Ellen Craswell

Ellen Craswell
Ellen Craswell (Republican) represented [the 23rd] district of Kitsap County in the State Senate. First elected in 1976, she served two terms in the House before her election to the Senate in 1980.

Born 1932, in Seattle, Craswell ... live[d] in Bremerton. A graduate of the University of Washington's Medical Technology program, she has been employed in Speech Therapy and Medical Technology. A businesswoman as well, Craswell was the owner-operator of a small art gallery.

Involved in her husband's two attempts for a House seat, Craswell decided to replace him when he chose to drop the second campaign. Making use of the "housewife image," Craswell used a sponge as one of her campaign trademarks along with the theme "Let's clean house!" Among the issues Craswell advocated were full state funding of public schools and tax limitation.

As co-chair of the important Revenue and Taxation Committee, Representative Craswell was not eager to move to the Senate, but so many important bills had died there she decided it was time to help make a change.

Reflecting on her role as a legislator, Senator Craswell says she [sought] to uphold a philosophy of less government and more individual responsiblity, while setting a sound fiscal policy for the state. She and her husband, Bruce, have four grown children.

Craswell ran for Washington State Governor in 1996, but lost to Gary Locke by 355,954 votes.

--Political Pioneers, The Women Lawmakers