Steve Brown is an accomplished business leader and lawyer currently working as a neutral mediator/arbitrator while serving as an active board chairman for two startup companies.
Steve’s undergraduate degrees were in accounting from the University of Puget Sound and International Business from Nyenrode University in the Netherlands. He also holds a Juris Doctor from the University of Puget Sound. He is a licensed attorney in the State of Washington and a CPA (inactive).
Starting his career Steve worked for Coopers and Lybrand (now PriceWaterhouseCoopers) auditing Native Corporations throughout Alaska and for the Oles Morrison law firm in Seattle as a litigator.
For the next 25 years Steve practiced law in Tacoma in small, boutique firms or as a solo practitioner. His greatest satisfaction came from assisting small and medium sized businesses to get started or to grow in a world of increasing complexity. He became a trusted advisor by taking the time to understand each business and each client to aid him in giving relevant advice.
For many years Steve was a member of the advisory board of Troutlodge, the world’s largest producer of live trout eggs supplying seed stock to aquaculture firms in over sixty countries. In 2005 the founding family wished to exit this business and Steve assembled a group of investors to buy it. Steve was an active Chairman of Troutlodge from 2006 to 2014 and its CEO/Chairman from 2014 to 2017. During these years the company experienced strong growth and it was successfully sold to a multi-species genetics and animal breeding firm in 2016.
During his career Steve has mediated a variety of disputes, developing an interests-based approach and working toward win-win resolutions with energy and creativity. He has also successfully negotiated M&A, partnership and other significant transactions on five continents including business purchases in South Africa, Spain, the United States and Chile; collaborative production agreements in Iran and Peru; and distributorship arrangements in Korea and Columbia.
Steve plans to spend the upcoming years as a contract attorney assisting with commercial matters; resolving differences as a mediator or negotiator and when needed an arbitrator; and using his background and education to assist as a board member for or other advisor to small and medium size businesses wishing to survive and prosper.
When not working Steve spends his time hiking, skiing, gardening and other outside activities with Shawn, his wife of 32 years. Over the past few years they have hiked a portion of the Camino in Spain, the Haute Route in Switzerland and the Way of St. Francis in Italy. They have three grown children, all pursuing careers in the medical field. They live in the north end of Tacoma.