In 2012, Bob Ferguson was elected to become Washington’s Attorney General. His work in the Attorney General’s office focuses on protecting consumers and senior citizens from fraud, safeguarding Washington communities, conserving the environment, and taking care of veterans. His experience and commitment to the community earned him reelection to the office in 2016.
Early Life and Education
Robert “Bob” Watson Ferguson was born on February 23, 1965. As a fourth-generation Washingtonian, Ferguson has long ties to the state. Ferguson’s father, Murray, worked for Boeing, and his mother, Betty, was a special education teacher. Ferguson grew up as one of seven children. Ferguson graduated from Bishop Blanchet High School and continued on to the University of Washington. After receiving his undergraduate degree, Ferguson spent a year serving with the Jesuit Volunteer Corps. Ferguson later attended New York University School of Law.
After law school, Ferguson moved to Spokane to clerk for Judge William Fremming Nielsen of the US District Court for the Eastern District of Washington until he was appointed as chief clerk to Judge Myron Bright of the US Court of Appeals, 8th Circuit. After serving as a clerk, Ferguson returned to Seattle to work as a litigator, where he represented small and large businesses, municipalities, and Washington State families. Ferguson’s legal work ranged from software piracy cases on behalf of Washington’s tech companies to providing pro bono legal assistance to non-profit organizations. After years of working as a litigator, Ferguson decided to run for the King County Council, and was elected in 2003. He served on the council for nearly a decade before running for Attorney General.
As Attorney General, Ferguson has been very involved in protecting the equal rights of Washingtonians. From April 2013 to November 2016, he defended a same-sex couple after the owner of a flower shop refused to provide services for their wedding. Ultimately, the Washington Supreme Court ruled unanimously in the couple’s (and Ferguson’s) favor. Ferguson has taken on large corporations to hold them accountable and protect Washingtonians from fraud. He has also worked to keep Washingtonians safe from gun violence by pushing legislation that would prevent the sale of assault weapons and high-capacity magazines in the state of Washington. More recently, Ferguson has been on the front lines of challenging the Trump Administration’s travel ban, working to protect the rights and interests of Washingtonians and Washington businesses.
Ferguson is an avid climber and hiker. He is also a world-class chess master and two-time Washington State Chess Champion. He and his wife Colleen raise their twins, Jack and Katie, in the Maple Leaf neighborhood of Seattle.