Sitting on the Puget Sound in the Pacific Northwest, Seattle is a beautiful city that balances a bustling metropolis with surrounding nature. Washington State’s most populous city is surrounded by thousands of acres of parkland, crystalline waters, and evergreen forests. While many know of Seattle’s beauty, few realize how this historic city has been a champion for women throughout the decades.
In the late 1880s, Seattle saw the first woman appointed to the Seattle Library Commission (1890) and the first woman to be hired by the local police department (1893). The early 1990s saw Seattle women given the right to vote (1910), the first woman elected to city council (1924) and the first elected female mayor (1927). Women’s history continued to thrive throughout the years in Seattle right through to today.
While Seattle is known as being the epicenter of the tech industry—with behemoths such as Amazon and Microsoft calling the city home—it also happens to be the second best city in the United States for female entrepreneurs (coming in second to San Francisco). According to a study by personal finance site, Nerd Wallet, with an average of 12.5 businesses for every 100 Seattle residents, almost half of those businesses are founded by women. In short, Seattle is a breeding ground for female entrepreneurs keen on realizing their visions.
One of the reasons Seattle has topped the list for female entrepreneurs is because of local organizations such as Capitol Hill Entrepreneurial Women (CHEW). CHEW is a network of independent, women-owned businesses that are dedicated to fostering female entrepreneurship within the Seattle community. CHEW helps stimulate the local economy by supporting female business owners.
Unearth Women recently partnered with Getaround, a forward-thinking peer-to-peer car sharing service, to spotlight some favorite female-owned businesses in Seattle. From an artisanal ice cream shop founded by Molly Moon Nietzel—an activist for women’s worker rights—to the longest running lesbian bar in the United States, Getaround is offering readers $50 in free driving credit to explore this iconic city through the lens of supporting its female entrepreneurs.