Current partner and former chairman of Stoel Rives, LLP, registered professional engineer, Mercer Island City Council member from 1997 to 2005 and mayor from 2000 to 2005, Alan Merkle has joined the board of trustees of the French American School of Puget Sound (FASPS), located on Mercer Island since 1999.
Merkle’s affinity for France and the French people stems in part from his 1999 role in forging Mercer Island’s sister city relationship with Thonon les Bains, a town of approximately 35,000 people situated on the south bank of Lake Geneva in France. When approached by FASPS to consider joining its board, Merkle agreed without hesitation.
“I have come to respect and value French culture, French values, and most of all the French people, and I am honored to be invited to join the French American School’s board of trustees.” Merkle said in a press release. “Now more than ever, it’s critically important that we help our children negotiate an increasingly complex and multicultural world, and that is built in to FASPS’s vision.”
Merkle’s law practice is focused primarily on the areas of infrastructure, renewable energy, construction and design, and government contracts, and he regularly serves on dispute review boards and as a mediator and arbitrator, which has made of him a trusted advisor to all those he represents.
“We are honored to have Alan join our board of trustees, and we are excited to benefit from his decades of experience working with public and private organizations, and on multiple complex projects,” FASPS board chair, Laura Mousseau said in a press release. “His love both of Mercer Island and of France, French culture, and the French people ensures his voice will be a perfect addition to our school’s leadership as we continue to fulfill our mission and vision of challenging students to excel academically and thrive in French, American, and international cultures in order to inspire the next generation of global citizens to learn, understand, and act wisely in a multicultural world.”
Merkle, who received the Chevalier de l’Ordre National du Mérite (National Order of Merit) from the French government last September, one of the highest awards given to non-French citizens, began his tenure on the FASPS board of trustees in July and will continue in that role for at least the next three years.