Pierce County Executive John W. Ladenburg announced Tuesday that he will run for re-election in 2004.
Although the election for county executive is more than a year away, he wanted to make his plans clear to those who have been encouraging him to run for state office.
We have come a long way in the last three years, and I want to see that progress continue, Ladenburg said. Were on the verge of taking our place as the statewide leader in commerce, growth, jobs and the environment.
Many people have been urging me to run for either governor or attorney general, and I have spent several weeks considering all options, Ladenburg said. I have decided that my commitment to Pierce County comes first. The fact that family and friends have all said that they will support whatever I decide has been very gratifying.
Ladenburg said he particularly relishes the leadership opportunities available as executive of the second most populous county in Washington State.
The attorney general office deals with legal issues. The job of governor offers the policy options and influence that compares with the county executive position. While I feel that I could be effective in Olympia, my commitment to our county demands that I stay here and do what I can to make it better, he said.
With Snohomish County Executive Bob Drewel and King County Executive Ron Sims both leaving office in two years or less, Ladenburg will be the senior executive in the Tri-County area.
In this capacity, Ladenburg’s leadership will be especially important in dealing with regional issues such as transportation, salmon restoration and economic development.