Booth Gardner: A timeline
The public life of former Gov. Booth Gardner, who died Friday, spanned nearly four decades from his election to the state Senate to his advocacy for Washington’s Death with Dignity initiative, which he called his last campaign.
1970 — In his first campaign, Booth Gardner is elected to the Washington State Senate at age 34.
1973 — Resigns from the State Senate to became president of Laird Norton Co., which owned lumberyards, real estate, shopping centers, industrial parks and a major stake in Weyerhaeuser.
1981 — Elected Pierce County’s first county executive under a new charter approved by voters in the wake of cronyism and scandal.
1984 — Elected governor of Washington, defeating Republican John Spellman in a race in which his own campaign buttons asked the question “Booth Who?”
1988 — Easily wins second term, defeating State Rep. Bob Williams, a Republican accountant from Longview.
1990 — Legislature approves Gardner’s “Learning by Choice” plan, which mandated open enrollment and Running Start, an advanced-placement program.
1991 — At an unexpected news conference, announces he won’t seek another term, saying he is “out of gas.”
1993 — Chosen by President Clinton as U.S. ambassador to the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade in Geneva, renamed the World Trade Organization at Gardner’s suggestion.
1994 — Diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease.
2000— Helps found Booth Gardner Parkinson’s Care Center in Kirkland.
2008 — Voters pass Washington’s “Death with Dignity” initiative, becoming the second state to allow assisted suicide, after Gardner serves as the public face of what he calls his last campaign.
March 15, 2013 — Gardner dies of complications of Parkinson’s disease.
Sources: HistoryLink.org; Gardner family obituary; The Seattle Times