Sister City & Friendship City Program

Sister City Signing Damyang Korea

The City of Lynnwood Sister City Program builds relationships, educational opportunities, international trade, tourism and art, and cultural awareness between the people of Lynnwood and international cities through international visits, exchange programs, humanitarian acts, and community events – leading to lifelong understanding and friendships around the world. 

A sister city is a long-term relationship between two communities in two countries. A relationship is officially recognized after the highest elected or appointed official from both communities sign off on an agreement to become sister cities. It was President Dwight Eisenhower who created the concept of sister cities in 1956, via the Sister Cities International organization, to promote citizen diplomacy. By forming relationships, Eisenhower believed that people of different cultures could understand, celebrate and appreciate their differences and build partnerships that would lessen the chance of future world conflicts. The City of Lynnwood Sister City Program is a member of the Sister Cities International.

Mayor Nicola Smith and the Lynnwood City Council passed Resolution 2015-10 to establish a Lynnwood Sister City Program in May 2015.

The City of Lynnwood administers the overall management of the Sister City Program, working with a program committee. The Sister City program committee provides guidance and support for new and ongoing relationships, project development and implementation, including program sustainability. The City of Lynnwood also partners with the Lynnwood Sister Cities Association, an independent, non-profit organization to complement and further Sister City Program opportunities with community members, civic organizations and local businesses. 


A Sister City relationship to an international city begins with Lynnwood residents, businesses and business owners, upon request. Starting a Sister City is hard work with unique challenges and rewarding opportunities – and should be embraced and sustained by the community – with time, compassion and commitment. The Sister City Program also welcomes and embraces international projects and/or events that lead to lifelong understanding and friendships around the world.