Eastside Business Alliance Releases Final Round of Endorsements

Oct 10, 2019


Tel: 425-213-1200

Bellevue Chamber launches online Eastside Voter’s Guide

Bellevue, WA – The Eastside Business Alliance (EBA), sponsored by the Bellevue Chamber, has completed its rigorous election endorsement processes and released a list of 19 pro-growth candidates for local, non-partisan office on the Eastside. EBA trustees spent three months researching and interviewing 38 candidates for office. You can read all our endorsements at

Kirkland City Council Position 4

Toby Nixon: Endorsed Highly Qualified

When considering which candidates to interview this  year, we could have given Toby Nixon a free pass, based upon his consistent support of the business community over his long tenure as an elected official.  Despite our past endorsements, Toby took nothing for granted and was pleased to make made his case for re-election based upon core principles such as limiting taxes and the regulatory burden on small and medium-sized businesses, compassion for those most in need, and open and transparent government at all levels.

Toby Nixon is a true citizen politician with a broad civic and political resume including two terms in the Legislature, a stint as a King County Fire District Commissioner, and community service assignments with Attain Housing, Lake Washington Schools Foundation and Youth Eastside Services, to name a few. We enthusiastically support Toby Nixon for another term.

Redmond City Council Position 3

Hank Margeson: Endorsed Highly Qualified

Hank Margeson has held a variety of leadership positions since his first election in 2007. He’s been chosen by his colleagues to serve as Council President and Vice-President, as well as chair of the Finance, Administration, and Planning and Public Works Committees. At the regional level, Hank has represented his community well on the Sound Cities Association (SCA) Board of Directors, the PSRC Growth Management Policy Board and the King County Open Space Advisory Committee. Each of these assignments require tact, diplomacy and a grasp of complex policy .

Most important, Hank’s business background and his solid record of community service with Hopelink, Redmond Derby Days and as a youth soccer and baseball coach, all point to his skills as a consensus builder. Hank is the type of leader our region needs now more than ever. We’ve endorsed Hank in each of his previous campaigns and recommend him for a fourth term.

Redmond City Council Position 5

Vanessa Kritzer: Endorsed

Redmond, like many other Eastside cities, is on the rise. It faces challenges with growth and infrastructure that demand connected and energetic elected leaders. Vanessa Kritzer has the potential to be one of these leaders. A former student Regent at the University of Washington and Redmond Planning Commission member, Vanessa has experience locally and nationally in making government work. For Redmond voters, her experience in harnessing technology and innovation in the public sector comes at the right time and in the right place.

Renton City Council Position 4

Ryan McIrvin: Endorsed

It’s one thing to celebrate young leaders for winning an election, but it is entirely more appropriate to raise up those who have been effective once placed in that position of power and trust. Ryan McIrvin deserves re-election for his accomplishments, his collaborative character, and his deep community connections. He is well-versed with issues facing the business community from his years serving the Association of REALTORS.

As Chair of the City of Renton Transportation Committee he is charged with the delicate job of balancing the mobility needs of neighborhood commuters and 737 wing assemblies. He has shown his capacity to help lead Renton’s promising future

Renton City Council Position #3

Valerie O’Halloran: Endorsed

In the race for vacant Council Position #3, Valerie O’Halloran is a strong candidate. With a long civic resume and a list of endorsements from business, labor, and community groups citywide, O’Halloran will be able to hit the ground running. With the retirement of current Mayor Dennis Law and Council President Don Persson, the Renton City Council will need someone who has a finger on the pulse of the community to fill this position.  In a community where neighborhood politics matter, Valerie is a candidate with deep roots.

We like her opponent, Renton Chamber Board Chair James Alberson and hope he will continue to deepen his resume and seek appointment to a City board or commission. For this election, however, Valerie O’Halloran is our choice.

Mercer Island City Council Position #1

David Rosenbaum: Endorsed

There is growing pressure on Mercer Island to reject initiatives that would keep the island community on pace with our growing cosmopolitan region.  David Rosenbaum sees another path forward. Instead, David wants to help Mercer Island grow with the region while maintaining its high quality of life. David thinks the city can do more to help small businesses prosper and seek to return the city to a responsible fiscal footing.

We approve of David’s pragmatic approach to government. Should he achieve election, we hope he will sharpen his position in opposition to rent control and right-of-way acquisitions by utilities, two issues of importance to the Eastside business community.

Mercer Island City Council Position #5                                                                                                                             

Craig Reynold: Endorsed

As with many smaller communities on the Eastside, Mercer Island is experiencing some significant budgetary issues that will need forward thinking and tough decisions. Craig’s professional background and passion will bring a thoughtful and levelheaded approach to those vexing issues. He understands the difference between one-time cuts and ongoing, sustainable efficiencies in municipal government. These are tough conversations, but ones that need to take place.

We believe he will help chart a needed balance between growth in the downtown core, island mobility, growth, quality of life, and environmental stewardship. In addition, as the current vice-chair of the Planning Commission, we’re confident he’ll advocate for an inclusive approach to implementing the adopted Town Center Vision, one which is needed to preserve existing small merchants while attracting new businesses.

The Eastside Business Alliance, sponsored by the Bellevue Chamber, is led by a diverse group of trustees representing industries and firms of all sizes throughout the Eastside. Candidates in open races or where the incumbent has not been previously endorsed complete a written questionnaire and participate in an extended interview process with the Board as part of the endorsement process.


For additional information regarding the Eastside Business Alliance or its endorsement process please reach out to

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