State Sen. Kirk Pearson, R-Monroe, to resign seat after being named to federal post

OLYMPIA, Wash. — State Sen. Kirk Pearson has been appointed to a position in the Trump administration.

Pearson has been named state director for rural development for the U.S. Department of Agriculture in Washington state.

A U.S. Department of Agriculture news release announcing the appointment says that the role involves working "to help improve the economy and quality of life in rural America."

Pearson starts Nov. 13 in the federal position, and will resign his 39th District Senate seat before taking the job. Pearson has served for 17 years in the Washington Legislature.

“What I loved most were the friendships I made and the opportunity to serve the people of the 39th District,” Pearson said. “I am looking forward to serving them in a greater capacity, as well as the people throughout Washington state and our great country.”

Pearson, chairman of the Senate Natural Resources and Parks Committee, was first elected to the state House of Representatives in 2000. He joined the state Senate following the 2012 election. His district covers rural portions of Snohomish, Skagit and King counties.

Senate Majority Leader Mark Schoesler, R- Ritzville, said, “While I am sad to see Senator Pearson leave us, I’m pleased that he will be leading the current administration’s efforts on rural development in Washington.

Pearson will be the second state senator to step down this year to work for the federal agency. Brian Dansel resigned from his seat earlier this year to become a special assistant to the U.S. secretary of agriculture in Washington, D.C. This week's news release by the agency also announced Dansel's appointment as state director for the Farm Service Agency.