GPWA 2018 Fall Gathering Review

by Mary Ellen Knoop

The Green Party of Washington held our Fall Gathering on November 10, 2018 at the Ellensburg Pasta Company.

Everything went well. Although the attendance (17 people) was less that we had hoped, there was representation from most of the state, and it was well-worth the time to be there. The meeting content was great. FairVote WA clarified Ranked Choice Voting (RCV) beautifully, and they are prepared to send at least one of their members to any group in order to give their slide presentation. Great for a local chapter GP meeting!

Boot Camp was great, too. The rest of the program was interesting and informative as well, including the Green Party National Women’s Caucus plan to lobby for public funding of all campaigns.

The food was good and the service was great. The restaurant itself was crowded; it is obviously a popular place in Ellensburg.

The room was perfect for our size group, and the restaurant even had a good film screen. I was surprised that with the day being so beautiful, more didn’t attend. We will have to talk frankly about whether to stay with one or try again to have two state-wide meetings per year. The location, being central, was to me a perfect choice, easily accessible; two members came from The Mid-Columbia, and one from Spokane, along with others who attended from Whatcom County, Snohomish County, Seattle, Tahoma (Pierce County), and South Puget Sound.

Read our summary evaluation of the Gathering here.

Summary of Renata Rollins’ First Year on the Olympia City Council

Renata Rollins, Olympia City Council member, successfully ran for her position as a Green in 2017. This is what Green leadership looks like:

Renata summed up the state of Olympia during her first year on the Olympia City Council as: “We’ve had hard times in the community, but a lot of good groundwork has been done.”

The primary issue that Renata ran on was homelessness. The current Council, thanks to Renata and her alliances with other progressive members, has taken a 180 degree turn in their thinking about homeless issues. City priorities have dramatically changed in the past year, with much more attention to homelessness.

In May, the Council had a retreat to brainstorm policies around reducing the harmful impacts of homelessness. They came out with a new harm-reduction approach: support camping, daytime places to gather, and broaden focus from affordable housing construction to include more immediate housing solutions.

Renata said, “We can’t keep having a whack-a-mole response to homelessness. We need to get in place the basics like sanitation and safe places to camp and stay, and then work on the more difficult issues.”

A tiny-home village is in the works, with 40 dwelling units. Access will be based on an individual’s vulnerability. Renata is also involved with asking Thurston County to move to more evidence-based projects. In addition, there are many in the faith community who want to host encampments who could work with the city.

The 2019 budget cycle is about over. Renata has taken the opportunity this first cycle to learn more about the process. She requested that a Police Auditor be added to the 2019 budget, a contracted position that had been part of the budget years ago. This request has gained support from other council members. Like all local governments, Olympia struggles with revenue – especially from decreasing sales tax revenue. Renata advocated for the city to file an amicus brief supporting Seattle’s income tax case with the WA Supreme Court, which the legal department successfully filed. Hopefully in the future our cities and state will have more progressive tax structures available rather than regressive sales tax and property taxes.

In 2019, Renata will be looking at inclusionary zoning and market-based incentives as currently available tools to encourage affordable housing. For example, city fees could be reduced in exchange for creating units affordable for people earning 50-80% of the average local income. The previous Council approved, and an initiative was passed in February 2018, for a “Home Fund” 0.1% sales and use tax that will be used to create permanent supportive housing for the most vulnerable homeless individuals. So far, the City has purchased some property for affordable housing with funds from this levy.

Renata is also working with a community group on a regional social housing proposal, common in Europe, where public housing is more broadly available to people regardless of income. Social housing essentially is proportional rent – the cost of rent in a building may vary family to family, but the percentage of each family’s income going toward rent would be the same.

Renata has been participating in forming a subgroup of local policymakers to study sea-level rise issues and consider alternatives to the mainstream response that was proposed by hired consultants. Downtown Olympia may need a change in development patterns, as it is built on fill close to the waterline. Additionally, city staff are working closely with the Thurston Regional Planning Council to develop a regional climate change response plan for both mitigation and adaptation.

Renata said that many city department planning processes are currently isolated or siloed. For example, the Parks Plan process has historically asked residents what amenities they want to see in their city parks without regard to how that may impact other important areas such as affordable housing, cost of living, or climate change mitigation and adaptation. With the Parks Plan update commencing in 2019 Renata has been advocating for a more integrated approach to department planning.

Olympia government has a new department: The Office of Performance and Integration (OPI). It happens to be completely staffed by women, who serve as internal consultants for other city departments. They provide a model for community conversations and encourage changing the typical government decision processes to community-driven policies rather than relying on a top-down approach. Renata is meeting with OPI to see how this new process template can be applied to homelessness policy, parks planning and other processes.

Renata serves as Council liaison to the Olympia Heritage Commission. She and a subgroup of the Commission have been meeting to brainstorm ideas, for example, how to honor the area’s traditional stewards, the tribes, by choosing more appropriate place names and posting informative murals or plaques to reflect heritage.

Finally, in 2019 Renata will be working on creating a Human Rights Commission as well as an ordinance for gender-neutral restrooms throughout the city. She will also support work toward getting renters protections such as requiring “just cause” for evictions, and longer notice requirements.


Green Party Endorsements and Preferred Candidates for 2018

The Green Party of Washington State announces our endorsements and preferred candidates for 2018:


Endorsed Candidate:

Andrew Saturn, Green Party member and candidate for Thurston County Public Utility District Commissioner, District 1 (nonpartisan)


Preferred Candidates:

Sarah Smith, Democratic candidate for US House of Representatives in WA-9

Tye Menser, Democratic candidate for Thurston County Commissioner, District 3


Endorsed Initiatives:

Vote YES on I-940, De-Escalate Washington!

Vote YES on I-1631, Clean Air and Clean Energy for WA State!


Mail in your ballot or drop it in an official drop box ->> Here’s a map to help you find the closest drop box.

Voting begins on October 19th and ends on Election Day, November 6th, at 8:00 p.m.


🌻 ~ Reminder ~

Support the Green Party:

Please consider volunteering for one of these open positions!

Thank you,

GPWA Coordinating Council

Keep up with us on Twitter and Facebook
Donations always appreciated and put to good use!

🌻 #WeAreGreen

GPWA Fall Gathering – November 10, 2018

Green Party Fall Gathering 2018

Saturday, November 10th, 12:00 PM – 4:00 PM

Join the Green Party of Washington in beautiful Eastern Washington!

Enjoy meeting Greens from across the state while you enjoy a tasty Italian lunch. Everyone will pay for their own food and drinks.

Ellensburg Pasta Company
600 N. Main St.
Ellensburg, WA 98626

Our Agenda:

We will review the results of the 2018 midterms and GPWA’s new projects and ideas for the future.

We’ll hear from representatives of FairVote WA on the benefits of Ranked Choice Voting (RCV) and on progress to get RCV implemented here in WA.

We will offer a “Boot Camp” for starting and energizing local chapters.

We will look ahead to 2019 and beyond for growing the Green Party in Washington!

We hope all local chapters will send representatives to attend this statewide Gathering of Greens.

Please RSVP in advance. Our room holds only 50 people, so save your spot!

Sign up to attend here:

Registration fee is $10-$25 sliding scale, payable at the door. (No one will be turned away due to financial hardship.)

All Green Party supporters are welcome, regardless of membership status or level of activity.

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Connecting with the Green Party of the United States

The Green Party of the United States is a federation of state Green Parties and caucuses – and the Green Party of Washington State is a member of that federation.

A great deal of information is available on the GPUS website at and you are encouraged to take a look.

For information on proposals currently under consideration by delegates from states and caucuses to GPUS, see

GPWA members may comment on current proposals by emailing us at with the subject line GPUS Proposal Comment.


Meet Stonewall “Stoney” Bird and Jennifer “Gigi” Ferguson

Tired of the same old choices you’ve always had? Looking for a better future for our communities and our country?

Please come join us and meet:

 Stonewall Jackson “Stoney” Bird, Green Party candidate for Congress in CD 2!


Jennifer “Gigi” Ferguson, our preferred candidate for US Senate!

Hadley Hall at the Arlington Boys & Girls Club

Tuesday, June 26th, 2018 from 6-8PM

18513-59th Ave NE

Arlington, WA  98223

In our broken democracy, both Democratic and Republican voters find that the people they vote for do not stand up for them. This is why both Stoney and Gigi are running for office!

Stoney is running for Congress as a Green in Washington’s Second Congressional District and is endorsed by the Green Party of Washington. His aim is to bring the four Green Party pillars of ecology, democracy, peace, and social justice to Congress.

Gigi is running for US Senate as an Independent and is our Green Party preferred candidate. She stands for justice, dignity, equality, and community development. Gigi is willing to take on any corporations or established political interests in service to the people.

Both Stoney and Gigi are committed to cure the plague of gerrymandering and campaign bribes that mean the people we elect can ignore us. Both vow to work to overturn “corporate personhood” and “money is speech”.

In addition, Stoney is active in promoting ranked choice voting and proportional representation, making our votes count and the politicians accountable.

With these changes we will get representatives who represent us, and we will be able to achieve:

  • universal, single-payer healthcare
  • debt-free college
  • fair trade instead of free trade
  • a path to citizenship for all immigrants
  • strongly progressive taxes
  • expanded Social Security benefits
  • living wages and easy union membership
  • a universal basic income
  • a decent place to live for everyone
  • an end to the endless wars – and their endless costs
  • internet neutrality
  • government and corporate spies out of the internet
  • the big banks broken up
  • public control of the money system
  • Post Office banking and state and local government banks
  • no discrimination against anyone
  • voting rights
  • criminal justice reform
  • ending for-profit prisons
  • a Green New Deal
  • clean water, clean land, clean air, and clean electromagnetic space
  • nature treated with respect and gratitude, not as a thing to exploit

Stoney and Gigi both refuse to take corporate money. Moreover, if elected Stoney intends to donate 2/5 of his salary to causes that support Green values.

We hope you will come meet Stoney and Gigi on Tuesday – Please invite your friends!

If you cannot attend, please consider making a donation: 


Support Gigi’s Senate campaign for the people!


Donate to Stoney’s grassroots-powered campaign for Congress!


RSVP on Facebook here:


The Green Party supports Jennifer Gigi Ferguson for US Senate

The Green Party of Washington State (GPWA) has given one candidate in the 2018 US Senate race, Jennifer Gigi Ferguson, preferred status.

GPWA maintains a comprehensive vetting process for recommended candidates. Preferred status is conferred on a candidate who is not a member of the Green Party, but holds many Green and progressive values. An endorsed candidate must be a GPWA current member in good standing. Both endorsed and preferred status candidates must submit a detailed questionnaire, participate in an in-person interview (if possible) with the GPWA Candidate Committee, receive the approval of that committee, and receive a majority of votes in a poll of the general membership.

State election law allows candidates to state their “party preference”; however, this does not mean they are supported by their “preferred” party. In particular, James Robert Deal, running for US Senate in 2018, has announced his party preference as Green, but GPWA does not support, recognize, or endorse him.

None of the five requirements above were fulfilled by Mr. Deal – he is not a current member of GPWA, and his candidacy and party preference were announced a month after the deadline for Green candidates to apply for endorsement.

Click here for a full list of our 2018 endorsements and preferred candidates.

GPWA Endorsements and Preferred Candidates for 2018!

Based on presentations at our Spring Gathering, candidate questionnaires, and member input, the Green Party of Washington State hereby announces our endorsements and preferred candidates for 2018!


GPWA Endorsements:

Stonewall Jackson Bird (Stoney), Green Party candidate for Congress in District 2

Andrew Saturn, Green Party member and candidate for Thurston County Public Utility District Commissioner, District 1 (nonpartisan)


GPWA Preferred Candidates:

Tamborine Borrelli, Green Party member and Independent Progressive Party candidate for Congress in District 10

Jennifer Gigi Ferguson, Independent candidate for US Senate

Tye Menser, Democratic candidate for Thurston County Commissioner District 3

(Note that Green Party member Robert Hunziker requested our endorsement, but did not file for candidacy in CD 8)


The Green Party of Washington State also welcomes our newly elected Coordinating Council and Delegates and Alternates to the Green Party of the United States:

Coordinating Council
At-Large Members – Kathryn Lewandowsky, Mary Ellen Knoop, Maricela Sanchez, Scott Thompson, Jody Grage
Deputy Treasurer – Noah Martin

Green Party US
Delegates – Kathryn Lewandowsky, Jody Grage
Alternates – Lisa Canar, Noah Martin


🌻 ~ Reminder ~

Here are several great ways to support GPWA and our newly elected officers:

Please consider volunteering for one of these open GPWA positions!

Thank you,

GPWA Coordinating Council

Keep up with us on Twitter and Facebook
Donations always appreciated and put to good use!

🌻 #WeAreGreen

Stoney Bird – Green for Congress in District 2!

The Green Party of Washington proudly endorses Stoney Bird’s run for Congress in Washington’s Second Congressional District. A highly successful corporate lawyer until he ceased that work in 1990, Stoney brings a deep understanding of how corrupt and destructive our current political and economic institutions are. In the last 20 years he has worked as a political and community activist bringing environmental, social justice and peace issues to the forefront.


Stoney’s bio follows:

Hi, my name is Stoney Bird. “Stoney” is short for Stonewall Jackson Bird. I’m running for Congress as a Green in Washington’s Second Congressional District.

I’m running because there is a whole raft of issues that people across the political spectrum support and that Congress is doing nothing about. You can see the list here.

We need an election system that produces representative government. We need a Congress that actually responds to the needs of the people. We need health care and homes for all so that all can live in dignity. We need to cut the vast war budget that is producing misery and enemies across the world. We need to replace it with a budget that will protect the natural systems of the world and produce good, ecologically sound work for a living wage for all.

A little about me

After serving in the Peace Corps in the late 1960s, I went to law school, and then worked for big companies: Mobil Oil and Harris Corporation. In the late 1980s I was Harris’ European lawyer, based in England, mostly working on corporate deals.

By then I was in mid-40s and began wondering if I wanted to spend the rest of my life serving the few against the many, serving the corporate bottom line against all the rest of nature. I moved to the Skagit Valley in 1990. It took years, but by the first decade of this millennium I was fully involved with local environmental, transportation and peace movements, and did a stint of community organizing.

In 2011 I moved to Bellingham to be connected with an initiative campaign for a community bill of rights that would have barred the transportation of coal through Bellingham, denied corporate personhood and constitutional rights to corporations that wanted to contravene the ban, declared the right of the people of Bellingham to govern themselves, and acknowledged the rights of the ecosystems in Bellingham to thrive on their own terms. I’ve recently written a series of 17 articles for Whatcom Watch on the theme of impediments to well-being and democracy in the United States. You can find them on journal’s website.

My affinity for the Green Party

I’ve voted for Green Presidential candidates since 2000. In 2014-15 I served on the state Green Party Coordinating Committee, part of the time as campaign coordinator. In that capacity I assisted Bobbie Lewis in his run for the Assembly in the 21st Legislative District. I also consulted with Josh Petersen in his run for the Everett City Council. I’m currently on the Coordinating Committee of the Whatcom Green Party.

My other electoral experience includes numerous initiative campaigns, lobbying on many issues dear to the Greens, running for the Mount Vernon City Council in 2003, and leading two campaigns to restore Skagit Transit’s revenue after I-695.

Of course I support the four pillars and the ten key values. In our times, it’s long overdue that responsible people speak up for these values – all 14!

How you can help

The immediate need is gathering signatures on my filing fee petition. Find out more here.

I’d love to talk to groups across the district, especially in Snohomish County. If you can get me an invitation from any group that you are part of, I’ll do my best to make a visit possible.

GPWA Spring Gathering Update

The Green Party of Washington held our annual Spring Gathering on Saturday, April 14th in Fife, WA.

At our meeting, we heard reports from Green Party officeholders EJ Zita – Thurston County Port Commissioner, and Renata Rollins – Olympia City Councilmember. Live videos of Zita and Renata are posted on our Green Party FB page.

Green Party member and Congressional candidate Stoney Bird gave a short overview on Camp Wellstone, a training program for organizers, campaign workers, and candidates.

Green Party organizer Kathryn Lewandowsky gave a detailed presentation on Initiative 1600 – Healthcare for All – Whole Washington. Volunteers are needed to gather signatures to get this Universal Healthcare initiative on the ballot!

Initiative 1631 – Clean Air and Clean Energy is also gathering signatures!

Candidates for US Congress and for local offices also spoke:

All candidate statements can be found here.

We heard updates from our local Green Party chapters, including Whatcom, Snohomish, Seattle, Tahoma (Pierce County), South Puget Sound, and Mid-Columbia (our newest chapter).

Finally, we took nominations for GPWA Coordinating Council (CC) and GPUS national delegates and alternates.

The following members were nominated to the GPWA CC:

  • Chris Govella – Treasurer
    • Update: Our nominee for Treasurer has since declined, and this position is currently open for nomination.
  • Noah Martin – Deputy Treasurer
  • Jody Grage
  • Kathryn Lewandowsky
  • Maricela Sanchez
  • Mary Ellen Knoop
  • Scott Thompson

The following members were nominated for GPUS delegates:

  • Jody Grage
  • Kathryn Lewandowsky
  • Lisa Canar – alternate
  • Noah Martin – alternate

Short bios for GPWA nominees can be found here.


For Green Party members:

We request your input on the qualification of our nominees, as well as the endorsement / preference of candidates for Congressional and local elected offices, including consideration of three candidates for US Senate. All candidate statements can be found here.

To check your GPWA membership status, see If your membership has lapsed click here to join or renew.

Send an email by May 5th, 2018 to to provide your input on GPWA candidate endorsement and GPWA coordinator / leadership positions.