Maury Forman was the Senior Manager for the Washington State Department of Commerce for 26 years until his retirement in 2016. His focus was on creating healthy communities and developing a culture of entrepreneurship in rural areas with programs such as Economic Gardening, Global Entrepreneurship, Scale Up, and Lemonade Day.. He is the founder and director of the award-winning Northwest Economic Development course at Central Washington University in Ellensburg, Washington where over 2,000 practitioners graduated.
Forman has won numerous awards for his work in blending humor with an understanding of economic development. In addition to his widely circulated blogs and cartoons, he has created on site game show learning tools of Economic Development Jeopardy, Who Wants to be an Economic Developer, Community Feud, and the Site Selector Dating Game. He became the first recipient of the Finkle Leadership award from the International Economic Development Council in Washington DC for his “integrity, tenacity, and philanthropic spirit in the profession.” He has written 17 economic development books including his latest, Noah's Town: Where Animals Reign, A 21st Century Fable about Disaster Preparation and Recovery .