The world lost a truly extraordinary human being on January 2, 2019. The sudden and unexpected passing of Blake Nordstrom after a very short battle with cancer has stunned our community and me personally. Blake was my client for the past 4 years. He hired me to help tell the story of his beloved University of Washington Rowing program. He pushed me to be a better person and a better professional. It feels like I lost a friend, client, mentor, and father figure all in one. Blake touched so many people's lives and I feel grateful for the opportunity to work with such a truly amazing leader.
As we navigate "life after Blake," I keep thinking What Would Blake Do? So I have a new mantra "WWBD?"
Blake would be kind always and treat everyone with respect and dignity.
Blake would expect the highest from himself and others.
Blake would work hard.
Blake would make time for his community.
Blake would show appreciation for big and small things alike.
Blake would be generous with his time and resources.
Blake would have a wide circle of friends from all walks of life.
Blake would pursue his passions (cool cars and old boats!).
Blake would dress impeccably with his shoes always shined!
Blake would smile wide and often! (Maybe that was his secret to happiness.)
Blake would extend himself.
Above all else, Blake would love and honor his family.
One of the traditions of Washington Rowing is to honor a deceased teammate with a seven-man row. You can watch this poignant and touching tribute here.
While I am filled with deep sadness, I am also filled with deep gratitude for knowing such an extraordinary man.
RIP Blake W. Nordstrom. We miss you so much.