Office of the Public Advocate

What is the Snohomish County Public Advocate's Office?


The Office of the Public Advocate assists in finding resolutions to public complaints and concerns involving Snohomish County government. This office is an independent entity and serves as an impartial intermediary between the citizen and the county government.

The Public Advocate can conduct independent investigations into complaints; but does not determine outcome or overturn decisions. Its purpose/focus is to assist in finding a transparent and ethical solution for all parties involved.
Public Advocate quote

When do I contact the Public Advocate’s Office?


It is important to first investigate all other alternatives before contacting the Public Advocate. This office is a last resource for those who need help resolving complaints. If you have not done so before contacting the Public Advocate, you may be redirected to the appropriate department/division.

How can the Office of the Public Advocate help me?


The Office of the Public Advocate is a free public service dedicated to finding resolution in conflicts with Snohomish County government agencies in a fair and impartial way. Although the Public Advocate cannot determine outcome or overturn decisions within Snohomish County government, they can work with departments and division management to determine if a possible alternative solution can be met.

The Public Advocate is a knowledgeable resource for citizens and can find the appropriate contact and resources within Snohomish County.

Can I remain anonymous?


Anyone utilizing the Office of the Public Advocate can remain anonymous if they contact the Public Advocate via phone or in person. Note that should you send an email or any printed item in contacting the Office of the Public Advocate, this is subject to the Public Records Act (Chapter 42.56 RCW) which can be released to a public request.

Who is the Snohomish County Public Advocate?


Jill McKinnie is the Snohomish County Public Advocate. Her role is keeping Snohomish County government transparent for its citizens. McKinnie previously handled constituent service and outreach for members of the Washington congressional delegation for more than 30 years.

How do I contact the Public Advocate?


You may contact the Public Advocate Jill McKinnie by calling, emailing or visiting her in her office. An online contact form is also available.