I’m a lifelong resident of Spokane, where I live with my wife, Amanda, and two young children. I have been actively engaged in our community ever since my days as a Mead Panther and a student at Gonzaga. My family upbringing and Jesuit education called me to explore public service as a way of giving back, to fight for social justice and the common good.
To me, public service is a way of life. I am a downtown Rotary 21 member and a former City of Spokane Plan Commissioner. I serve as Project Manager for CHAS and worked as Operations Manager for the Northeast Community Center in Hillyard—organizations that provide daily support to some of our most vulnerable populations. I am deeply committed to fostering opportunities for young people in Spokane, a passion I have built on by serving as a youth soccer coach, as a Big Brother with Big Brothers and Sisters of Spokane, co-directing the Spokane YMCA Youth Legislature Delegation, and serving on the Spokane advisory board for Daybreak Youth Services. As your State Representative, I serve on the LEAP committee, including two years as Chair, facilitating transparency and accountability in legislative budget processes in our state.
Amanda and I are raising our family in Spokane because we love it here and believe in our potential as a community. As products of Spokane Public Schools and the nurturing of the Spokane community, we have been lucky enough to take advantage of all of the wonderful things this area has to offer. We want our two young children to have not only the same opportunities we have had, but even greater opportunities. Our kids need to go to first-rate public schools that prepare them for a college education they can afford. I want them to be safe at all times. I want them to grow up with a deep-seated appreciation for our environment—an environment that I hope will be cleaner, healthier, and more beautiful when they are adults than it is now. I want my son to expect that he and his sister must be paid the same for the same work and be treated equally. Most importantly, I want them to grow up knowing that they can do anything they set their mind to.
Education and Legislative Experience
I graduated from Gonzaga University with a Bachelors of Business Administration, and from the University of Washington with a Masters of Public Administration. From 2007 to 2010, I served as U.S. Senator Maria Cantwell’s Eastern Washington Director. Then from 2010 to 2012, I served as Senior Policy Advisor to Washington State Senate Majority Leader Lisa Brown. I was elected to the state legislature in 2012 and currently I serve on the Health Care & Wellness Committee, which I vice-chaired for three years, as well as on the Capital Budget, Transportation, and Rules committees. I was honored to have been elected by my colleagues to the leadership role of Majority Whip in 2016. I also serve on the Governor’s Council for the Healthiest Next Generation, Joint Legislative Executive Committee on Planning for Aging and Disability Issues and am the former chair of the Legislative Evaluation and Accountability Program Committee.
Outside of my duties representing Washington’s third legislative district, I work as a Project Manager for CHAS, the Community Health Association of Spokane. I’ve also worked as an adjunct instructor at Eastern Washington University’s College of Health Science and Public Health and worked as Operations Manager for the Northeast Community Center.
When I first ran for office, I was asked my top five priorities if elected. One was to bring a four-year medical school to Spokane. I am proud to have prime sponsored and passed legislation that brought the WSU medical school to Spokane. Another top priority was to work to complete the North Spokane Corridor. As a member of the Transportation Chair’s cabinet for the transportation package, I helped secure over $1 billion for new transportation investments in our community to create jobs and promote the interconnectivity of our region, including $878.9 million to connect the North Spokane Corridor to I-90. Other priorities included creating jobs and protecting vulnerable members of our community.
As a member of the Capital Budget committee, I worked hard to help secure $125 million for Spokane, in the most recent Capital Budget. That boost in infrastructure has created numerous job opportunities for our working families and invested in critical infrastructure projects. I have worked hard to protect our most vulnerable by expanding access to quality health care and expand our dental capacity throughout our region and state and passing the strongest bill in the nation to ban income discrimination by landlords. The final priority was to fully fund K-12 education. I am happy to say this too has been achieved by adding $776 million to public schools, giving teachers and public school employees much needed raises.
I believe in putting his community and people first and have worked with advocates and colleagues from both sides of the aisle to prime sponsor and pass legislation creating the WSU Elson S. Floyd College of Medicine, which trains homegrown doctors to help fill the needs of our state’s rural and underserved communities. I have also worked on the bipartisan transportation package that makes significant investments in the North Spokane Corridor, which will expand employment opportunities in the Spokane region, move freight, and reduce travel time by several million hours each year.
North Spokane YMCA Advisory Board member
Appointee, Legislative Evaluation and Accountability Program Committee
Rotarian, Spokane Rotary Club 21
Youth Soccer Coach
Member, Eastern Washington Long Term Care Ombudsman Program Advisory Council
Appointee, Joint Legislative Executive Committee on Planning for Aging and Disability Issues
Chair, Dental One Table
Appointee, Community Economic Revitalization Board
Member, Spokane Public Schools Public Affairs Advisory Council
Awards and Honors
2019 Oral Health Hero
2019 Food Lifeline Legislative Champion
2018 Latino Hope Foundation Elected Official of the Year
2018 Shape Washington award for service promoting physical education in schools
2016 Washington State Medical Association Legislator of the Year
2016 Washington State Democrats Elected Official of the Year
2016 Legislator of the Year Award Student Government Council of WSU
2015 Washington Sustainable Food & Farming Network 2015 Advocate Award
2013 Washington State Housing Finance Association Proud Partner Award
2013 WACOPS House Democrats Legislator of the Year
2013 Associate Students of Washington State University Champion of Higher Education Award
2013 Chase Youth Foundation Champion of Youth Award for Government
2013 Washington Student Association Legislator of the Year
2013 Washington State Young Democrats Half Lifetime Achievement Award
2012 Washington State Democrats Warren G. Magnuson Award for Rising Star of the Year
Together we’ve accomplished a lot in the past eight years—a down payment on a great future for Spokane families. You can read about some more of our accomplishments in Olympia and what we have already delivered for our community here. But there is so much work left to be done. I remain focused on investing in our neighborhood schools, protecting our most vulnerable and creating family-wage jobs to grow our economy. You can read more detailed information about several of the issues that I will continue to protect and fight for here.
I want to thank you for visiting my website and taking time to participate in our democratic process. I strive to be extremely accessible, so if you have additional questions or thoughts about how we can make Spokane and our state better, give me a ring on my cell phone 509-879-7805. I work for you. I am confident that if re-elected, together, we will continue to move Spokane forward. I would appreciate your vote!