Jody Allen

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For the senior editor at the Pew Research Center, see Jodie Allen.
Jody Allen
Born Jo Lynn Allen
Residence Mercer Island, Washington
Other names Jody Patton, Jo Lynn Patton, Jo Allen, Jody Allen Patton, Jo Allen Patton
Alma mater Whitman College (class of 1980)
Occupation Vice-Chair of First & Goal Inc.
President of Vulcan Productions
Spouse(s) Brian Patton (m. 1988–2009)
Children 3

Jo Lynn "Jody" Allen (formerly Jody Patton) is an American businesswoman and philanthropist. She is Microsoft co-founder billionaire Paul Allen's sister and served as the chief executive officer of his investment and project management company, Vulcan Inc., based in Seattle, Washington until October 2015.[1][2] She is also the co-founder and president of the Paul G. Allen Family Foundation.[3]


Early life and education

Allen is the younger[4] sister of Paul G. Allen, co-founder of the Microsoft Corporation.[5] She grew up in Wedgwood, a middle-class neighborhood of Seattle, Washington.[5] Her mother, Edna Faye Allen, was a Seattle school teacher[6] and her father, Kenneth Sam Allen, was an associate director of the University of Washington Libraries.[6] Allen graduated from Lakeside School in 1975[7] and was a member of the class of 1980 at Whitman College in Walla Walla, Washington, where she studied drama.[8][9][10]


In 1986, she co-founded Vulcan Inc. with her brother to manage their family's business and charitable endeavors.[2] Vulcan's former Chief Financial Officer described her as being "responsible for having the trains run on time" and said Allen had "a particular passion for real estate development, building things in general."[11]

She is the Vice-Chair of First & Goal Inc., which oversees operations of the Seattle Seahawks.[2] She was involved in negotiating the public-private partnership that led to the construction of CenturyLink Field in Seattle, and was an adviser to her brother when he first considered buying the Seattle Seahawks.[12][13] In 1997, a Seattle reporter wrote: "Jody Patton thought buying the Seahawks was a great idea; thus was born Allen's efforts to acquire the team and build a new football stadium."[13]

Allen also supervised building the Moda Center in Portland, Oregon, renovating the Seattle Cinerama, and bringing the EMP Museum to Seattle.[8]

Allen is president of Vulcan Productions, a company that produces films, digital programs, and outreach initiatives, and has produced or executive produced more than a dozen documentaries and feature films.[14][15] In 2013, she signed on as a backer of two documentaries, the Richard E. Robbins-directed film Girl Rising and the nuclear power documentary Pandora's Promise.[16][17]

In 2013, her former security guards accused her of sexual harassment and of smuggling giraffe bones out of Botswana after she went on a safari with her brother.[18]


Allen co-founded the Paul G. Allen Family Foundation in 1990.[3] Since then, the Foundation has given more than $469 million in grants to over 1,400 nonprofit organizations.[19]

Allen is the President of the Board of Trustees of the EMP Museum in Seattle, a nonprofit museum dedicated to pop culture and music.[3][20] The Seattle Times credited Allen with helping her brother make EMP a reality: "Although Allen gets most of the is the brainchild of both these close siblings. Allen provided the money and inspiration; Patton, as executive director, is largely responsible for the vision that made it happen."[8]

With her brother, Allen co-founded the Allen Institute for Brain Science in 2003 and currently serves as Chairman of the Board for that Seattle non-profit organization, which provides free online public resources to scientists around the world.[21][22] She serves on the board of the Seahawks Charitable Foundation, and has served on the boards of ArtsFund, the Theatre Communications Group, the University of Washington Foundation, the Museum of Glass, the Los Angeles Film Festival and the Oregon Shakespeare Festival.[3]

Personal life

Allen has three children, including Duncan (born 1989), Gardner (born 1994) and Faye (born 1997) Patton, with Brian Patton, whom she divorced in 2009 after 21 years of marriage.[23][24][8][25] Allen's ex-husband is a golf-course manager.[26][27] She was known as Jody Patton, Jody Allen Patton and Jo Allen Patton while married.[8][28][29]

She is a member of the Royal Canadian Geographical Society[30] and the Explorers Club.[31]

Today, Allen lives on Mercer Island, Washington, outside of Seattle.[11]


Executive producer



  1. The $12 Billion Education Of Paul Allen, BloombergBusinessweek, May 2, 2004
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Vulcan Inc., Leadership
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 The Paul G. Allen Family Foundation, About the Founders
  4. Paul Allen :
  5. 5.0 5.1 William Plummer, Paul Allen: Rich and Reclusive, Microsoft's Other Cofounder Goes Hollywood, People, June 19, 1995
  6. 6.0 6.1 Maureen O'Hagan, Faye Allen, mother of Microsoft co-founder, dies at 90, The Seattle Times, June 3, 2012
  7. The Accidental Zillionaire: Demystifying Paul Allen - Laura Rich - Google Books
  8. 8.0 8.1 8.2 8.3 8.4 Melanie McFarland and Patrick MacDonald, The EMP has been 'long, major journey', The Seattle Times, June 23, 2000
  9. The Accidental Zillionaire: Demystifying Paul Allen - Laura Rich - Google Books
  10. Allen Foundation grants Whitman College $150K for HJT - Whitman College
  11. 11.0 11.1 Mike Rogoway, Trail Blazers, Vulcan look ahead as Paul Allen faces cancer, The Oregonian, November 21, 2009
  12. Brier Dudley, Seahawks Sign Lease For 30 Years At New Stadium, The Seattle Times, September 25, 1998
  13. 13.0 13.1 Linda Keene, The Enigmatic Paul Allen -- Everyone Knows What He Does, But Few Really Know Who He Is, The Seattle Times, June 11, 1997
  14. 14.00 14.01 14.02 14.03 14.04 14.05 14.06 14.07 14.08 14.09 14.10 14.11 14.12 14.13 14.14 14.15 imdb
  15. Vulcan Productions, About
  16. 16.0 16.1 Rebecca Ford, 'Girl Rising' Picked Up by Regal Cinemas for Weeklong Engagement, The Hollywood Reporter, April 5, 2013
  17. Kerry A. Dolan, Why Billionaire Paul Allen Backed Pro-Nuclear Power Film Pandora's Promise, Forbes, June 14, 2013
  18. Levi Pulkkinen, Bodyguards: Vulcan CEO Allen tried to smuggle bones out of Africa, Seattle Post-Intelligencer, February 28, 2013
  19. The Paul G. Allen Family Foundation’s New $6.87M Grant Cycle Lends Strong Support to Scientific Research, Paul G. Allen Family Foundation, August 5, 2013
  20. EMP Museum
  21. Allen Institute for Brain Science, Founders
  22. Allen Institute for Brain Science, Public Resources
  23. Jody and Paul Allen’s Win Streak by Rick Anderson, Seattle Weekly, December 10, 2013
  24. Paul Allen :
  25. The Accidental Zillionaire: Demystifying Paul Allen - Laura Rich - Google Books
  26. The Accidental Zillionaire: Demystifying Paul Allen - Laura Rich - Google Books
  27. Druids Glen Opens With Rave Reviews by Craig Smith, The Seattle Times, July 25, 1997
  28. Foundation gives grants to Oregon programs, Portland Business Journal, January 15, 2009
  29. The Accidental Zillionaire by Paulina Borsook, Wired Magazine, February 2008
  30. The Royal Canadian Geographical Society, 2012 College of Fellows Dinner
  32. 32.00 32.01 32.02 32.03 32.04 32.05 32.06 32.07 32.08 32.09 32.10 32.11 32.12 32.13 32.14 Yahoo! Movies
  33. 33.0 33.1 33.2 33.3 33.4 33.5 33.6 33.7 33.8 The New York Times
  34. Vulcan Productions, Girl Rising