UWAA Introduces New Trustees for 2022–2023

The University of Washington Alumni Association welcomes new trustees and board president

The University of Washington Alumni Association (UWAA) Board of Trustees is responsible for managing UWAA affairs and setting the tone and direction for the association. In keeping with the UWAA’s mission of broad-based engagement, UWAA trustees represent a wide range of viewpoints, backgrounds and experiences.


UW Alumni Association, 206.543.0540

SEATTLE, Wash. – The University of Washington Alumni Association announced the election of five new voting members to their Board of Trustees. The Board of Trustees provides strategic oversight in keeping with the UWAA’s mission of supporting the UW and higher education in the state of Washington.

“The UWAA board embodies the diversity of our alumni community and the power of public higher education to change lives and make an impact on Washington and the world.” said Paul Rucker, ’95, ’02, vice president for alumni and stakeholder engagement at the UW and UWAA executive director. “We believe that the strong track records of service that each of these extraordinary individuals brings to the UWAA will allow them to build upon the organization’s legacy of making a difference for current students and alumni.”

The five new trustees represent a diverse range of experience and expertise, and include graduates from all three UW campuses. Their three-year terms began Aug. 1. The new trustees include:

John Amaya, ’01, ’05 — At-large trustee — Formerly a senior advisor in the Department of Homeland Security, appointed by President Barack Obama, Washington, D.C., attorney John Amaya credits the UW with shaping him into the person he is today. “The lessons, the learned experiences both good and bad, an instilled commitment to service, all helped to develop the gateway to success for my career and life,” Amaya writes. “I don’t think I could have experienced that combination anywhere else.”

Danielle DuCré, ’08 — At-large trustee — Danielle DuCré is the Major Gifts Officer at Mid-Pacific Institute in Honolulu, Hawaii, a premier educational institute, preparing young people for success in college, and life, for more than a century. An active member of the UW alumni community, DuCré has made Husky connections in Washington D.C. and Honolulu, Hawaii, where she now resides.

Matt EchoHawk-Hayashi, ’00 — At-large trustee — Matthew Echohawk-Hayashi is the principal organization development and leadership consultant for Headwater People, where he has has a particular interest in supporting community-led projects that improve systems in Native American organizations and agencies. He credits the UW with helping him explore the historical contexts that shaped his, his parents’ and his grandparents’ experiences and that shape his work today.

Janet Phan, ’09, ’13 — At-large trustee — First in her family to go to a four-year university, Janet T. Phan is grateful to the professors and counselors at the Foster School of Business who saw her potential and helped her navigate the UW. Phan is the founder and executive director of Thriving Elements, a non-profit organization with a mission to create access and opportunities for underserved, underrepresented girls in STEM in order to bridge the gender disparity in STEM fields. The organization focuses on empowerment through mentorship, a topic she spoke about at TEDxZurich in 2020. In 2022, Janet published Boldly You: A story about discovering what you’re capable of when you show up for yourself, a memoir and self-help book looking at her hardships and life lessons through the lens of resilience and strength. Janet currently works as a Senior Technical Product Manager for Amazon’s Project Kuiper, with a mission to bridge the digital divide. She previously held roles at Microsoft, The Boeing Company, and PwC.

Eugene Saburi, ’93 — International trustee — Eugene Saburi is a third-generation Husky who describes himself as an “accidental techie” who graduated with a degree in Japanese Language and Literature and ended up working for Microsoft in Japan. He is now the chief business officer of Treasure Data, a marketing technology company based in Mountain View, California. In this role, he is responsible for all customer-facing functions, including sales, marketing, professional services, and customer support. Saburi continues to treasure the lifelong connections he made with professors and fellow students.

A new president

The UW is a family affair for incoming UWAA President Kris Lambright, ’86, who began her term Aug. 1, 2022. The College Spark Washington CFO and her brother Eric were students at the same time along with her mother, Beryl Simpson, who was attending UW School of Law. Meanwhile, her father, Jim Lambright, was across campus serving as a UW football coach. She grew up running through the tunnels of Husky Stadium and bouncing up and down on the track mats. Lambright cites her experiences as a member of the Husky Marching Band as an important part of her college experience that reinforced the value of hard work and paying attention to details.

Lambright strongly believes every child should have the opportunity to pursue higher education no matter their background, income or ethnicity. She has dedicated her career to this ideal, serving as CFO of College Spark Washington, an organization that works to help low-income students become college-ready and earn their degrees. Before that, Kris worked with the YWCA Seattle-King-Snohomish from 1999 to 2020, serving as Chief Financial Officer since 2004. She was recognized by the Puget Sound Business Journal as 2009’s CFO of the Year. A Northwest native, she lives in Seattle with her husband Tim and enjoys rooting for UW and pro sports teams in addition to walking, gardening and reading.