Kathleen Drew, former Issaquah legislator, receives Democrats’ endorsement for secretary of state
June 3, 2012
By Warren Kagarise
NEW — 12:30 p.m. June 3, 2012
Kathleen Drew, a onetime Issaquah state senator and a former aide to Gov. Chris Gregoire, received state Democrats’ endorsement in the race to succeed Secretary of State Sam Reed.
Drew received the nod at the state party convention June 2 after outpolling former Seattle Mayor Greg Nickels and Puyallup state Sen. Jim Kastama among party activists. Though the candidates all appear on the August primary ballot, only Drew earned the party’s nod.
The secretary of state serves as the top elections official in Washington. The office also handles registrations for corporations and charities.
The incumbent secretary of state, Reed, is a Republican and plans to retire.
Drew served as a representative for Issaquah and other Eastside communities in the mid-1990s.
In the Legislature, she crafted a tough ethics law for public employees — a national model designed to tamp down on conflicts of interest in state government — and led the effort to protect the Issaquah Salmon Hatchery from budget cuts.
Drew later served in Gregoire’s administration, initially as a policy adviser focused on the environment and then on general government issues. In the environmental role, she crafted the legislation to establish the Puget Sound Partnership, a regional effort to clean up Puget Sound.
Drew left Gregoire’s office in October to serve as a policy adviser at the state Department of Enterprise Services — a super-agency responsible for handling payroll and personnel, as well as managing contracts, real estate and supplies.
In the secretary of state race, Republicans closed ranks behind Thurston County Auditor Kim Wyman.
Voters pick the top two candidates, regardless of party affiliation, Aug. 7 in the all-mail primary election. The top vote recipients then advance to an all-mail general election Nov. 6.