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Spokane

Stephen B. Smart
Fall 2017

The accidental novelist

What began as a way to avoid going stir crazy while recuperating from a nearly fatal equestrian accident has become an award-winning western genre trilogy that blends suspenseful mystery and the allure of lost fortunes with good old-fashioned frontier fortitude.

Landscape architect STEPHEN B. SMART ’75 calls himself an unlikely novelist. He’s spent most of his life outdoors, designing everything from elaborate gardens and water features to a driveway gate cleverly concealed to appear as a fallen ponderosa pine. And in his free time, he’s more likely to be found atop a favorite mule exploring the Pacific Northwest backcountry than sitting at a keyboard … » More …

Fall 2016

The Epidemic

“This program saved my life,” he says as he enters the room. Kris, 37, is in the Spokane Regional Health District methadone clinic where he has come for treatment of heroin addiction since 2008. The intense, dark-haired man speaks openly, earnestly, as if he has nothing left to lose.

Kris says his journey into addiction began, “Quite simply, by a doctor.” Struggling with pain from a minor car accident in 1999, he was prescribed increasingly stronger doses of hydrocodone and OxyContin over a nine-year period. The FBI eventually raided the unethical physician and closed his practice, leaving patients like Kris stranded and facing withdrawal when … » More …

Land Expressions - class note thumb
Spring 2016

A grand gathering place

Cougar-owned landscape architecture and design firm Land Expressions in Spokane won a top national award in December for work on Spokane’s Huntington Park and the Spokane Tribal Gathering Place.

This project won over much larger design build projects from all over the country. The Grand Award from the National Association of Landscape Professionals (NALP) “is the biggest award we can receive in our industry,” says Dave Nelson ’83, president and owner of the company.

 

The Land Expressions team—which includes senior landscape architect Clayton Varick ’00 and landscape architects Nicholas Hamad ’10 and Fernando Camargo ’10—had a very good year in 2015.

They won the … » More …

Police training in a new light
Spring 2016

Police training in a new light

The call came into 9-1-1 from a Spokane YMCA last October: A middle-aged man was threatening to break the kneecaps of an eight-year-old, because he said the boy could “ruin my NBA career.”

Corporal Jordan Ferguson of the Spokane Police Department responded, fully aware of the suspect’s antagonistic and unpredictable behavior. Ferguson’s body camera footage shows what happened next.

In the lobby of the YMCA, an employee first describes the man’s erratic statements. Ferguson tracks the man to the gym, who then walks away yelling. Rather than restraining the man immediately, Ferguson asks him questions and listens carefully and calmly, taking his time as the … » More …

Carl Maxey (Courtesy Gonzaga University)
Winter 2015

Black Spokane

Dwayne Mack was, to say the least, skeptical when his faculty mentor at Washington State University, LeRoy Ashby, suggested he write his doctoral dissertation on Spokane’s black history.

“I thought to myself, ‘Wow, every time we pay a visit to Spokane, we rarely even see black people,’” recalls Mack, who was brought up in Brooklyn and received his master’s degree from a historically black college, North Carolina Central University. “There couldn’t be enough black people to do a study.”

Then he started researching Spokane’s African-American history and realized he had “struck gold.” Spokane’s African-American community was small—historically averaging between 1 and 2 percent of Spokane’s … » More …

Winter 2015

Liberty Ciderworks

What are trained architects doing making hard cider?

“It’s a great beverage with a great legacy,” says Austin Dickey ’00, who tasted his first cider while visiting Europe after graduating from high school. He and colleague Rick Hastings share a passion for traditional hard cider.

After experimenting with homemade batches for years, the two began comparing notes and decided in 2012 to transform their hobby into a commercial venture.

“For us it’s all about the apples and yeast,” says Dickey.

Liberty Ciderworks, located in downtown Spokane, became the state’s first urban craft cidery and was among the initial wave of artisanal cider producers to … » More …

First Words
Spring 2013

Tastes like Beethoven

The 1909 National Apple Show in Spokane featured competitions, band concerts, vaudeville shows, and 1,525,831 apples. Spokane schools closed for a day so all the students could visit the exhibition, which spread across three and a half acres and featured intricate displays such as a giant American flag composed of apples and boxcars full of neatly packed apples.

Growers, shippers, bankers, and hundreds of the merely curious from around the Northwest flocked to the exhibition to revel in the fruit that Washington grew so well. When everyone had had their fill of the spectacle, the whole show was packed onto a special train and shipped … » More …

Indaba founders Bobby Enslow ’06, ’08 and Ben Doornink ’07
Spring 2012

Indaba Coffee

Spokane’s Indaba Coffee is not your typical café. With a Zulu name that loosely means a gathering of tribal leaders to discuss important matters, the spot just north of the Spokane River is a resource for locals. The business has bulletin boards on the ceiling and space shared with a small nonprofit bookstore. It serves residents of the affordable housing project just upstairs as well as the attorneys who work at the county courthouse down the street.

It’s the lively atmosphere founder and owner Bobby Enslow ’06, ’08 MBA is trying to brew up. “This is a place where successful people can gather and … » More …

It's Right Here: An interview with Spokane's economic development officer Tom Reese

Washington State Magazine talks with Tom Reese, the economic development officer in the Spokane mayor’s office, about the knowledge economy, the role of higher education in economic development, and the planned university district surrounding Washington State University’s Spokane campus. Reese is an adjunct faculty member in the Interdisciplinary Design Institute at WSU Spokane.

Tom Reese: Spokane is redefining itself. I think it’s really interesting that the world’s fair focused on Spokane and the environment. Spokane at that time [1974] was in the throes of being a resource-based economy, timber, and manufacturing and processing of those resources, and how to do it [correctly] was really … » More …