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Seattle City (spot)Light: Patrick Sweeney

This December marks Patrick Sweeney’s five-year anniversary at City Light. A division administrator in Human Resources (HR), Patrick manages a variety of areas within the division. “I like to say my focus is the warm and fuzzy side of HR,” Patrick explained. “My work covers the performance side of Cornerstone, the employee engagement survey, talent, the apprenticeship program and workforce development, among other tasks.”

Originally from the south shore of Kauai, Patrick studied marketing and economics at the University of Idaho and moved to Seattle after graduation. He lives in Lynnwood with his wife Jessica, their three-year-old son Jameson and their bulldog Doolin. In this week’s (spot)Light, Patrick shares his hobbies and talks about his role at the utility.

Patrick and his family

“I’m a pretty massive Seahawks fan which consumes a lot. I also participate in triathlons. I do ChelanMan every year. I started that on a whim thanks to my wife. She runs half marathons and, about six years ago, she was going to run in ChelanMan. I wanted to compete in something, but I hate running. I’m a swimmer so decided to try triathlons and have stuck to it. I also have a couple buddies that I go backpacking with a couple times a year, whether it’s somewhere along the coast or up in the mountains. Some of the best places we’ve been to are Yellow Banks and Lake Anne. We’ve tried to win the Enchantments lottery the past four years, but no such luck! That’s our big goal. To get to the Enchantments. ”

“I got into this field randomly. I was in sales and management for most of my career. I was a little bored in my last job, so I applied for a recruiting position here at City Light. I did that for six months, but then the division administrator position opened.  It was new, very undefined and was able to be shaped by whomever occupied that role which was very appealing to me. I had never worked in HR prior to this and have enjoyed it.”

“I learn a lot from both my boss and the managers in our group. My professional growth is constant. There’s a wealth of knowledge which results in new skills and insights that I learn daily. The other cool thing about my role is that I get to interact with so many people across the utility. I love being at our service centers and working with our employees to see if there is anything I can do to make their job a little easier. There’s an awesome sense of pride here at City Light. Yes, we are all part of the City of Seattle, but there’s a very distinct feeling of being part of City Light. You’re not just a City employee, but a City Light employee. That feeds into some of my energy. I like the fact that we run the dams, the lines–it’s all ours and has been for over 100 years. It’s a neat time to be part of this historic organization, but at the same time, it’s also changing to adapt to current and future conditions. And I like being a part of a group that’s helping to implement that change.”