The Metropolitan King County Council voted unanimously today to appoint attorney Patty Kuderer to the Washington State House of Representatives, filling the vacancy created by the departure of Ross Hunter earlier this month.
“I am pleased to vote yes to appoint Ms. Kuderer to fill the vacancy in the 48th District,” said King Council Chair Larry Phillips, noting, “She was the top choice by the King County Democrats PCOs, and is an excellent candidate to fill Representative Hunter’s seat representing our Eastside communities.”
The 48th encompasses neighborhoods from Bellevue, Kirkland, and Redmond, as well as the cities of Hunts Point, Yarrow Point, Medina, and Clyde Hill. NPI’s Redmond headquarters are located in the district.
“I am so grateful for the support from the 48th District Democratic organization and honored to be appointed to this seat,” Kuderer said. “I will continue Rep. Hunter’s work championing our public schools while relying on my legal background to work on judiciary issues. I look forward to getting to work in Olympia.”
Kuderer has many years of experience as an attorney. She is currently the President of Kuderer Law Group, PLLC, based in Seattle. Prior to 2012, she was a partner at Hoff, Barry & Kuderer, P.A, based in Eden Prairie, Minnesota, for over eight years. She earned her J.D. from William Mitchell College of Law in St. Paul, Minnesota.
Kuderer will serve out nearly all of the remainder of Hunter’s term. A special election to fill Hunter’s seat will take place concurrently with next year’s presidential election. Kuderer is expected to run for a full term next August and November as well.
Having been sworn in following the Council’s vote, Kuderer is now officially a member of the Washington State House of Representatives, serving alongside Joan McBride. Her appointment brings the House Democratic roster back to fifty-one members. She will now need to hire a legislative assistant (LA), and the caucus will need to figure out what her committee assignments will be.
The Council voted to appoint Kuderer after interviewing her and the other two nominees selected by the Democratic PCOs residing in the 48th District, Kim Allen and Santiago Ramos. Allen, the second choice, had previously made clear that she wished for the Council to respect the first choice of the PCOs and appoint Kuderer, who won an outright majority on the very first round of voting on September 16th.
“The 48th District is fortunate to have two strong, progressive Democratic women interested in filling the vacancy left by Representative Ross Hunter,” Allen said in a news release distributed last Friday. (Full disclosure: Kim serves as a member of NPI’s Advisory Council and is a past member of our board of directors.)
“After many years of representing the Eastside locally and regionally as a strong voice for better transit, environmental stewardship and smart growth, I truly believe I am ready to serve the interests of 48th Legislative District in Olympia,” she said.
“But the voting members of the 48th Democratic Legislative District nominated Patty as their first choice to fill this seat. Appointing Ms. Kuderer best honors the choice of those precinct leaders. I stand ready to share my experience and knowledge of what matters to Eastside communities with her and I urge the members of the County Council to confirm Ms. Kuderer.”
“For now, I will remain a fierce advocate for Redmond and all the Eastside communities as we grapple with the challenges our growth will bring.”
Several councilmembers commented prior to the vote that the nominees chosen by the special nominating caucus and ratified by the King County Democrats were one of the most exemplary set of candidates they had ever seen.
All of us at the Northwest Progressive Institute offer our congratulations to Patty Kuderer on her swearing-in. We look forward to working with her to advance a progressive agenda for our great state in 2016 and beyond.