Kochmar announces candidacy for Federal Way mayor

Linda Kochmar during the 2010 State of the City address. - File photo
Linda Kochmar during the 2010 State of the City address.
— image credit: File photo

On Monday, Federal Way Mayor Linda Kochmar announced her candidacy to become the city's first elected mayor.

Kochmar was first elected to the city council member in 1997, and was appointed mayor under the current form of government in January. Last fall, voters approved an initiative to change Federal Way's government, replacing the city manager and appointed mayor with a strong elected mayor who earns $112,800 a year.

City council member Jim Ferrell led a campaign to pass last year's initiative, and was the first declared candidate for mayor. City council member Michael Park announced his candidacy last month. The filing date for candidates is June 7-11. A primary election will be held Aug. 17. The general election will take place Nov. 2.

Kochmar, a risk manager with Lakehaven Utility District, said that 30 years of experience and knowledge in local government helps make her the better candidate.

"What we have to do is bring in revenue," said Kochmar, vowing to run a clean campaign void of negative attacks on opponents.

A kick-off event for Kochmar's campaign will run 1 to 4 p.m. May 23 at the home of James and Veronika Marino, 31323 Second Ave. SW, Federal Way. All are invited. To learn more, visit (coming soon) or e-mail

Candidate updates

As of press time Monday, city council member Michael Park's campaign claimed $75,045 in contributions, according to the state Public Disclosure Commission (PDC) Web site at Park said he officially announced his campaign March 26.

"This is the time for the community to collaborate in overcoming economic challenges," said Park, a native of South Korea.

City council member Jim Ferrell's campaign filed a complaint March 29 with the PDC against Park over a possible violation of candidacy announcement rules. Park's registration appeared online March 30, and the complaint is currently under review, a PDC spokeswoman said.

"This is an important election for this community. We need a process that has integrity," Ferrell said March 29 regarding the complaint.

Park, who owns a dry cleaning business, was appointed to the city council in June 1995, and won re-election to his seat later that year. Park has been re-elected in 1999, 2003 and 2007, and served as Federal Way’s mayor from 2000-2001 and 2006-2007.

Ferrell, a King County prosecuting attorney, was first elected to city council in 2003, then re-elected in 2007. In 2009, he led the effort to pass Proposition 1 and change Federal Way's form of government, citing the need for full-time executive-driven leadership and accountability.

As of press time Monday, Ferrell's campaign has claimed $13,093.51 in contributions and $12,689.79 in expenditures, according to the PDC Web site.

Ferrell will host an official campaign kick-off at 7:30 a.m. April 20 at Twin Lakes Golf and Country Club. To learn more, visit or call (863) 450-8225.

More info: Video

This video offers insight from a recent forum regarding Federal Way's change in government:

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