This article can also be found in the June 2018 issue of Mercer Island Living Magazine.
Mercer Island resident Todd Humphrey was born and raised outside of Toronto, and like any good Canadian, he was an avid hockey player, competing at both the college level and professionally. He relocated to Mercer Island in 2000 and has happily resided there ever since. He lives with his girlfriend Melanie and two daughters Evan and Claire.
“I think I skated before I could walk,” Todd said about getting his start on the ice at a very young age. He learned to play hockey at age four and completely fell in love with the sport.
“Hockey is such a part of the life blood of Canada,” he said. Todd spent most of his weekends and free time playing hockey. “Pretty much all I wanted to do growing up was play hockey,” he said.
That passion and dedication ended up paying off for Todd, who went on to play hockey at Western University in London, Ontario. After college, he played four years of professional hockey – one year with the Detroit Falcons and three years with the Generals in Flint, Michigan.
“It was fulfilling my childhood dream,” said Todd about going pro. “I couldn’t believe I was getting paid to play this game that I love so much.”
Playing hockey taught Todd a lot about dedication and achieving goals – characteristics he passed onto his daughters. At just 14 and 15 years old respectively, Evan and Claire are both already incredibly accomplished young women. The girls are both dedicated rowers at the Mount Baker Rowing and Sailing Center, practicing between five and six days per week. Claire hopes to one day compete for a college rowing program.
The girls are also heavily involved with the Island Friends Guild, which raises money for the Psychiatry and Behavioral Medicine Unit at Seattle Children’s. The unit works to diagnose, treat and prevent emotional and behavioral problems in children.
Currently there are about 15 members in the Guild. They meet monthly and put on two to three big events per year. The Guild has raised a staggering $20,000 since its inception in 2015.
Evan serves as the treasurer for the Guild and Claire is the president and a founding member.
“They’re really good kids,” said Todd, but that goes without saying. The girls have also done their fair share of travelling – they’ve been to Southeast Asia, Jamaica, the Bahamas, Singapore and more. In 2017, the girls travelled to Costa Rica with their best friends, who are also sisters.
“They’ve formed a lot of friendships all over the world,” said Todd.
Todd isn’t playing hockey professionally anymore, but he’s confident that the sport helped him in his professional life today. He serves as the CEO of the Seattle-based company LiquidPlanner, an online project management software company.
“I’ve done startups my entire career,” he said. “Startups are like playing a sport. You’re competing on a daily basis and your team has to come together.” For these reasons, he’s always felt right at home in the world of startups. “This is where I was supposed to be,” he said.
At the end of the day, Todd loves being a dad to Claire and Evan, and he loves how family-centric Mercer Island is. “It’s really a family-first environment,” he said. “The schools here are extraordinary and the kids are all very supportive of one another.”
Have Claire and Evan developed any interest in playing hockey? Todd says he taught them to skate at a young age, but they’re rowers first and foremost. “I think Evan would be the better hockey player because she’s got a mean streak,” he laughed.
The most rewarding part of being a father for Todd has been watching his daughters grow up and evolve into community-minded, thoughtful people in a place as incredible as Mercer Island. Although there will always be the inevitable challenges that come with parenting, he remarked, “I’ve got really amazing kids and I’m thankful for that.”