Board Member Perspective: Carl and Renee Behnke

“It’s always been about community for me,”

says long-time Board member Carl Behnke when asked about his persistent support of the vision that will become Tateuchi Center. “I understand how venues are vehicles for memory creation, where families and friends share joys and insights, connecting with each other and their neighbors.”

Carl and Renee Behnke have been involved with Tateuchi Center from when it was an un-named, generalized vision. He joined the Board of Directors in 2003 and has been an active member ever since, currently serving as Vice Chair. Renee joined the Advisory Council in 2015. Together, the couple has pledged over $3 million toward building a stronger community around the arts by donating to Tateuchi Center’s Capital Campaign. Having grown up in Bellevue, Carl notes that, “our family has always been involved deeply in the community, it’s just natural that I would continue this.”

Carl and Renee are well-regarded business leaders and incredibly generous philanthropists. Currently, Carl is the president of R.E.B. Enterprises and Chairman of Skinner Corporation. Renee is the president emeritus of Sur La Table, a company that flourished under her direction after she took the reins in 1995. The couple has given extensively to causes such as Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, Pacific Northwest Ballet, University of Puget Sound, and took on active roles in PONCHO during its existence.

When not championing a number of philanthropic causes, Renee and Carl are avid art collectors and gardeners. Renee is a gifted chef, drawing inspiration from her many years traveling and collecting recipes from around the world. The couple enjoys entertaining in their Clyde Hill home, hosting large Sunday dinners for family and friends. Their lives reflect that they truly are all about community