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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Friday, June 23, 2017
Meghan Porter, Public Information Officer, (360)867-2097, or email at porterm@co.thurston.wa.us 

Commissioners Finalize Panel and Interviewees for Public Defense Director
Initial interviews will begin in late June

OLYMPIA – The Thurston County Commissioners approve a list of applicants to be interviewed for the director position for Thurston County Public Defense. 

The Commissioners invited a number of community representatives and subject matter experts to be part of the interview process and provide recommendations to the Commissioners. The panel is tasked with initial screening and interviewing applicants. The panel includes representatives from:
  • Washington State Office of Public Defense
  • Retired Supreme Court Justice
  • NW Justice Project
  • Black Alliance of Thurston County 
  • Thurston Group of Washington
After a nationwide recruitment, the community representative advisory panel and Commissioners have narrowed 18 applicants down to five for an initial interview. The first interview panel will make a recommendation of the top two or three candidates for a second interview with the Commissioners. 

“The Public Defense director is a very important position in our community,” said Commission Chair, Bud Blake. “We wanted to make sure that we had representatives across the community to help in making this decision.”

Expected next steps: 
  • Initial interviews completed by the end of June
  • Second interviews held in mid-July 
  • Thorough reference and background checks conducted on the finalists
  • Commissioners hope to make an offer by early August 

County Commissioners:

Carolina Mejia
District 1

Gary Edwards
District 2

Tye Menser
District 3