Hawkins to continue as lead Republican on Senate K-12 education committee

Sen. Brad Hawkins will continue serving as ranking Republican on the Senate Early Learning and K-12 Education Committee when the Legislature begins its 2021 session on Jan. 11.

Hawkins has served on the education panel since joining the Senate in 2017. Prior to joining the Legislature in 2013, Hawkins served for 10 years on two local school boards, the North Central Educational Service District Board and the Eastmont School Board. In addition, Hawkins’ wife is a local teacher and they have two sons in public schools.

“I’m looking forward to serving again this session as the Senate’s education committee’s ranking Republican member. Our school system has definitely had its share of challenges lately with the COVID pandemic and I believe the experiences I bring to the table can help shape good state policy,” says Hawkins.

“Senator Hawkins brings helpful experience and leadership to the education committee in his position as its ranking member,” said 41st District Sen. Lisa Wellman, who serves as the committee chair. “With children in school and from a different part of the state, his perspective provides added value. It will be particularly helpful that we have such a solid working relationship as we tackle the challenges of COVID recovery for our students and the economy.”

Hawkins also will return to the Senate State Government and Elections Committee. His new committee assignment will be with the Senate Transportation Committee, which addresses transportation issues impacting Washington and crafts and passes a two-year state transportation budget.

“The Transportation Committee was one that I requested because of my hydrogen vehicles legislation and the unique transportation needs of our region, so I’m glad it worked out,” says Hawkins.

He added, “I’ve always considered myself a strong supporter of clean transportation options, preservation of our roadways, and for construction projects important to the 12th District. The Legislature will likely be developing the next statewide transportation package within the next two years, so I look forward to being at the table to advocate for projects like Confluence Parkway across the Wenatchee River Bridge, a future interchange in Douglas County near the Odabashian Bridge, and repairs to aging bridges in the Methow Valley.”

“I look forward to working with Senator Hawkins on the Transportation Committee next session,” said 14th District Sen. Curtis King, R-Yakima and ranking Republican on the committee. “Our districts have similar transportation needs and I’ve enjoyed working with him in the past on important transportation projects. He is a tenacious advocate for his district’s projects, which I appreciate.”

The 2021 legislative session is scheduled to last 105 days.

(The photo at top shows Sen. Curtis King and Sen. Brad Hawkins sharing a laugh together last legislative session. They will serve together next year on the Senate Transportation Committee. King is the committee’s ranking Republican member and worked closely with Hawkins in 2017 to secure funding for the West Cashmere Bridge.)