its Advanced Technology Cluster, driving private investment, job creation, and world-leading innovation throughout the state. 

Washington State is a pioneering force in technology innovation, with its robust ecosystem of research institutions, startups, and established industry leaders fostering a statewide culture of innovation and entrepreneurship. This position has not only driven job creation and economic prosperity locally and regionally, but influences and shapes the broader national and global technology landscape. Web3, quantum information science and artificial intelligence (AI) are no longer nascent – with widespread adoption on the horizon, the Advanced Technology Cluster fulfills a critical need to support connectivity and collaboration industry-wide.

“Receiving this second grant from the State Department of Commerce validates our team’s hard work over the last two years,” said Michael Schutzler, CEO, WTIA. “As we embark on the Cluster’s evolution, we acknowledge the progress made, yet the enormity of the task ahead. Washington is poised to lead the country in these transformative technologies, and this grant fuels our determination to continue driving investment, workforce development and innovation throughout the state.”

The Cluster’s mission is to establish Washington and the PNW as the best in the world for advanced and emerging technologies to be created, grown, and applied. Grant funding combined with existing WTIA programs will enable the Cluster will focus on five key areas: (1) mapping the Advanced Technology ecosystem; (2) attracting and accelerating startups; (3) building a diverse workforce including women, BIPOC, and other underrepresented groups; (4) advancing a supportive policy environment; and (5) creating strong partnerships.

The Cluster unites corporations, academia, startups, government and investors to identify growth opportunities for the technology industry. Since its launch in 2022, the Cluster produced a landscape report on the State of Quantum Information Sciences in Washington, worked with the US Blockchain Coalition to create a State of Web3 Across the US Report and helped support the formation of a Blockchain Working Group in Washington State. 

The organization also produced dozens of educational and networking events, recruited more than 125 new members and helped facilitate over 600 conversations between startups and investors. The Cluster connected with state agencies to facilitate dialogue and work toward a supportive policy environment for advanced technologies, partnered with 1871 to launch a national Web3 Innovation Lab and produced a track at the WTIA FullConTech conference to convene stakeholders from industry, government, and academia to discuss needs and opportunities for the state to become a global leader in advanced technologies.

“As we establish Washington State as a global epicenter for Web3, quantum information science and AI, diverse representation is not just a commitment but a strategic necessity. By actively fostering inclusivity, we not only harness the full spectrum of talent, but fortify the foundation for sustained innovation and leadership. WTIA is dedicated to championing this ethos, making equitable access a cornerstone as we drive technological advancements that will shape our collective future,” continued Schutzler.

This project was supported by the Innovation Cluster Accelerator Program (ICAP) by the Washington Department of Commerce. For more information or to join Washington Technology Industry Association or the Cluster, please visit here.


About WTIA

The Washington Technology Industry Association (WTIA) is a consortium that includes a not-for-profit member trade association, a not-for-profit tech apprenticeship intermediary (Apprenti), and a for profit corporation providing business services (Portalus). The organization’s mission is to foster a robust, equity-centered technology sector that empowers thriving communities. We recruit technology companies and allies that view diversity as a competitive advantage, value collaboration as essential to sustainable growth, and fully embrace the opportunity to partner with and empower the communities in which we operate.

This project was supported by Grant No. 07 79 07630 awarded by Economic Development Administration. Points of view in this document are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the official position or policies of the Economic Development Administration. Grant funds are administered by the Office of Economic Development & Competitiveness, Washington State Department of Commerce.



FINN Partners for WTIA 



  • Nick Ellingson

    Nick Ellingson started his career in software sales on the Eastside before joining the WTIA team. Now he finds new members for the WTIA community, listening to feedback about events and resources, and finding fun and creative ways to get more people involved with WTIA. In his personal time, he can be found playing video games, playing basketball, reading, writing, or spending time with friends. If the Chicago Bulls are playing, he's watching.

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