Former Kirkland resident hopes to unseat congressional incumbent
By RAECHEL DAWSON
Kirkland Reporter Reporter
August 30, 2012 · 11:52 AM
As a film producer and director Rich Cowan has always been behind the camera. As a candidate for U.S. Congress from Washington’s 5th District, he hopes to take center stage.
“I have a background and passion for small businesses,” Cowan said. His biggest issue will be to focus on family wage jobs.
Cowan said he will bring a new perspective to the 5th District, which covers an area from Canada to Idaho and Oregon.
“When people are working, it solves a lot of other problems,” he said.
The former Kirkland resident and Juanita High School graduate will face 8-year-incumbent Republican Cathy McMorris Rodgers in the November general election. McMorris Rodgers is the fifth-highest-ranking Republican in the House of Representatives and is running for her fifth term as well. This will be Cowan’s first time running.
Cowan said that his opponent is a “career politician,” saying his experience in a grassroots company could give him an advantage.
The entrepreneur started a film production company in 1990 called North by Northwest Productions. Now, his business employs 40 full-time workers and has produced 45 feature length films. His company expanded to five other divisions that produce TV commercials, industrial videos, documentaries and websites.
Cowan and state Sen. Lisa Brown (D-Spokane) crafted Senate Bill 5539 this past winter, which was signed to law by Gov. Chris Gregoire. The law provides well-paying jobs to Eastern Washington by renewing Washington State’s incentive program, which allows film production companies to attract out of state investors.
Cowan first became interested in TV and film production when he attended Juanita High School in the 1970s.
“I have so many memories of Juanita,” Cowan said. “I made a lot of friends there. It was a time where you could be yourself before college.”
It was at Juanita High where Cowan video taped high school sports for the high school’s “Juanita TV News” show. And it was during high school when he got the chance to help direct TV at King 5.
Cowan played basketball, tennis, and was involved with the German exchange student program in addition to attaining his pilot’s license on the side.
And is now a potential congressman at age 56.
“The reason I jumped into this is because I’m getting more and more dissatisfied with the state of our congress,” Cowan said. “Things are not getting done.”
Cowan described himself as a moderate Democrat and said his goal for Congress is to “come together as a group.”
He believes many congress members are consumed with their political party instead of focusing on the people of this country.
“I look forward to connecting with workers, families, businesses small and large and anyone who is interested in changing the way Congress does business,” Cowan said in a March letter to constituents.
To learn more about Cowan, visit richcowanforcongress.com.
Contact Kirkland Reporter Reporter Raechel Dawson at email@example.com or 425-822-9166 X5052.