By the age of 24, Lindsay Rucker felt she had capped her growth as a spa therapist at Gene Juarez Salon. But making a life-changing career decision is never easy. As a single mom trying to make ends meet during the recession in 2008, challenging times kept her at the salon for another six years. It wasn’t until a friend introduced Rucker to The N2 Company, a publishing organization aimed to connect community members through hyper-local magazines in different areas across the nation. In 2013, Rucker finally ended her 10-year career at the salon after securing a position as an account executive to get her foot in the door at N2 and to learn the ropes of publishing.
Despite Rucker’s zero background in publishing or advertising sales, she now runs three magazine publications around the Greater Seattle area – Greet West Bellevue, Greet Mill Creek, and Greet Mukilteo – all done under The N2 Company publishing media brand. She also recruited her husband, Shea, into the business. He owns Seattle Real Producers, a real estate agent magazine under the N2 Company umbrella. Rucker states she’s proud to be part of connecting communities through positive human-interest stories, advertising, and the occasional neighborhood social event. Hear more about why she loves her job, her impact at Greet West Bellevue, and Rucker’s outlook on Downtown.
What drives you to be a publisher in the area?
I really love the community focus and featuring local businesses and people that are impactful to the communities in the area. We’re all about amplifying wholesome and positive stories that a typical news sources wouldn’t pick up. We aren’t a news source, we’re more of a social magazine. What drives me to do the job is that this platform allows us to spread kindness, even in the smallest ways.
How many stories have Greet West Bellevue featured?
Greet West Bellevue has approximately 12-15 articles per issue and has been in print since April 2010. We’ve published roughly 150 issues and an estimated 1800 articles over the many years in print. This year in Greet West Bellevue alone, we’ll have published 175-185 articles by the time 2022 is completed.
How does Bellevue stand out from the other two locations you’re working in?
Before working in Bellevue, I was focused on my first magazine in Mukilteo, which is a small, tight knit town and a bedroom community. When I took over the West Bellevue magazine, I expected it to be a bit more pretentious than I was used to. I was wrong and my opinion of the area quickly changed as I got to know the people and businesses here. I found Bellevue to be a highly philanthropic, very humble, and kind community. People here want to help and are always finding ways to reach out to those in need.
I also noticed that in comparison to other areas, Bellevue has a very entrepreneurial mindset, especially with what they teach to their kids. I’m not just talking about the typical lemonade stands. We’ve published several articles about kids starting up some cool businesses here in the community. They take it to the next level by creating a logo, and sometimes even an e-commerce website. It makes me think of the impactful things these kids can do in the future.
Where do you see Downtown Bellevue in 3-5 years?
I can imagine that the skyline will change drastically. People are gravitating towards Bellevue to live and work. There will be a significant evolution in the city’s nightlife, retail, and outdoor spaces. Everything will be at an arm’s reach, but you will still have these great neighborhoods nearby that will continue to give it that close-knit community feel. This is evident in our business. Greet West Bellevue previously served the Medina, Hunts Point, Yarrow Point, and Clyde Hill communities (previously known as Points Living for the last 12 years), but now that the Bellevue area has grown significantly, we’ve been able to expand our distribution to all of the single-family homes in West Bellevue hence, the new name Greet West Bellevue.
Where are your favorite places to dine in Downtown?
I have so many favorites in Downtown Bellevue. I love going to Daniel’s Broiler for its outstanding fine dining service.520 Bar & Grill and Central Restaurant + Bar are both locally owned and serve amazing drinks. For brunch, Central is my favorite. They have the best chicken and waffles!
Do you have a favorite places to shop in Downtown?
I’m a Nordstrom girl all the way. I like everything in one spot, so it’s nice to go there and grab all the things you need on your list. There are also many unique boutiques on Main Street. My personal favorite is Hedge & Vine because they have a collection of beautiful gifts and trinkets. I also love glassybaby, they’re hyperlocal and do some great things in the community.
Are there any hidden gems in Downtown Bellevue you’d like to shout out to?
Third Culture is a great hidden gem. They’re different from your average coffee shop because of their industrial vibes and unique hand-crafted drinks.
I also enjoy going to Civility & Unrest. Being inside the speakeasy-inspired bar is a fun experience, and their cocktails are worth trying. Bar Moore and Rouge Cocktail Lounge are both also great if you’re looking for other stylish spots with great drinks. It’s easy to hop from one to the other. I just love Old Main St. in general. There are so many great spots!
Finally, where do you see Greet West Bellevue in the future?
I like that the magazine is hyperlocal, but I also don’t want to say that we would never expand again. I don’t know what will happen. I’m sure we will reevaluate the boundaries every so often to see what makes sense as the community continues to grow and evolve. Our end goal is to continue positively impacting the areas we serve.
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