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Longtime assessor-treasurer staffer, Billie O’Brien, will run for the top job against her boss and others

Post by Peter Callaghan / The News Tribune on April 20, 2012 at 9:19 am |
April 20, 2012 12:47 pm

The already crowded field of candidates for Pierce County Assessor-Treasurer got a bit more crowded.

Billie O’Brien, the administrative manager of the assessor-treasurer’s office, declared her candidacy today, making her the fifth announced candidate. If her current boss, Dale Washam, seeks a second term as is expected, there will be six candidates. The top-two vote-getters in the August 7 primary will face off in November.

O’Brien has worked in the agency that assesses the value of county property for taxation purposes for 21 years.

Billie O'Brien

O’Brien said her first job was in the land segregation department. After passing the state exam to become an accredited appraiser, she worked as a residential appraiser for over 10 years. She worked both in the field on appraisals and as a supervisor before becoming administrative manager a job that saw her managing all the property tax and administrative functions of the office for more than nine years.

O’Brien is a member of the International Association of Assessing Officers and past president and secretary-treasurer of the West Puget Sound Chapter where she still serves as a standing member of the executive board.

O’Brien says she will run as the candidate with actual knowledge and experience in the assessor-treasurer’s office.

“The office of Assessor-Treasurer demands broad-based, experienced leadership and is not the place for on the job training. I believe it is time the residents of Pierce County were given the option to choose someone with the practical experience that will provide common sense leadership to this office,” she said.

The other announced candidates are Pierce County Councilman Tim Farrell, former Tacoma city councilmen Spiro Manthou and Mike Lonergan and political newcomer David Gommenginger.

Here is O’Brien’s announcement

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

BILLIE O’BRIEN ANNOUNCES CANDIDACY FOR ASSESSOR-TREASURER

Email: billie@obrienforassessor-treasurer.com

Tacoma, WA April 19 , 2012 – Billie O’Brien, Administrative Officer of the Pierce County Assessor-
Treasurer’s Office, announced today that she is a candidate for the position of Assessor-Treasurer. Ms.
O’Brien is accredited in the State of Washington to perform assessment appraisals and is a member of
the International Association of Assessing Officers.

“The office of Assessor-Treasurer demands broad-based, experienced leadership and is not the place
for on the job training. I believe it is time the residents of Pierce County were given the option
to choose someone with the practical experience that will provide common sense leadership to
this office. My 21 years in the office as an appraiser, supervisor and manager makes me the most
qualified candidate for Assessor-Treasurer. I understand the complexities of both the assessment and
tax administration processes and I am well prepared to immediately step in and begin serving the
taxpayers of Pierce County as Assessor-Treasurer.

O’Brien pledges to create an open and professional environment for staff and property owners. She
will work in the best interest of all Pierce County residents and ensure fair, accurate, and uniform
assessments.

O’Brien is committed to increasing public awareness. She will make herself and her staff available
and accountable to the public. “I believe that property owners deserve to talk with knowledgeable
staff when they have questions, issues or concerns. It is our responsibility to help property owners
understand their property valuations and taxes.”

O’Brien began her 21 year career in the Assessor-Treasurer’s office in the land segregation
department. After passing the State exam to become an accredited appraiser, she worked as a
residential appraiser for over 10 years, both in the field and as Appraisal Supervisor prior to assuming
her present position. As Administrative Manager, O’Brien has managed all the property tax and
administrative functions of the Assessor-Treasurer’s office for 9+ years. She is a member of the
International Association of Assessing Officers and Past President and Secretary-Treasurer of the local
West Puget Sound Chapter where she still serves as a standing member of the Executive Board.

A graduate of Mt. Tahoma High School, O’Brien is a lifelong resident of Pierce County and resides in the
Summit area. She is married with 2 sons and a new granddaughter.

Common Sense Leadership with Experience Where It Counts

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