From The Olympian:
The Thurston County commission unanimously chose state Rep. Gary Alexander on Tuesday to replace newly elected Secretary of State Kim Wyman as county auditor.
The Olympia Republican will serve as auditor until the November election. Then, he will have to run to retain the seat. He said if he is elected in November, he will consider resigning from the state Legislature.
Alexander began working in the Auditor’s Office during Sam Reed’s final six months of service 12½ years ago.
Alexander was selected over Olympia real estate agent Carol Person, the Thurston County Republicans’ top choice. The commission chose from a field of Republicans because Wyman is a Republican.
The third candidate, Yelm Mayor Ron Harding, pulled out of the running Monday, citing the desire to focus on “several high impact issues still unresolved” in Yelm, according to a letter addressed to the commissioners
I feel that even though becoming the next auditor would be a great honor, leaving my responsibilities as mayor at such a critical time would not be honorable,” Harding said in the letter, citing the city’s various road projects, water rights and the city’s park master plan.
Commissioners said they chose Alexander for his experience working in the Auditor’s Office and time as a legislator.
“Our job is to find a person we feel has the best qualifications and can hit the ground running,” said Commissioner Cathy Wolfe.
Alexander is looking to a four- or five-year plan as auditor, hoping to continue to move the Auditor’s Office to paperless filing and streamline the county’s election process.