Meet The Challenger: Burien’s Matt Hale Takes On Superior Court Incumbent

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by Mark Neuman

Superior Court candidate and Burien native Matt Hale and his wife Nicole stop by the B-Town Blog booth at the Olde Burien Summer Block Party July 12.Matt Hale has been starting early and thinking big since his early days here in Burien, and he’s still tackling early and big things today.

The 1998 graduate of Highline High School, who was already taking college courses at age 17, is running for a seat on the King County Superior Court.

He’s wasting little time pursing his longtime dream.

“I’ve always wanted to serve on the bench. I was talking with a friend about my goals and he said ‘Well, why don’t you run now?’ And I decided ‘I’ll do it.’”

You may have seen his orange and blue yard signs around town recently.

He’s taking on two-term incumbent Laura Gene Middaugh, wife of State Senator Adam Kline.

Matt is currently an attorney at Wiener, Lambka & Deutscher, a Seattle-based personal injury firm.

He earned an academic scholarship that helped pay his tuition at Gonzaga University Law School. He earned his BA in Political Science at Gonzaga. Before that, he pursued writing and public speaking while earning his AA at Highline Community College.

His work experience has included employment at local hardware stores. In Spokane, Matt helped counsel people in crisis, answering an emergency telephone hotline.

He feels one change the court might look at is the role played by the citizen juror.

“A friend of mine was called and he told the judge that to serve might literally cost him his house. He was living from check to check,” Matt says.

“Perhaps there might be a way in the future for the court system to ease the burden of jury duty.”

The mere process of running for office has been a learning experience.

“Campaigning has helped me more fully realize how wonderful not only Burien is, but what great people the residents of King County really are.”

“I am moved by the importance of the service to the community that judges provide from the bench. That knowledge and awareness, in itself, is humbling,” he said.

You can meet Matt, his wife Nicole, and his team at a campaign fundraiser this Sunday afternoon, July 20, at HiLine Lanes, 15733 Ambaum Blvd SW, in Burien. It runs from 1 to 4pm.

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