Tab Wilkins, the president and center director of manufacturing-services organization Impact Washington, has died after a tragic accident.
Wilkins was skiing in the Blackcomb backcountry in Canada when he fell, according to a blog about the tragedy on the website of The Mountaineers club, where Wilkins was a longtime member. Wilkins was wearing proper safety equipment at the time, but he did not survive.
Loren Lyon, who preceded Wilkins as president and center director of Impact Washington, says Wilkins was “thoughtful, intelligent and intellectual, with a very calm, leadership-oriented demeanor.”
Lyon recalls Wilkins encouraging him to take the job at Impact Washington in 2015. When Lyons announced his retirement last year, Wilkins called him to ask if he’d be a good fit as Lyons’ replacement.
“His view of how to make Impact Washington even more impactful will be carried on by the team,” says Lyon, who knew Wilkins for about 10 years and often used him as a sounding board. “It’s just stunning. I don’t know what to say.”
Wilkins was a former board president and 19-year member of the Mountaineers, an alpine club in Washington founded in 1906 that is focused on outdoor recreation, education and conservation.
In addition to being an avid outdoors enthusiast, Wilkins was a leader in the nonprofit world for decades as well, serving previously as regional manager of the National Institute of Standards and Technology, where he provided coaching and support services to a national network of 51 nonprofit consulting groups focused on growing U.S. manufacturing. He joined Impact Washington this past November.
Impact Washington supports the Washington manufacturing community and offers a range of consulting services designed to enhance the productivity and technology performance of the state’s manufacturers. Wilkins also was a judge for the Seattle Business magazine’s upcoming 2019 Washington Manufacturing Awards.
He is survived by his wife, Anita, whom he met through The Mountaineers, according to the club’s blog. They married in 2016.