Three weeks from tomor­row evening, on Fri­day, April 1st, 2016, NPI will be hold­ing its eighth Spring Fundrais­ing Gala at the Mer­cer Island Com­mu­ni­ty & Event Cen­ter. As in years past, we’ve been work­ing hard to put togeth­er a strong speak­ing pro­gram for the event. We’ve pre­vi­ous­ly announced that our keynote speak­er for this year will be U.S. Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Adam Smith, and our mas­ter of cer­e­monies will be Sec­re­tary of State hope­ful Tina Pod­lodows­ki.

U.S. Representative Jim McDermott
U.S. Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Jim McDermott

Tonight, we’re elat­ed to share the news that we will also be joined by U.S. Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Jim McDer­mott, who we’ll be hon­or­ing for a life­time of ser­vice to our state and our coun­try. 2016 is Con­gress­man McDer­mot­t’s final year in office, and we’re glad to have the oppor­tu­ni­ty to thank him in per­son for all of the good works he has done as a mem­ber of Wash­ing­ton State’s con­gres­sion­al delegation.

Rep­re­sen­ta­tive McDer­mott is known for many things, but per­haps he is best known for stand­ing up against the inva­sion of Iraq at a time when most elect­ed lead­ers at the fed­er­al lev­el — includ­ing many Democ­rats — were fool­ish­ly putting their trust in war­mon­gers George W. Bush, Dick Cheney, and Don­ald Rumsfeld.

Rep­re­sen­ta­tive McDer­mott caught a lot of flak in 2002 for for sug­gest­ing that George W. Bush was will­ing to mis­lead Amer­i­ca into war. He mem­o­rably declared:

It would not sur­prise me if they came up with some infor­ma­tion that is not prov­able, and they’ve shift­ed. First they said it was Al Qae­da, then they said it was weapons of mass destruc­tion. Now they’re going back and say­ing it’s Al Qae­da again.

McDer­mott was ridiculed by the right wing at the time, but his assess­ment was prophet­ic. If his col­leagues in the House and Sen­ate had lis­tened to him, there would have been no vote in Con­gress to autho­rize George W. Bush to invade Iraq. Hun­dreds of thou­sands of lives and tril­lions of dol­lars would have been saved.

Aside from coura­geous­ly stand­ing up to neo­con­ser­v­a­tive war schemes, Rep­re­sen­ta­tive McDer­mott has also worked to reform the fos­ter care sys­tem, reduce traf­fick­ing in con­flict min­er­als, and improve Amer­i­cans’ health­care access.

His lega­cy of pub­lic ser­vice goes back even fur­ther than 1988, when he was first elect­ed to Con­gress. In the 1970s, he was elect­ed to the Wash­ing­ton State House of Rep­re­sen­ta­tives (for one term), and lat­er to the Sen­ate (for three terms).

We hope you’ll con­sid­er join­ing us as we hon­or Rep­re­sen­ta­tive McDer­mott at our eighth Spring Fundrais­ing Gala. If you haven’t yet bought your tick­et yet, we urge you to do so now using one of the but­tons below.

A house­hold tick­et admits all the mem­bers of an imme­di­ate fam­i­ly and is a good val­ue if you plan to attend with your spouse or chil­dren. (The gala is a fam­i­ly-friend­ly event, and young peo­ple of all ages are welcome!).

These are our tick­et rates:

  • Indi­vid­ual ($75, admits one person)
  • House­hold ($120, admits an entire family)
  • Liv­ing Light­ly ($25, for stu­dents and activists on lim­it­ed incomes)

Buy a ticket to the gala




Click above to buy a tick­et using a cred­it card.

Here’s what else you can expect at our 2016 Spring Fundrais­ing Gala:

  • A full din­ner buf­fet with veg­e­tar­i­an and veg­an choices
  • Beer and wine selec­tions from our cash bar
  • Oppor­tu­ni­ties to min­gle with fel­low activists and elect­ed leaders
  • A chance to win a scrump­tious dessert for your table at our sec­ond annu­al Dessert Dash, orga­nized by our Host Committee
  • A fam­i­ly-friend­ly atmosphere

If you’d like to RSVP for the gala on Face­book, you can do so here.

Stu­dents who want to vol­un­teer to help put on the event can get in the door free. If you’re inter­est­ed in vol­un­teer­ing, please get in touch with us.

In the weeks to come, we’ll be shar­ing more details about our 2016 gala, includ­ing the names of our oth­er speak­ers. We hope you’ll help us make our biggest event of the year a suc­cess by buy­ing your tick­et and com­mit­ting to attend.

See you on April 1st!

About the author

Andrew Villeneuve is the founder and executive director of the Northwest Progressive Institute, as well as the founder of NPI's sibling, the Northwest Progressive Foundation. He has worked to advance progressive causes for over two decades as a strategist, speaker, author, and organizer. Andrew is also a cybersecurity expert, a veteran facilitator, a delegate to the Washington State Democratic Central Committee, and a member of the Climate Reality Leadership Corps.

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