Bellevue, Washington , United States
|| June 03, 1959
Dec 01, 2012 12:13pm
Conservative - Pro-Choice -
|Info||John Carlson is one of Washington State's best known media personalities. His daily insight and humorous take on current events have reflected his diversified background in the news media, policy research and politics. |
John hosted a daily drive-time radio talk program on Seattle's KVI-AM up until leaving in March 2000 to run for governor. The National Association of Radio Talk Show Hosts named him one of the country's 100 most influential radio personalities. Newsweek magazine named him "one of Seattle's movers and shakers". And he continues to write a weekly syndicated newspaper column.
From 1986 to 1993, he was a television news commentator on KIRO-TV, Seattle's CBS affiliate. His writings have also appeared in The Washington Post and The Wall Street Journal.
John has led three statewide initiative campaigns. Last year he chaired the Initiative 200 campaign. Despite being outspent more than 4-1, the initiative, which bans government discrimination and preferences in hiring, contracting and college admissions, won handily at the polls, 58% - 42%. Washington joins California as the second state in the nation to outlaw preferences, set-asides, and quotas.
In 1992 John originated the . Three Strikes, You're Out. anti-crime concept, coined the popular term, and headed the statewide drive to pass it as an initiative in 1993, where it won with 76% of the vote.
The proposal, which sentences three-time violent felons to prison for life, soon spread to other states, including California in 1994. Violent crime has dropped in Washington State more than 20% since its passage.
In 1995, John chaired the campaign for another anti-crime initiative, 'Hard Time for Armed Crime'. The measure, which passed into law in '96, hits armed felons with longer sentences for illegally using or possessing firearms or other deadly weapons.
In 1985 John co-founded the Washington Institute Foundation, a free market research center in Seattle, and served as its president until 1994. The Institute has been called "the finest state-based think-tank in the country" by William Bennett. It has drawn praise from policy makers at all levels in both parties, including Presidents Reagan and Bush. John continues to serve on its Board of Directors.
John Carlson was born in 1959 and grew up in West Seattle. He attended the University of Washington, from which he graduated with honors in 1981. He and his wife Lisa have two sons, John Matthew, 4 and Drew Robert, 2. They attend St. Jude's Parish in Redmond, WA.
John's hobbies include watching films and riding Harley- Davidsons. He has served on the boards of a variety of charitable and civic organizations including the Make- A-Wish Foundation, the State Advisory Board of the U.S. Civil Rights Commission, Swedish Hospital's Planned Giving Advisory Board, the University of Washington Young Alumni Board, and many others.
In December, 1999, John was named one of the UW's 100 most influential graduates of the century.