Top honors for Tacoma attorney

David Huey, assistant attorney general for Washington state, yesterday was honored with the prestigious Marvin Award from the National Association of Attorneys Generals (NAAG) for his work on consumer protection issues including nationwide settlements with two sub-prime mortgage lenders.

“Assistant Attorney General David Huey has a sterling reputation among attorneys general throughout the country and for good reason,” Washington Attorney General Rob McKenna said. “NAAG’s decision to recognize Dave with this prestigious award points to his remarkable contributions to Washington State and consumers nationwide.

“Dave Huey’s long history of accomplishment, his gently effective leadership style and commitment to protecting vulnerable consumers and promoting ethical business practices make him truly deserving of this honor,” McKenna said.

Idaho Attorney General Lawrence Wasden, chair of the awards committee, surprised Huey when presenting him with the Marvin Award during NAAG’s summer meeting in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho.

“David’s outstanding work on the Household and Ameriquest cases resulted in the two largest consumer protection settlements in history,” Wasden said.

Huey works for the Consumer Protection Division in the Attorney General’s Office in Tacoma. Among his contributions:

— Helped negotiate a $325 million nationwide settlement with Ameriquest Mortgage Company. The agreement reached in January resolves allegations of widespread fraud by the company as part of a high-pressure scheme to sell mortgages that trapped consumers into debt and put them at risk of losing their homes.

— Helped negotiate a landmark $484 million settlement with Household International. The agreement reached in 2002 set a new standard of conduct for the sub-prime home lending industry.

— Obtained a resolution in a Qwest Communications case addressing customer service issues in Washington. 

— Provided trusted leadership to the NAAG Charitable Solicitations work group.

“David Huey’s passion for his work stems from a true concern for people and communities,” McKenna said. “Staff at all levels in our office look to him for guidance and describe him as a creative thinker and a genius problem-solver.”

Huey came to Washington in 2001 from the North Dakota Attorney General’s Office, where he spent 13 years working on consumer protection, antitrust, charity, agriculture and gaming cases. He was recognized for effective leadership in a multi-state effort to address fraud related to charitable solicitations. Prior to his government career, he worked in private practice as a banking law attorney.

Named after Ray Marvin, executive director of NAAG from 1976 to 1986, the Marvin Award is given annually. The award recognizes excellence and dedicated service by assistant attorneys general who have taken on leadership roles in multi-state legal initiatives and other projects.

Iowa Attorney General Tom Miller nominated Huey for the Marvin Award, and Huey was chosen by a committee of attorneys general from throughout the nation.