Urquhart announces he will run for King County Sheriff

John Urquhart - Contributed
John Urquhart
— image credit: Contributed

Former King County Sheriff Office public information officer John Urquhart announced today he will run for the office of King County Sheriff in the November election.

"It was not a decision made lightly, but made after careful consideration, and with input from of a variety of individuals both inside and outside the Sheriff’s Office, as well as my family," said Urquhart, who retired in early 2012 to pursue "other interests."

The KCSO is currently under the leadership of Chief Deputy Steve Strachan, who is acting as the interim sheriff after Sue Rahr stepped down at the end of March.

Urquhart has served the citizens of Washington state as a police officer for more than 36 years — the last 24 with the KCSO. His career included stints as a patrol officer, field training officer, master police officer, street-level vice/narcotics detective, public information officer and administrative aid to sheriffs Dave Reichert and Rahr.

"My campaign for King County Sheriff will be based on leadership and accountability," Urquhart said. "The Sheriff's Office is at a crossroads. I don’t want us to go down the road where we run the risk of losing the support of the citizens we serve. If we go down that wrong road, it will not be because our deputies don’t care. It will be because of a lack of leadership within the agency."

Urquhart lives on Mercer Island with Shelley, his wife of almost 37 years. They have a Chesapeake Bay Retriever named Lulu. They have two daughters, age 26 and 29. One is an ICU nurse in New York City and the other works at an early-learning center in Seattle.

The KCSO employs 700 officers across the county, including contracting with the City of Sammamish.


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