Kent moved to seventh in 2022 from eighth last year as one of the most ethnically diverse cities in the nation.
To identify the most ethnically diverse places in America, WalletHub compared more than 500 of the largest U.S. cities across three key metrics: ethnoracial diversity, linguistic diversity and birthplace diversity.
Jersey City, New Jersey ranked as the top city followed by three cities in Maryland. Locally, Federal Way ranked 12th and Renton 16th.
Kent had a ethnic diversity score of 68.91.
WalletHub shared an expert’s comment about the main benefits of living in an ethnically diverse city.
“In such an environment, one has regular opportunities to meet and interact with people from a range of racial and ethnic groups and to develop friendships with some of them,” said Jonathan Y. Okamura, professor emeritus, UH Mānoa, Hawaiʻi. “An ethnically diverse city enables one to learn about cultures and traditions different from one’s own and to teach one’s children about appreciating and respecting cultures and people who are different from them.
“Even fleeting interactions with others not from our own racial or ethnic group provide circumstances that can affirm our shared membership in a common society.”
Kent ranked eighth in ethnoracial diversity, which looks at how many people are Hispanic or Latino; white (not Hispanic or Latino); Black or African American (not Hispanic or Latino); Asian (not Hispanic or Latino); and all others (American Indian and Alaska native; native Hawaiian and other Pacific Islander; some other race alone; two or more races) (but not Hispanic or Latino).
Kent ranked 14th in linguistic diversity, which includes the languages of English, Spanish, other Indo-European languages, Asian & Pacific Islander languages and other languages.
Kent ranked 120th in Birthplace Diversity, which looked at in state of residence; Northeast Region; Midwest Region; South Region; West Region; U.S. Territory & abroad (if born to American parent(s); and foreign nation.
1. Jersey City, NJ
2. Germantown, MD
3. Gaithersburg, MD
4. Silver Spring, MD
5. Spring Valley, NV
6. New York, NY
7. Kent, WA
8. San Jose, CA
9. Oakland, CA
10. Rockville, MD
Sources: Data used to create this ranking were obtained from the U.S. Census Bureau.