Kymberly Evanson, who currently serves as a law partner at Pacifica Law Group, has been tapped for the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington.
Evanson received a B.A. from Seattle University in 1999 and a J.D. from the Georgetown University Law Center in 2007. After graduating, Evanson clerked for Judge Emmett Sullivan on the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia before joining the Seattle office of JK&L Gates as an associate. Evanson later shifted to Pacifica Law Group and became a partner in 2011. She is still with the firm.
History of the Seat
Evanson has been nominated to replace Judge Ricardo Martinez on the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington. Martinez will take senior status upon confirmation of a successor.
Evanson started her legal career at the Seattle office of K&L Gates. Among her matters there, she represented AstenJohnson, Inc. against an employee suit alleging damages from asbestos exposure. See Coulter v. Asten Group, Inc., 230 P.3d 169 (Wash. App. 2009). She also worked on bankruptcy litigation. See, e.g., Sec. Investor Prot. Corp. v. Lehman Bros., 433 B.R. 127 (S.D.N.Y. Bankr. 2010).
Since 2011, Evanson has worked at Pacifica Law Group, where she defended Amazon against a defamation suit brought by James Parisi, who alleged that he was defamed in the publication of a book by Larry Sinclair, who had alleged that he had engaged in an affair with then-presidential candidate Barack Obama. See Parisi v. Sinclair, 806 F. Supp. 2d 93 (D.D.C. 2011).
Much of Evanson’s work at Pacifica has focused on municipal law. See, e.g., Elected Leaders, Activists File Lawsuit to Remove Tim Eyman’s I-1366 From 2015 Ballot, Newstex Blogs, Aug. 10, 2015. See also Lee v. State, 374 P.3d 157 (Wash. 2016). Notably, Evanson defended the Woodland Park Zoological Society against a lawsuit alleging that the housing of elephants at the Society violated animal cruelty laws. Sebek v. City of Seattle, 290 P.3d 159 (Wash. App. 2012). Evanson also represented a petitioner who sought to use public records requests to obtain zip code reports from Lyft. See Lyft, Inc. v. City of Seattle, 418 P.3d 102 (Wash. 2018).
In her pro bono matters, Evanson represented the American Civil Liberties Union of Washington in a suit against the Trump Administration’s foreign travel ban (colloquially called the “Muslim ban”). See Washington v. Trump, 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 16012 (W.D. Wash. Feb. 3, 2017).
As a law student in 2006, Evanson authored a paper on Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which bars employment discrimination. See Kymberly K. Evanson, Employment Law Chapter: Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, 7 Geo. J. Gender & L. 981 (2006). The piece is largely descriptive of the structure and functioning of employment suits under Title VII, rather than commenting or recommending changes in the law. See id.
Evanson has occasionally donated to political and judicial candidates, including Attorney General Bob Ferguson and Supreme Court Justices Steve Gonzalez and Mary Yu.
With a record of working on both commercial and pro bono litigation, Evanson presents a left-of-center record as an attorney that is consistent with her fellow Seattle based nominees. It remains to be seen if that record will pose her confirmation issues.