July 5, 2012
On the 30th anniversary of the week she began her legal career, Washington Supreme Court Justice Susan Owens is visiting credit unions. She is working toward another term, campaigning for reelection in the Aug. 7 primary. Her legal career includes 19 years as District Court Judge in Western Clallam County, 11 as a Tribal Judge and nearly 12 years on Washington’s highest court.
In the executive office at iQ Credit Union, President and CEO Roger Michaelis took time to warmly welcome Owens. Michaelis is busy, too. It’s the day before the five-day Waterfront Blues Festival kicks off to benefit the Oregon Food Bank, and the annual event is made possible in large part because of iQ’s sponsorship. But Michaelis and his senior management team seemed delighted to talk with Owens about the campaign.
On this particular day, she’s also been welcomed at Fibre Federal Credit Union (FFCU), chatting comfortably with President and CEO Larry Hoff about the credit union’s proud 75-year history, steeped in support of mill workers who pooled their resources in 1937 and grew to now serve almost 70,000 members—in fact, one in two residents of Cowlitz County is a Fibre member. That’s a story Owens likes.
Late last week, Seattle Metropolitan Credit Union (SMCU) opened its doors to Justice Owens as well, and she met with new CEO Richard Romero.
Owens, a credit union member, enjoys the interaction with credit union leadership and members, because “they’re always such good people.” It’s the stuff of which a dignified Supreme Court campaign is made—it’s mostly low key and lacks both the high profile and mudslinging that is a signature in some of the political races voters are used to. It can be difficult to raise awareness in a judicial campaign about who is running. Owens recommends a website called votingforjudges.org.
Owens, fellow Justice Steve Gonzales and returning candidate Richard Sanders received campaign support from the Northwest Credit Union Association’s (NWCUA’s) Credit Union Legislative Action Fund (CULAF).
Credit union visits make that support even more helpful by connecting candidates such as Owens to real people. In the last week, she reached out to financial institutions representing more than 155,000 thousand of them.
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