Increasing U.S. Access for International Tourists, Students and Workers

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Increasing U.S. Access for International Tourists, Students and Workers

And opportunities for Washington state

With opening remarks from:
United States Representative Suzan DelBene (WA – 1st District)

Hon. Stewart Verdery
Monument Policy Group
Former Assistant Secretary of Homeland Security for Policy

David Blandford
Vice President, Communications, Visit Seattle

Visakan Ganeson
Executive Director, International Education, Everett Community College

Mike Gempler
Executive Director, Washington Growers League

February 17, 2015
3:30pm – 5:30pm
Seattle Metro Chamber of Commerce
1301 Fifth Ave, Suite 1500
Seattle, WA 98101

$20 For Members | $30 For Non-Members
Includes wine and cheese



Join the Washington Council on International Trade and the Trade Development Alliance of Greater Seattle for a panel discussion on the impact of current U.S. visa policies on foreign tourists, students, and workers. We will discuss the Jobs Originated Through Launching Travel (JOLT) Act, which was introduced in 2013 and could make important reforms to U.S. visa policies. Other panelists will come from the tech industry, higher education and Washington state agriculture. We will hear their perspective on why current U.S. visa policies negatively impact their organizations and what their views are toward finding a solution.

International tourism is our state’s second largest services export (after software), at close to $4 billion in 2010. The Washington tourism industry – which already employs 144,000 people and generate $1 billion in state and local tax revenues – would benefit significantly if it were easier for travelers from places like Brazil, India and China to visit.

Washington state ranked 11th in the nation in 2014 for number of international students, contributing $737 million into our state’s economy. Yet it is increasingly difficult for these students to secure visas to study at accredited U.S. educational institutions.

Visa barriers also impede the success of many businesses in Washington; international customers have a difficult time traveling to our state to do business, and foreign employees of locally-based companies cannot visit their Washington offices without delays.

  • How Mexico is benefiting by the rise of Asia
  • The growth of high tech manufacturing in Mexico and subsequent highly skilled middle class
  • How recent reforms are increasing Mexico’s global competitiveness


Registration: The cost for this program is $20 for members and $30 for for non-members. Questions? Contact Samantha Paxton/206.389.7319 / [email protected] .

 With thanks to:




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