John W. Stanton
Stanton (third from right) in 2009
Alma materWhitman College (B.A.)
Harvard Business School (M.B.A.)
SpouseTheresa Gillespie

John W. Stanton is an American businessman. He is the chairman of the board of Trilogy International Partners, as well as the majority owner of the Seattle Mariners of Major League Baseball (MLB).[1][2]

Early life and education

Stanton was born in 1955.[3][4] A lifelong resident of the Seattle area,[5] John Stanton went to Newport High School in Bellevue, Washington.[3] He earned his undergraduate degree in Whitman College in Walla Walla, Washington.[6][7] He earned an MBA from Harvard Business School.[3]


Founding wireless companies

Stanton was the founder and former CEO of Western Wireless Corporation, former chairman and CEO of VoiceStream Wireless, and former chairman of the CTIA.[8][6]

He became the first employee of McCaw Cellular Communications in the early 1980s.[9] He was COO and vice chairman of McCaw Cellular in the 1980s.[3]

After he left McCaw he founded the company that became Western Wireless Corp in 1992.[9] From 1992 to 2005, he was at Western Wireless Corp. as CEO and chairman.[3] He was the founder of Voicestream Wireless Corp.[9] Between 1995 and 2003, VoiceStream Wireless had him as chairman and CEO as well, with that company renamed T-Mobile USA after an acquisition.[3] From 2008 until 2013 he was director and then chairman of Clearwire Corp.[3]

Trilogy International

In 2005, he, Strive Masiyiwa, Bradley Horwitz, and others formed Trilogy International Partners.[10][11][12] At the start, Stanton had a $295 million equity stake in Trilogy.[11] In 2006, his net worth was $1 billion.[13] Stanton was listed as #840 in the Forbes 2007 "Richest People" study. His net worth was estimated at US$1.1 billion.[6]

By 2014, he had held executive roles at McCaw Cellular, Western Wireless and VoiceStream Wireless. He had also previously been chairman of Clearwire.[3]

Stanton joined Microsoft's board of directors in July 2014.[3][14][15] He joined the Compensation Committee of the board.[3] He was also a director at Columbia Sportswear.[3]

Around 2016, he joined the board of Costco.[9] As of August 2016, Stanton was reported to own approximately US$45 million of stock holdings in Columbia Sportswear, General Communication Inc. and other companies.[16]

He is a past chairman of the board of trustees of Whitman College.[6][7] In 2018, Whitman College elected to name a newly constructed residence hall after Stanton, who had graduated in 1977.[17]

He is still a member of Trilogy International Partners with Theresa Gillespie and Brad Horwitz. It trades on the Toronto Stock Exchange.[1] He is also chairman of Trilogy Equity and co-founder of Trilogy Search Partners.[18]

Seattle Mariners

As one of 17 minority owners in the team,[5] in April 2016, Stanton was appointed as the new CEO of the Seattle Mariners organization after Nintendo sold its majority stake for $661 million.[5][19] Major League Baseball formally approved the sale of the Mariners to Stanton in August of that year.[20] Stanton took over as control person from retiring chairman Howard Lincoln.[20] Stanton became responsible for the Seattle Mariners day-to-day operations.[21] In 2019, the team had few wins, with Stanton arguing the success metric to look at was player success at that time.[22] In 2023, under Stanton's ownership, the Mariners were ranked 29th out of 30 teams in off-season spending after leading the league in operating income the previous year.[23][24] The Mariners then failed to reach the 2023 playoffs by one game with players such as Cal Raleigh, J. P. Crawford, and Logan Gilbert criticizing the lack of spending by the team.[25] Following the 2023 season, the Mariners decided to not invest in significant improvements to the team, instead focusing on shedding payroll to control costs, resulting in frustration and anger among many portions of the fanbase and the players for being more interested in revenues than fielding a competitive team.[26][27]


In 2014, he had chaired or co-chaired the Business Partnership for Early Learning, the United Way of King County campaign, the Washington Roundtable, and the Regional Transportation Commission.[3]

Personal life

He resides in Bellevue, Washington[7] with his wife Theresa Gillespie. They have two sons.[3]


  1. ^ a b [1], company website; accessed April 27, 2016.
  2. ^ "Profile". Yahoo. Retrieved September 22, 2014.
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m Cook, John (July 30, 2014). "Wireless pioneer John Stanton named to Microsoft board in latest bid by software giant to gain ground in mobile". Geekwire. Retrieved December 5, 2020.
  4. ^ Soper, Taylor (July 20, 2020). "Mariners owner and wireless industry vet John Stanton on T-Mobile/Sprint, future of retail, more". Geekwire.
  5. ^ a b c Johns, Greg (April 27, 2016). "Nintendo selling Mariners to minority owners". Seattle Mariners. Archived from the original on April 23, 2017. Retrieved June 16, 2016.
  6. ^ a b c d "The World's Billionaires — John Stanton". Forbes. March 8, 2007. Retrieved 2012-02-27.
  7. ^ a b c "Trustees". Whitman College. Retrieved 2015-09-21.
  8. ^ "Western Wireless Corporate Officers". Archived from the original on March 6, 2005.
  9. ^ a b c d Stewart, Ashley (April 27, 2016). "New Mariners CEO John Stanton is a 'shrewd and tough negotiator' who loves Seattle". Puget Sound Business Journal.
  10. ^ "Strive Masiyiwa Zimbabwe Businessman". Zimbabwe Today. April 23, 2017. Retrieved September 17, 2018.
  11. ^ a b Willis, Andrew (November 1, 2016). "Telecom company Trilogy coming to Canada in Alignvest deal". The Globe and Mail. Retrieved September 17, 2018.
  12. ^ "Bradley Jay Horwitz". Bloomberg. Retrieved September 17, 2018.
  13. ^ "#746 John Stanton". Forbes.[dead link]
  14. ^ Profile,; accessed September 22, 2014.
  15. ^ Profile; accessed September 22, 2014.
  16. ^ "JOHN W STANTON Insider Trading Overview". Retrieved 2016-08-11.
  17. ^ "New Whitman College residence hall named for Seattle Mariners' Chair John Stanton '77". Whitman College. May 9, 2018. Retrieved December 6, 2020.
  18. ^ "John Stanton". Trilogy Equity.
  19. ^ Baker, Geoff (April 27, 2016). "CEO Howard Lincoln leaving Mariners with 'a few regrets'". The Seattle Times. Retrieved June 16, 2016.
  20. ^ a b "MLB approves sale of Seattle Mariners, Stanton to take over". USA Today. August 18, 2016. Retrieved December 5, 2020.
  21. ^ Soper, Taylor (April 27, 2016). "Meet John Stanton: What you need to know about the new Mariners CEO". Geekwire. Retrieved December 5, 2020.
  22. ^ Divish, Ryan (June 25, 2019). "Mariners owner John Stanton's view on the team's 'step-back' plan: Optimistic yet frustrated". The Seattle Times. Retrieved December 6, 2020.
  23. ^ "MLB 2023 Offseason Spending". Spotrac. Retrieved October 1, 2023.
  24. ^ Didion, Alex (March 23, 2023). "Forbes: Mariners were MLB's most profitable team in 2022 season 5". King 5. Retrieved October 1, 2023.
  25. ^ "Too-early end to season has Raleigh, Mariners wanting more. He is the cheapest owner in sports despite being a very profitable baseball club. Fans have changed their famous Refuse to Lose logo to Refuse to Spend based on their frugal ways despite being a lucrative franchise". Retrieved 2023-10-01.
  26. ^ "Mariners manager Scott Servais hopeful trades give team 'some flexibility' to add to lineup". The Seattle Times. 2023-12-04. Retrieved 2023-12-06.
  27. ^ Farkas, Brady (2023-12-08). "Now, the Seattle Mariners Players are Showing Frustration with Organization". Fastball. Retrieved 2023-12-08.