Joseph A. Scorcio
March 13, 1956 – February 14, 2024

Joseph Anthony Scorcio, 67, of University Place, passed away on Feb. 14, 2024, three years after his cancer diagnosis.

Born in Spokane, WA on March 13, 1956 to Mary J. (Ferrante) and Joseph Scorcio, he attended Ferris High School and earned his BA and Masters from the University of Idaho.

Joe had a fulfilling career in the public sector, retiring as the SeaTac City Manager in 2019. From 1984 to 2013, he held several positions in Pierce County and was instrumental in the development of the Chambers Creek Master Plan and the Chambers Bay Golf Course.

Joe recently served as a consultant to the Seattle Southside Chamber of Commerce, where he provided executive management assistance since his 2019 retirement after 42 years in local government management.

“Joe was a long-time champion for Southwest King County and his contributions to our community will have long-lasting impact,” said Annie McGrath, President/CEO of the Seattle Southside Chamber of Commerce. “Joe was a dear friend to our Chamber, providing steady leadership over many years. He was instrumental in guiding our work with the Chamber’s strategic plan, bylaw reviews and updates, and board and staff development. But most of all, he was a dear friend and a true believer in our founding principle that ‘Together, we are Stronger.’ Joe relished in the relationships and connections he built with the Seattle Southside Chamber community and understood the power in working together to move forward with positive change. He will be greatly missed.”

Joe was actively involved with various Chambers of Commerce throughout his decades of public service, including 17 years as a Board member with the Tacoma-Pierce County Chamber. In addition, Joe served in leadership positions on numerous non-profit boards and brought extensive perspective on organizational management, board governance and policy issues. Joe always strived to use his own experiences, both good and bad, to be able to contribute to critical conversations with the Chamber staff and Board of Directors.

“Joe was fiercely honest, and had a passionate resolve to do right by the community he served,” said Andrea Reay, President/CEO of the Tacoma-Pierce County Chamber. “He was steadfast in his support to be part of finding a solution that could benefit everyone. That honesty, resolve and support are hallmarks of Joe and how he lived his life and will forever be an inspiration to me and I know countless others.

“Joe was my mentor, throughout the last 10+ years of my career as a Chamber Executive, as he was for many others,” Reay added. “But he was so much more. He was a friend that became family, became part of me, part of my heart. He will be deeply missed, but never forgotten.”

Current SeaTac City Manager Carl Cole offered the following statement about Joe:

“Joe Scorcio served the City of SeaTac for more than half a decade. Scorcio started with the City in 2013 as Director of Community Economic Development and was promoted to City Manager in 2017 and retired in 2019 as a Special Advisor.

“During his tenure, Scorcio was instrumental in negotiating a 2018 Interlocal Agreement between the City and the Port of Seattle which strengthened the relationship between the two agencies and established long-term benefits for City residents and businesses. Scorcio worked diligently to enhance the City with a series of economic development projects which brought in more affordable housing, rental options and businesses to the thriving City.

“Scorcio will be missed by many here in the City.”

Joe was happiest on a golf course, loved celebrating your successes and enjoyed finding connections with others. Quick with a smile, Joe always lit up any room he entered with a quick wit and true interest in all he met.

Joe is survived by his wife, Kathryn, his stepdaughters, Erika Arnberg and Dana Arnberg, brother Frank (Susie), sister JoAnn (Patrick), nieces, nephews, and cousins.

On a personal note, I was lucky enough to know and work with Joe through serving on the Board of Directors for the Seattle Southside Chamber of Commerce. He advised board members, led at least one all-day retreat, and shared his amazing wisdom freely and openly. Joe was so devoted to his work that he appeared via Zoom from his hospital bed for our most recent retreat in October! I always enjoyed his quick smile, sense of wonder and whimsy, and appreciated his help. We’re all luckier and wiser to have known him.

Everyone at South King Media sends their deepest condolences to all who knew, worked with and loved Joe.

A Gathering for Joe will be announced at a future date. If desired, donate to a charity of your choosing in Joe’s memory.

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2 replies on “OBITUARY: Former SeaTac City Manager Joseph ‘Joe’ Scorcio passed away Feb. 14”

  1. Oh, so sad! We met Joe and Kathy when they had seats near ours for Seattle Storm games back at Key Arena. Nicest guy you’d ever meet! I’m grateful for his contributions to SeaTac. Peace to his family.

  2. Joe was a great communicator and a pleasure to work with. His support and collaborative approach made all the difference. Regret his passing.

    Brian Wilson, former Burien City Manager

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