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Originally published March 7, 2011 at 9:44 PM | Page modified March 7, 2011 at 10:21 PM

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Gary Locke: biography and timeline

Age: 61, born in Seattle Experience: King County deputy prosecutor, 1976-80; Washington state lawmaker, 1982-93; King County executive...

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Age: 61, born in Seattle

Experience: King County deputy prosecutor, 1976-80; Washington state lawmaker, 1982-93; King County executive, 1994-97; Washington governor, 1997-2005; partner, Davis Wright Tremaine law firm, 2005-2009; secretary of commerce, 2009-present

Education: Bachelor's degree, Yale University, 1972; law degree, Boston University, 1975

Family: Wife, Mona Lee Locke; three children

Timeline

1982: Elected to state House from Seattle's 37th District; for five years, chaired appropriations committee, a job that involves writing and negotiating state budget

1993: Elected King County executive, defeating incumbent Tim Hill; cut budget, expanded transit services, developed nationally acclaimed growth-management plan

1996: Elected governor, defeating Republican Ellen Craswell and becoming nation's first Chinese-American governor

1998: Leads opposition to voter-approved Initiative 200, which prohibited race-based preferences in state hiring, contracting and college admissions; opposes voter-approved Referendum 49, which cut vehicle taxes and pumped $2.4 billion into road construction by shifting money out of general fund

2000: Voters approve two ballot initiatives, to boost teacher salaries and reduce class sizes by hiring more teachers; pushes through Legislature an economic-development package for rural communities; re-elected to second term by defeating Republican John Carlson

2001: Legislature and Locke fail to pass transportation plan; Boeing announces headquarters will move to Chicago, prompting criticism that the governor failed to heed business concerns; creates Washington Competitiveness Council to keep companies

2002: Voters reject Referendum 51, a $7.8 billion roads package, prompting criticism that Locke showed no leadership by pushing for referendum to be placed on ballot.

2003: Delivers Democratic response to President Bush's State of the Union address; favors cuts over tax increases to deal with projected $2.6 billion budget deficit; proposes $3 billion incentive package to Boeing for 7E7 Dreamliner program

2005: Becomes partner in Davis Wright Tremaine law firm in Seattle

2006: Works to bring Chinese President Hu Jintao to Seattle to meet with state and business leaders

2008: Runs leg of Olympic torch relay in China before Beijing Olympics

2009: Nominated by President Obama to lead Commerce Department (sworn in March 26)

2011: Nominated by Obama for ambassadorship to China

Source: Seattle Times archives

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