Press Editorial

October 16, 2012

By Staff

John Urquhart for sheriff

King County voters last experienced a contested race for sheriff in 2005.

The race on the ballot next month, between appointed Sheriff Steve Strachan and John Urquhart, a former King County Sheriff’s Office sergeant, offers voters a choice between a pair of capable candidates.

Former Sheriff Sue Rahr stepped down in March, and the King County Council appointed Strachan for the interim. The election is to fill the remainder of Rahr’s term through December 2013.

The sheriff’s office is mired in problems with personnel, policies and procedures — all brought to light in recent audits. The next sheriff has a paramount duty to correct the issues and restore public confidence in the agency.

Both candidates served as insiders in the department — Strachan as Rahr’s chief deputy, Urquhart as spokesman and a beat cop — and yet both claim to bear the mantel of change. Neither candidate is ideal, but both offer a deep respect for the agency and its mission to protect and serve the public.

Urquhart lacks managerial experience at a large public agency, so his decision, if elected, to bring Anne Kirkpatrick — a reform-minded former police chief of Spokane, Federal Way and Ellensburg — on board in the sheriff’s office No. 2 slot is heartening.

Urquhart also possesses the skills to communicate the agency’s mission and priorities to elected leaders in Seattle and Olympia, deputies in the field and, most importantly, to the public.

Vote Urquhart for sheriff.

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3 Responses to “Press Editorial”

  1. Dan Hall on October 18th, 2012 9:10 am

    If this were any more superficial it would be laughable. You are comparing a proven leader to a guy with communication skills and an ex-chief of police who was run out of town? Wow…do some research…

    So to your readers:
    Urquhart was in a leadership position for only 14 months in his police career, which resulted in a sustained charge of not meeting performance standards as a supervisor and a transfer out of any leadership role.

    Kirkpatrick: So far cost the taxpayers in Spokane over $2M in settlements for police officers she unlawfully terminated. She received the only no-confidence vote of the Spokane Police Guild and I am told the Federal Way Police Guild was on the verge of voting no-confidence before she left to go to Spokane.

    Both are known to “make examples” of behavior in a way that will provide the most humiliation.

    If Kirkpatrick didn’t scare you then maybe John’s comment about standing on Dow’s desk and asking for more money might…Money that must be redirected from other essential services or as an increase in the tax base. Your money.

    I am very surprised that you did not do your homework on these two and you think that running a large agency of $160 and 1000 employees can be effectively run by two ego-centered “leaders” and with John’s track record working with women, Kirkpatrick will be gone in 6 months. Then you have a guy in the Sheriff’s Office who is a communicator.

  2. Sally on October 18th, 2012 2:24 pm

    This is a great endorsement! Under the current leadership, the Sheriff’s Office has taken the wrong turn, and John Urquhart has what it takes to get it back on track. I am so glad he decided to come out of retirement to save the Sheriff’s Office! Deputies, elected officials, and citizens alike respect John for his straight forward attitude ad no-nonsense work ethic. John Urquhart for Sheriff!!!

  3. John Urquhart for Sheriff - John Urquhart for King County Sheriff - Experienced Leadership | King County Values on October 22nd, 2012 6:42 am

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