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Weekday: Live from Tacoma!

Steve Scher
05/01/2008 at 10:00 a.m.

Downtown Tacoma is our subject this hour. The city is working on a new strategic plan to develop the downtown economy. What businesses are key to making downtown bustle? Russell Investments, with more than $200 billion is assets, is thinking of leaving town. How important is the financial company to the city's future? What about the nightlife? How is downtown defined anyway?

Also this hour, we talk with Dick Marzano, lifetime longshoreman and president of the Port of Tacoma Commission. Some legislators proposed merging the ports of Seattle and Tacoma. We'll hear what he thinks about that, and how the competing ports have found ways to cooperate.

Roxanne Murphy handles community relations for Tacoma's Community and Economic Development Department and is working on the downtown strategic plan. In her spare time she helps run Love Tacoma, where she organizes "urban play–time in Tacoma's hot spots" for 20– and 30–something residents. She moved to Tacoma from Seattle five years ago.
Steph Farber owns LeRoy Jewelers and the Art Stop gallery with his wife Phyllis Harrison. Steph's father started the business in downtown Tacoma in 1941. Farber is a bench jeweler and a longtime downtown activist.
Jeff Becker blogs about Tacoma at He runs the Five Views Technologies company out of his home, and is an IT consultant, Christian minister, self–published author and member of the Republican party. He lives in Tacoma's Five Views neighborhood.
Dick Marzano is president of the Port of Tacoma Commission. He was first elected a commission member in 1995. He's worked at the port as a longshoreman for more than 35 years. Marzano is on the executive board of the International Longshore and Warehouse Union Local 23 and was the local's president from 1989–95. He lives in University Place.

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