NORTHWEST LEGAL FOUNDATION

A NON-PROFIT TAX EXEMPT
PUBLIC INTEREST LAW FIRM
818 S. YAKIMA AVE., #200
TACOMA, WASHINGTON 98405
EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR: RICHARD SHEPARD

MISSION

The Northwest Legal Foundation is a non‑profit, tax exempt, public‑interest law firm dedicated to promoting social harmony and individual prosperity in the Pacific Northwest through education, volunteerism and the free‑enterprise system.

We support the proper and responsible exercise of government authority. We defend the individual liberties and freedoms guaranteed by our federal and state constitutions. We advocate individual responsibility, individual rights and the rule of law.

NLF OBJECTIVES

The NLF intends to:

  • Seek out and expose abuses of power by government agencies and officers.
  • Help educate and equip citizens and professionals with tools to protect private rights and property.
  • Litigate with common sense, honesty, integrity and fairness to protect and promote economic and civil rights, and to establish appropriate limits upon government power.
  • Participate with like‑minded individuals and groups to advocate the principles of classical‑liberal philosophy espoused by the founding fathers.

NWLF ACTIVITIES:

Amicus Curiae Briefs: During its 20+ year existence, the Northwest Legal Foundation has submitted or joined in Amicus Curiae briefs in several cases. Examples include: Clingman v. Beaver, 544 U.S. 581 (2005) (voter registration by party deemed a minimal burden on voters’ associational rights that helps preserve parties as separate interest groups); Dolan v. City of Tigard, 512 U.S. 374 (1994) (requiring “essential nexus” between permit conditions and probable impact of proposed real estate development); Richmond v. Thompson, 130 Wn.2d 368, 922 P.2d 1343 (1996) (First amendment petition clause affords protection equal to speech clause), R/L Associates, Inc. v. City of Seattle, 113 Wn.2d 402, 780 P.2d 838 (1989) (ordinance requiring tenant relocation assistance held illegal indirect tax on landlord).

Continuing Legal Education Seminar: On June 30, 2005, the Northwest Legal Foundation sponsored a continuing legal education seminar on election law in Seattle, Washington. Topics included: Introduction to Election Systems, Election Technologies and Mechanics, Update on HAVA and other Federal Election Laws, Update on Washington State Election Laws, Election Ethics, Political Parties and their Legal Role in Elections, Election Contests and Recalls, Restoring Voter Confidence in Elections.

Litigation funding: In the past several years the Northwest Legal Foundation has been privileged to help fund legal challenges to election laws that violate First and Fourteenth Amendment rights of political association, ballot access and campaign financing. These cases include: Democratic Party of Washington v. Reed, 343 F.3d 1198 (2004) (invalidating Washington State’s so-called “blanket” primary election system); Borders, et al., v King Co., et al., Chelan County Superior Court #05-2-00027-3 (challenge to the result of the 2004 Washington State gubernatorial race); and Washington State Grange v. Washington State Republican Party, 552 U.S. ___ ( 2008 ) (#06-713) (facial challenge to Washington’s newer “top two” primary election system).