Winning is only the beginning

Elections | 11/06/2020

Katie Gustainis
Marketing & Communications Director, Stand for Children Washington

Although we’re still waiting on many ballot counts to be finalized in Washington races and the national election, we’re proud to say that this year, together, we have already made incredible progress here in Washington on the path to building a better tomorrow for our students.

The work we’ve done together means that education champions have been elected to the state legislature from every corner of the state. Along with our dedicated volunteers, our team gathered online to send over 119,000 text messages and we reached half a million households with digital advertising in support of candidates who will make students their priority in Olympia.

Your efforts paid off. We supported endorsed candidates in nine target races with advertising and voter contact efforts and have so far seen success for five candidates, with three still too close to call as of Friday afternoon.

Here are some updates on all our top priority races as of Thursday afternoon’s ballot count:

(* indicates incumbent, bold indicates endorsement) 

Superintendent of Public Instruction (Statewide)
Stand Endorsed: Superintendent Chris Reykdal

One race we’re proud to highlight is the re-election of Washington State Superintendent Chris Reykdal as the leader of our state's schools.

Superintendent Reykdal and his team at OSPI stood behind a proposal Stand for Children Washington helped develop to increase the impact of counselors in schools, allowing teachers to focus on curriculum with the support of other specialized professionals stepping in to help meet individual students’ needs. Together we will pursue this legislation again in 2021 at a time when students need extra support more than ever. 

Stand prioritized this race after the primary election and started with a poll to assess our viability and most effective messages amidst an intense political climate. We executed a digital advertising campaign and recruited volunteers to text voters throughout the state in support of the Superintendent. We also had several volunteers write personal endorsements of Chris Reykdal that we shared with our supporters and on our website.

  • *Chris Reykdal 55.97% (winner)
  • Maia Espinoza 43.52

Legislative District 5 (Issaquah)
Stand Endorsed: Senator Mark Mullet (D) 

Incumbent Senator Mark Mullet is being challenged by fellow Democrat Ingrid Anderson. Senator Mullet has remained a fierce champion of equity-based education proposals from Stand for Children, including our successful multi-year effort to pass a statewide Academic Acceleration law and remove historic barriers to dual credit classrooms. In total $2 million was spent on behalf of Anderson, while approximately $1.5 million was spent collectively on behalf of Sen. Mullet, making this the state's most expensive legislative race in history. 

Stand for Children was a member of the Committee for Proven Leadership that came together to support the independent effort to re-elect Senator Mullet. This included polling, a comprehensive digital and mail campaign, and on the ground voter contact efforts with physically distant canvassers. Our team also contributed a significant texting campaign effort to voters in the 5th district (see below for a sample text).

The last two ballot counts have trended in Senator Mullet’s favor. As of Thursday afternoon Mullet had pulled ahead by 18 votes. We anticipate this race being a nail-biter and quite likely going into recount.

  • *Mark Mullet (D) 48.99%
  • Ingrid Anderson (D) 48.97%

Legislative District 10 (Island County)
Stand Endorsed: Helen Price Johnson (D) for Senate
Stand Endorsed: Angie Homola (D) for Representative

This is a swing district in which Stand supported two Democratic newcomers for office. We created a digital advertising campaign for both endorsed candidates to support their races. The Senate seat is currently held by Senator Ron Muzzall who was appointed last year to fill the vacancy of retiring state Senator Barbara Bailey. Challenger HPJ was ahead after the first two nights of reporting however Muzzall took the lead last night.

  • Helen Price Johnson (D) 49.77%
  • Ron Muzzall (R) 50.14%

The Representative Pos. 1 seat is open as Rep. Norma Smith (R) is retiring. Gilday has gained some ground on Homola in the past two ballot drops..

  • Angie Homola (D) 50.15%
  • Greg Gilday (R) 49.65%

We're also proud to congratulate Senator Lynda Wilson, Senator Ann Rivers, Jamila Taylor, and April Berg as each candidate (some new, some returning) was able to claim victory in her race. While we were hopeful for candidate Chukundi Salisbury in South Seattle, we look forward to working with Kirsten Harris-Talley in the House of Representatives.

Legislative District 17 (Clark County) - Senate
Stand Endorsed:  Senator Lynda Wilson (R)

  • Daniel Smith (D) 46.19%
  • *Lynda Wilson (R) 53.68% (winner)

Legislative District 18 (Vancouver) - Senate
Stand Endorsed: Senator Ann Rivers (R)

  • Rick Bell (D) 41.37% 
  • *Ann Rivers (R) 55.54% (winner)

Legislative District 30 (Federal Way) - Representative
Stand Endorsed: Jamila Taylor (D)

  • Jamila Taylor (D) 57.88% (winner)
  • Martin A. Moore (R) 41.96%

Legislative District 37 (South Seattle) - Representative 
Stand Endorsed: Chukundi Salisbury (D)

  • Chukundi Salisbury (D) 32.92%
  • Kirsten Harris-Talley (D) 65.52% (winner)

Legislative District 44 (Snohomish) - Representative
Stand Endorsed: April Berg (D)

  • April Berg (D) 52.51% (winner)
  • Mark A. James (R) 47.42%

You can see all of our 2020 general election endorsements here.

Now that we’ve elected even more education champions, we can continue on the path to progress in ensuring every student has access to the education they deserve. This process has just begun. Our existing and newly elected lawmakers will need to hear from you! Regardless of who wins the national election, Washington state students will need your voice. 


Will you pledge to take action with us during the 2021 legislative session? Speaking up, sharing your story, and talking with legislators is what it will take to make progress towards building a better world together. We are proud to stand side by side with you as we stand up for students.

Standing with you,

Andrew, Darcelina, Katie, Shannon, Virginia 
Stand for Children Washington team

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