Marie Gluesenkamp Perez speaking at a house party
Marie Gluesenkamp Perez speaking at a house party (Photo: Andrew Villeneuve/NPI)

Wash­ing­ton State will soon have a new mem­ber of Con­gress: Marie Glue­senkamp Perez, who at thir­ty-four will be one of Con­gress’ youngest members.

Hav­ing pre­vailed over ultra MAGA Repub­li­can Joe Kent in the con­test for U.S. Rep­re­sen­ta­tive in Wash­ing­ton’s 3rd, just as NPI’s research showed she could, Glue­senkamp Perez is now get­ting ready to take office on Jan­u­ary 3rd.

She will join a con­gres­sion­al del­e­ga­tion that includes Pat­ty Mur­ray, Maria Cantwell, Suzan Del­Bene, Rick Larsen, Dan New­house, Cathy McMor­ris Rodgers, Derek Kilmer, Prami­la Jaya­pal, Kim Schri­er, Adam Smith, and Mar­i­lyn Strick­land. (With the excep­tion of Sen­a­tor Cantwell, all of them were just reelect­ed to new terms.)

Democ­rats last won the 3rd in 2008 when Bri­an Baird sought a final term. Jaime Her­rera Beut­ler suc­ceed­ed Baird in ear­ly 2011 after Repub­li­cans cap­tured the dis­trict in the 2010 midterms. Her­rera Beut­ler won sev­er­al con­sec­u­tive reelec­tions before los­ing to Kent and Glue­senkamp Perez last August. Her vote to impeach Don­ald Trump had made her per­sona non gra­ta with the Repub­li­can base.

Ken­t’s can­di­da­cy prompt­ed Glue­senkamp Perez to jump into the race last Feb­ru­ary; the Demo­c­ra­t­ic Par­ty wast­ed lit­tle time in unit­ing behind her, with anoth­er Demo­c­rat even with­draw­ing his can­di­da­cy in the inter­est of uni­ty. Glue­senkamp Perez pre­vailed in the August 2022 Top Two elec­tion against a frac­tured Repub­li­can field and then defeat­ed Kent in the gen­er­al elec­tion by few­er than three thou­sand votes in what has become a solid­ly Repub­li­can district.

Now that the cam­paign is won, Glue­senkamp Perez is prepar­ing to gov­ern. Her team announced today that she has decid­ed on her key staff hires and will be open­ing an office in Van­cou­ver very close to Her­rera Beut­ler’s cur­rent office.

“I ran for Con­gress to get things done for work­ing fam­i­lies like mine across the Third Dis­trict, and I’ve brought togeth­er an expe­ri­enced, bipar­ti­san team that is ready to hit the ground run­ning on day one,” said Rep­re­sen­ta­tive-elect Glue­senkamp Perez. “I’m delight­ed that two mem­bers of Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Jaime Her­rera Beutler’s staff will be join­ing our dis­trict office, and I can’t wait to start work­ing with my new team to get the job done for South­west Washington.”

Here’s an overview of the team, cour­tesy of the Rep­re­sen­ta­tive-elec­t’s office:


Chief of Staff Jes­si­ca Killin will lead both the Wash­ing­ton, D.C. and Dis­trict teams. She is a U.S. Army vet­er­an who has over 20 years of expe­ri­ence work­ing in and with Con­gress. She pre­vi­ous­ly served as chief of staff to sev­er­al mem­bers of the House of Rep­re­sen­ta­tives and in the offices of Sen­a­tor Tom Carp­er (D‑DE) and for­mer Sen­a­tor Bill Nel­son (D‑FL).

Senior Advi­sor Phil Gard­ner will pro­vide coun­sel to the Rep.-elect. Phil has worked in Wash­ing­ton state pol­i­tics for over 15 years, most recent­ly as Rep.-elect Glue­senkamp Perez’s cam­paign man­ag­er, and served as a long­time aide to Lieu­tenant Gov­er­nor Den­ny Heck.

Leg­isla­tive Direc­tor Emi­ly Kolano will lead the Rep.-elect’s leg­isla­tive team and dri­ve leg­isla­tive pri­or­i­ties. Pre­vi­ous­ly, she served as leg­isla­tive direc­tor for Rep. Jason Crow (CO-06) and spent years work­ing in the Wash­ing­ton del­e­ga­tion on the teams of for­mer Rep. Den­ny Heck (WA-10) and Rep. Derek Kilmer (WA-06).

Com­mu­ni­ca­tions Direc­tor Han­nah Crook will be the spokesper­son for the Rep.-elect and man­age the com­mu­ni­ca­tions depart­ment. She most recent­ly was a spokesper­son for Rep. Cindy Axne (IA-03) on both her offi­cial and polit­i­cal teams and spent the ear­ly years of her career work­ing in Mary­land politics.

Direc­tor of Oper­a­tions Zev Moses will man­age all sched­ul­ing and D.C. office oper­a­tions. He pre­vi­ous­ly served as direc­tor of sched­ul­ing and oper­a­tions for Rep. Cindy Axne (IA-03) and worked in inter­na­tion­al rela­tions and gov­ern­ment affairs for five years pri­or to enter­ing pub­lic service.

Leg­isla­tive Cor­re­spon­dent Vale­ria Met­z­gen will help man­age con­stituent com­mu­ni­ca­tions. She recent­ly worked as a staff assis­tant in the Wash­ing­ton, D.C. office of Rep. Raul Ruiz (CA-36) and as an intern for the Con­gres­sion­al His­pan­ic Cau­cus Insti­tute. Vale­ria is a DACA recip­i­ent and will use her expe­ri­ences to advo­cate on behalf of South­west Washington’s immi­grant communities.

Staff Assis­tant Kendall Smith will pro­vide admin­is­tra­tive sup­port while han­dling tour requests, flag requests, and the office’s intern­ship pro­gram. She is a Wash­ing­ton state native and is the for­mer oper­a­tions man­ag­er for Sen­a­tor Pat­ty Murray’s re-elec­tion campaign.


Dis­trict Direc­tor Sarah Kohout will over­see all oper­a­tions in the Dis­trict Office to ensure Third Dis­trict res­i­dents and orga­ni­za­tions receive top-notch con­stituent ser­vices. Sarah is a famil­iar face in South­west Wash­ing­ton, hav­ing served as Sen­a­tor Maria Cantwell’s out­reach direc­tor for the region.

Deputy Dis­trict Direc­tor Tim Gowen will assist in man­ag­ing the case­work team and dis­trict out­reach. Tim will bring his knowl­edge and expe­ri­ence as a small busi­ness own­er to man­age ser­vices and advo­cate for the needs of constituents.

Case­work­er Tony Sprauge has spent the last year serv­ing Washington’s Third Dis­trict res­i­dents in the office of out­go­ing Repub­li­can Rep. Jaime Her­rera Beut­ler (WA-03) as staff assis­tant, and will con­tin­ue this crit­i­cal work in the Rep.-elect’s office.

Case­work­er Gwen Palin, who also served on the staff of out­go­ing Repub­li­can Rep. Jaime Her­rera Beut­ler (WA-03), will con­tin­ue work­ing to pro­vide time­ly con­stituent ser­vices to Washington’s Third Dis­trict residents.

Dis­trict Aide Peter San­difer will pro­vide admin­is­tra­tive sup­port for the case­work team. He most recent­ly worked on the Rep.-elect’s cam­paign for Congress.


The Wash­ing­ton, D.C. Office will be locat­ed at 1431 Long­worth House Office Build­ing, Wash­ing­ton, D.C. 20515.

The Dis­trict Office will be locat­ed at 1053 Offi­cers Row, Van­cou­ver, WA 98661, just steps away from out­go­ing Rep. Jaime Her­rera Beutler’s Van­cou­ver Office.

Two of the key hires are com­ing over from Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Cindy Axne’s office. Axne, an Iowa Demo­c­rat, is leav­ing Con­gress after los­ing reelec­tion to Repub­li­can Zach Nunn. Axne came close to hold­ing on, gar­ner­ing 49.6% of the vote, but ulti­mate­ly could not pre­vail. Iowa will not be send­ing any Democ­rats to the 118th Con­gress for the first time in decades. The state is also set to lose its key posi­tion atop the Demo­c­ra­t­ic Par­ty’s nom­i­nat­ing cal­en­dar for the 2024 cycle.

NPI con­grat­u­lates Rep­re­sen­ta­tive-elect Glue­senkamp Perez on this impor­tant mile­stone and we look for­ward to her swear­ing in next month.

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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