Take 5 lets you learn a little more
about your Board of Governors. If you
have further questions for Gov. James
Armstrong, he can be reached at
James Armstrong was elected to the WSBA Board of Governors in Septem- ber 2011 and represents constituents across the state as an at-large gover- nor. He has his own firm,
Armstrong Law Offices, in Kent, where
he focuses his practice on workers’ compensation and Social Security disability.
Gov. Armstrong served for four years in
the U. S. Marine Corps, received his bachelor’s degree from Western Washington
University, and earned his law degree
from Seattle University School of Law.
This is his third and final year serving on
the Board of Governors.
1Why did you want to serve on the WSBA Board of Governors?
I wanted to serve because there were
opportunities to make an impact on the
future of the legal profession. When I ran,
there were active issues in front of the
Bar that were ripe for involvement: the
referendum that resulted in the lowering
of license fees, the imminence of the Lim-
ited License Legal Technician Rule, and,
looming around the corner, marijuana le-
galization. Prior to serving on the WSBA
Board of Governors, I had been active in
the Loren Miller Bar Association, the old-
est minority bar association in the state.
I served for six years on LMBA’s Execu-
tive Board, including a term as president.
I wanted to bring my experience on the
leadership level to WSBA’s Board, as well
as provide perspectives as a solo practi-
tioner and as a person of color.
2What is the most important les- son you have learned about WSBA
members since you’ve been on the
Our members are quite passionate about
the issues that affect how they practice
law. You can see this passion by the number of members who submit materials
for the Board to consider, and it’s also
seen through their presence at our Board
meetings. There are many opportunities
for members to have their voices heard,
and we encourage members to provide
input on issues that affect them.
3What decision or accomplishment are you the most proud of from your
service on the board?
By far, I’m most proud of the work I’ve
done to advance diversity and inclu-
sion at the WSBA. I serve as chair of
the WSBA Diversity Committee, and to-
gether with many other volunteers and
stakeholders, we developed the Diversi-
ty and Inclusion Plan that was approved
by the Board of Governors in 2013. The
plan rests on the fundamental assump-
tion that WSBA’s commitment to its own
culture of inclusion and cultural compe-
tence provides the best foundation for
4What has been the most difficult decision you had to make as a gov-
ernor, and why?
It was really tough to be a part of the decision to reduce staff at the
WSBA, which came as a
consequence of the referendum. We lost good,
hard-working professionals who provided service to our 35,000 members. These
types of decisions are always difficult,
since they affect people’s livelihoods.
However, it had to be done for the good
of the order. It was difficult nonetheless.
5Can you share one thing we may not know about you?
I love a good adrenaline rush. I bungee
jumped in Nanaimo, B.C., and jumped off
the Stratosphere in Las Vegas. And I’d do
it all over again, oorah! NWL
TAKE 5 WITH JAMES ARMSTRONG
Meet the Board
WSBA Gov. James Armstrong