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Washington State Fair has a new CEO

News Release

Washington State Fair110 9th Avenue SW Puyallup, WA

Washington State Fair has a new CEO... Well, after Kent leaves.

The Washington State Fair Board of Directors is pleased to announce Renee McClain as the new chief executive officer for the Washington State Fair, effective October 1, 2022. She is replacing longtime CEO Kent Hojem, who will retire from the Fair later this year.

McClain is a highly experienced, successful and well-regarded business leader in Pierce County. She recently served as the Chair of the Puyallup-Sumner Chamber of Commerce and has worked for the Washington State Fair for the past 26 years as the Chief Financial Officer.

“Renee has demonstrated her leadership capabilities in many ways over her career and most recently in guiding the Washington State Fair through the pandemic, working closely with other Fair leaders and employees in creating a tactical plan to enhance visitor experience at all Fair events and activities,” said Washington State Fair Board of Directors’ President Jeff Hogan. “The combination of Renee’s experience, leadership style, and drive makes her an ideal fit for the Washington State Fair for our next stages of growth.”

As CEO, McClain will oversee all operations of the Fair and Fair properties. Those operations include the Washington State Fair, the Washington State Spring Fair, The Taste Northwest, Oktoberfest NW, Holiday Magic, as well as all interim rental activities that occur at the Washington State Fair Events Center throughout the year.

“I’m honored to be selected as the Fair’s next CEO,” McClain said. “I have a deep respect for the Fair’s 122-year-old history and am excited to build on that foundation. I am passionate about our guests’ experiences and ensuring our facilities are first class.”

McClain was born in Tacoma and raised in Sedro Woolley, WA. She attended Central Washington University where she earned a Bachelor’s degree in Accounting. She started her career in Tacoma as a CPA in public accounting, then became corporate controller of a $75 million forest products company in Seattle before beginning her career at the Fair. She and her husband Andre reside in Puyallup and have four adult children.

The Washington State Fair is one of the biggest fairs in the world, and the largest in the Pacific Northwest. It started in 1900 in Puyallup and welcomes more than a million guests to the single largest attended event in the state. Star-studded entertainment, the Puyallup Rodeo, rides, exhibits, food, flowers and animals are mainstays of the 20-day event that kicks off the Friday of Labor Day weekend. For more information about the Sept. 2-25 2022 Washington State Fair (closed Tuesdays and Sept. 7), visit

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2022 Fair dates

WSFA Presentation to Legislature

October 4, 2019 8:00AM
Take some time to view the presentation...
Legislative Committee on Economic Development & International Relations
"Fairs, Washingtons Largest Classroom -- Opportunities for Growth and Education in Rural Communities" with Tamara Hayes (SW WA Fair), Lori Lancaster (Benton Franklin Fair & Rodeo), Anne Moneymaker (Central WA Fair), & Bill Ogg (Walla Walla Fair & Frontier Days).
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