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Press Release

Tuesday, June 14

AWB Announces 2016 Gubernatorial Debate

Business group to host candidates for Aug. 17 event in Spokane

OLYMPIA — The Association of Washington Business announced today that it will host a debate between the presumed gubernatorial candidates, Gov. Jay Inslee (D) and Republican challenger Bill Bryant, pending the outcome of the Aug. 2 primary election. The debate, held in partnership with Greater Spokane Incorporated and the Community Colleges of Spokane, will take place Aug. 17 in Spokane.

AWB, the state’s oldest and largest business organization, has a long history of hosting gubernatorial debates dating to 1992 when candidates Mike Lowry (D) and Ken Eikenberry (R) debated during the association’s annual Policy Summit. AWB has hosted a gubernatorial every four years since then, including 2012 when then-U.S. Rep. Inslee debated Washington State Attorney General Rob McKenna (R) at the historic Bing Crosby Theater in Spokane.

“We consider it a privilege and honor to host these important debates,” said AWB President Kris Johnson. “There are so many significant issues facing our state right now, everything from education and climate policy to trade and tax policy. We look forward to bringing together the candidates for an exchange of ideas about how best to lead our state forward.”

About the Association of Washington Business
Formed in 1904, the Association of Washington Business is Washington’s oldest and largest statewide business association, and includes nearly 8,000 members representing 700,000 employees. AWB serves as both the state’s chamber of commerce and the manufacturing and technology association. While its membership includes major employers like Boeing, Microsoft and Weyerhaeuser, 90 percent of AWB members employ fewer than 100 people. More than half of AWB’s members employ fewer than 10. For more about AWB, visit

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