Attorney General of Washington 
   Attorney General Christine O. Gregoire  

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Photo of Christine O. Gregoire

Christine Gregoire is Washington's 16th State Attorney General and the first woman elected to the position in state history.

Ms. Gregoire, who is beginning her third term, was raised in Auburn, Washington, and graduated from the University of Washington in 1969 with a teaching certificate and Bachelor of Arts degree in speech and sociology. In 1977, she received a Juris Doctorate degree and, in 1995, an honorary Doctor of Law degree from Gonzaga University.

As Attorney General, Ms. Gregoire has worked to protect the state's most vulnerable citizens - our children and the elderly. As the 1999-2000 President of the National Association of Attorneys General (NAAG), Ms. Gregoire lead a major project to identify causes and solutions of youth violence. The results were published in the NAAG publication, Bruised Inside, What our Children Say About Youth Violence, What Causes It, and What We Need to Do About It. Her office also has produced materials that can be used to make schools safer.

Ms. Gregoire created a special criminal unit to prosecute those who abuse vulnerable adults, started training programs to protect seniors from financial exploitation, and used the Consumer Protection Act to stop business practices that prey on our elderly.

She recently formed a strike team of attorneys and investigators to focus on Internet fraud and crime. The new High Tech Unit will prosecute consumer protection and criminal cases as well as provide expertise to local law enforcement on Internet crimes. It has also developed a unique mediation program where consumers and businesses can attempt to resolve conflicts on-line.

Ms. Gregoire has been a leader on the issue of consumer privacy rights by championing consumers' right to protect financial information from misuse and abuse.

In November 1998, as the lead negotiator for states, Ms. Gregoire announced the settlement of state lawsuits against the tobacco industry. The settlement provides the largest financial settlement in the history of the world and mandates tough, new restrictions on cigarette advertising and youth marketing. In the first 25 years alone Washington State will receive $4.5 billion from tobacco companies. Ms. Gregoire chairs the Board of Directors for a new multi-state foundation that was established by the settlement agreement and is funded by the tobacco industry to develop anti-smoking education and cessation programs nationwide.

During her tenure as Director of the Washington Department of Ecology between 1988 to 1992, Ms. Gregoire negotiated the Tri-Party Agreement (TPA) with the federal government for the safe cleanup and permanent storage of radioactive wastes at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation in Eastern Washington. In 1998, Ms. Gregoire announced a breakthrough agreement with the U.S. Department of Energy (USDOE) to resolve the lawsuit filed by her office to uphold the terms of the TPA and keep Hanford cleanup on track and moving forward. With this agreement for the first time in history, USDOE is required to cleanup the "worst first" by prioritizing projects based on the highest level of environmental risk.

Other major accomplishments include: arguing and winning a significant U.S. Supreme Court case which clarified key provisions of the federal Clean Water Act; leading an effort to approve tougher state ethics laws; and, establishing stronger legal protections for victims of domestic violence and child abuse.

Ms. Gregoire's public service leadership and accomplishments have earned her recognition at both the state and national level. Her most recent awards include the Excellence in Leadership Award from the National Leadership Conference of Women Executives in State Government; the top Woman in Government Award from Good Housekeeping Magazine; the Woman of the Year Award from the American Legion Auxiliary; the Award of Excellence from the Washington State Association of Local Public Health Officials; the 2000 Special Recognition Award from the Washington State Nurses Association; and, her selection as one of the nation's 25 Most Influential Working Mothers by Working Mother Magazine. Ms. Gregoire has also received the Myra Bradwell Award from Gonzaga University School of Law; the Washington State Bar Association Board of Governor's Award for Professionalism; the prestigious Wyman Award from the National Association of Attorneys General; the Gleitsman Award for leadership in public health; and, the Governor's Child Abuse Prevention Award for spearheading a major effort to reform Washington's juvenile system.

Ms. Gregoire's legal career began in the AG's Spokane Office in 1976 as a law clerk. She became an Assistant Attorney General working on child abuse and neglect cases in 1977. In 1982, one year after being promoted to Senior Assistant Attorney General and top manager of the Spokane Office, Ms. Gregoire became the first woman to be appointed Deputy Attorney General.

Ms. Gregoire and her husband Michael reside in Olympia with their two daughters.

Updated 1/30/01


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