Our economy continues to be strong as the logistics sector continues to grow. Existing logistics companies such as Lineage Logistics are using technology solutions to keep up with demand and we welcome UNFI the newest distribution facility in Lewis County. Other developments include our annual banquet where we were able to highlight successes accomplished over the last year. 



We are on track with our upcoming Smart Tank 2019 event. We have had several people from the community express interest in attending the workshops that accompany this event. All are welcome to attend this event. Workshops are led by experienced entrepreneurs many of them are flying in to participate in this event. The EDC will hold a series of workshops prior to the Smart Tank Event 2019.

The deadline to submit an application to participate in the event has been extended to March 15th, 2019. Check out our website to find more information  https://www.lewisedc.com/smarttank/



Centralia College is hosting its 26th Annual Job Fair April 23 from 10am to 1pm. This is a great opportunity to meet and recruit seasonal and future employees; and share information about your business. No cost to businesses or attendees, the college’s job fair supports up to 60 employers. The event provides a 6-foot skirted table, chairs, and breakfast and lunch refreshments for two representatives of each business. All that is required – businesses plan on hiring within six months of the event and online registration. Reserve your spot online – http://www.centralia.edu/jobresources/jobfair/. 

For more information, contact Monica Brummer, 360-623-8974 or monica.brummer@centralia.edu.



Lineage Logistics
With over 100 facilities and 600 million cubic feet, Lineage Logistics is a leading warehousing and logistics partner committed to delivering sophisticated, customized, and dependable cold chain solutions to leading food, retail, agriculture and distribution companies.

With 70 team members and 148,000 sq. ft., the Centralia, WA location is both a temperature-controlled storage warehouse as well as a co-located food manufacturing facility supplying bakery products to the foodservice industry. The Centralia manufacturing solution offers customers an integrated, under-one-roof alternative that streamlines the manufacturing, storing, distributing and transporting of product.

You can learn more about Lineage Logistics capabilities at: www.lineagelogistics.com


Centralia College Foundation Career & Technical Education Building

Centralia Coal Transition Board Supports partnership between the Centralia College Foundation and Centralia College:

Centralia, February 12, 2019 The Centralia Coal Transition Grants Economic & Community Development Board is pleased to announce it has approved a $1,300,000 grant to the Centralia College Foundation to construct a 12,000 square foot facility on the Centralia College campus to house training programs to meet current and prospective employer workforce training needs.

The proposed site for this pre-engineered building is adjacent to the technology building and is already zoned for educational use. Read the full press release here. ‘


UNFI Announces Plans

UNFI Announces Plans to Optimize Pacific Northwest Distribution Center Network

February 06, 2019:

Company to consolidate five distribution centers into a new 1.2 million square foot facility in Centralia, WA and a newly expanded facility of 800,000 square feet in Ridgefield, Washington. Read the full news release here.


Lewis EDC Annual Banquet by Business By Business

Speeches Shine Light on Progress


By Susan DeLaire

Business to Business


Lewis Economic Development Council (EDC) Chair Dan Rich kicked off the annual award banquet on Feb.21 by thanking the event sponsors, including Tires, Inc. and the Jester Auto Museum & Event Center, where the banquet was held. Rich asked elected officials present at the event to stand and be recognized, before introducing the EDC Board of Directors.


EDC Executive Director Matt Matayoshi thanked his staff for helping to put on the event and noted the number of organizations who purchased tables.


He singled out several in attendance, including J Vander Stoep, Dale Lewis from Representative Jaime Herrera Beutler’s office,Mike Marshall with Gibbs and Olson

and Maree Lerchen “who came all the way from Packwood,” he said.

“We couldn’t go a day without your support,”


Thanking Senator John Braun for the $1.5 million he secured in 2018 for the city of Winlock’s water line extension, Matayoshi said Mayor Don Bradshaw was close to finishing the project.


The TransAlta Coal Transition  Board put a total of $21 million back into the community, he said, including $2.6 million for Lewis County PUD (Public Utilities District), $1.3 million to the Centralia College Foundation and 650,000 to the Port of Chehalis.


He noted it was important not to lose sight of the fact that TransAlta will shut down  in 2025 and the importance of supporting those employees and their families.


Matayoshi remarked on some of the economic highlights over the past year, including one story resulting from the EDC Smart Tank event in 2018; Pacific Northwest

Cookie Company. Founder Callie Carpenter had an idea for a gluten-free, vegan cookie and pitched the idea at Smart Tank. “She’s gone from selling at a festival in Chehalis to (selling in) over 50 locations,” he said.


UNFI (United Natural Foods, Inc.-the new grocery distribution in Centralia) has really been an exciting project to follow, he said, adding over 350 jobs will be created when construction is complete later this year.


“The EDC had a role in that,” Matayoshi said, noting he met with the commercial broker when he was initially vetting sites.


Matayoshi said the EDC received a letter from Larry Benaroya with the Benaroya Company. Developer Tom O’Keefe purchased the property for the distribution center from Benaroya in February of 2017.


Matayoshi read from the letter, which states, “We’re writing to thank you and the Lewis Economic  Development  Council for your outstanding assistance in support of the sale of our 77-acre site to O’Keefe Development for the development of the new 1.15 million square foot UNFI state-of-the-art grocery distribution facility in Centralia.” The letter continues, “You and your team were extremely helpful in working with various City, Port, County, and State officials in positively moving the project initiatives forward including obtaining important letters of support.” Matayoshi offered many thanks to the Port of Centralia, the city of Centralia and others for their support.


Centralia College (CC) President Bob Mohrbacher introduced “the Dean team” as he called the CC deans seated at his table, and said they do all the actual work.

Mohrbacher said he really appreciated working with “Matt and his team,” and noted the quick response he receives from Matayoshi when he needs information.


The Centralia College Foundation received a $1.3 million grant for a flexible trades 12,000 square foot light industrial building.


“We’ll move the mechatronics androbotics in there,” he said. The remaining two-thirds will remain flexible space he said, adding the college will partner with schools and businesses. He noted the availability of state dollars and can work with any local businesses that need training.


Mohrbacher touched on the mobile CTE classroom, which will be housed in “something like a big construction trailer,” that can help students learn about trades options available to them.


Concluding his remarks, Mohrbacher thanked attendees for their support.


Matayoshi introduced Michael Wagar, publisher for The Chronicle. Wagar made a presentation in lieu of presenting the Russ Mohney Recreational Resource Stewardship Award, stating said he’d reached out to multiple people in the community and was unable to select someone who stood out. Wagar said he elected not to present the award for the sake of simply presenting the award, stating Mohney would have approved. Wagar talked about the award, named for the late columnist and outdoor writer, presented to either an individual or group in recognition of their work to advance outdoor stewardship and noted the award came about to be able to “do” something in partnership with the EDC to mend fences.


Past recipients included Mohney after he passed and Onalaska High School teacher Johnny Garcia in 2017.


Wagar praised The Chronicle reporter Jordon Nallion, noting he “writes like Russ,” and acknowledged Nallion’s award winning, “exhaustive reporting” on poachers in Southwest Washington, commending him for bringing the issue to the public’s  attention.


Wagar noted the “clear message” of the 2007 flood on the importance of working together as a community. “The community has a lot of work to do” to bring different agencies together, he said, and ended witha Mohney quote, “Go take a hike.”



Past Gail &Carolyn Shaw Industry Award Recipients


Reggie Hamilton 2018

J Vander Stoep 2017

Bob Guenther 2016

Bill Lotto 2015

Joanne Schwartz 2014

Frank DeVaul 2013

Thomas D. Bradley 2012

John Alexander 2011

Ed Pemerel 2010

Dr. Mark Giffey 2009

Buck Hubbert 2008

Bob Thompson 2007



Lewis EDC General Membership luncheon will be held April 18th, 2019 at the Holiday Inn Express in Chehalis. If you would like more information please call or email marrianne@lewisedc.com