Anne Levinson, Chair
Commissioner Levinson has served as a judge, as the Chair of the state's Utilities & Transportation Commission, and in several roles for the City of Seattle, including Legal Counsel, Chief of Staff and Deputy Mayor for Mayor Norm Rice. Since retiring from the bench, she has consulted for governments and courts on system reform, and has provided review and oversight of administrative police misconduct investigations. In 2016, she co-chaired the State’s Blue Ribbon Commission on the Delivery of Services to Children & Families. Commissioner Levinson has served on the boards of directors and advisory boards for many charitable organizations, including the founding boards for the Seattle Girls' School, the Privacy Fund and the Center for Children & Youth Justice. She has chaired or been an advisor to many local and state ballot measure campaigns. She is the recipient of civic awards from the Urban League, Lambda Legal, Washington Women Lawyers, City Club, the Northwest Asian Weekly, QLaw, and the Greater Seattle Business Association. She resides in Seattle.
Jack Johnson, Vice-Chair
Commissioner Johnson worked as a public attorney for 34 years, including roughly a decade each representing King County, the City of Seattle, and the University of Washington. In addition to advising leadership at those agencies, he worked directly with laws governing public records, public meetings, government contracts, ethics laws, and personnel regulations, and has provided training on those subjects. Commissioner Johnson received his B.A. in Communications from the University of Washington and his J.D. from the UW School of Law. Since retiring from the UW in 2014, he has been of counsel to the law firm of Hillis, Clark, Martin and Peterson. Commissioner Johnson has served as a volunteer for a variety of charitable organizations in Kitsap County and in the developing world, with a particular emphasis on building housing through Habitat for Humanity. He was born in Kitsap County and resides on Bainbridge Island with his wife, Pamela. They have two grown daughters who live in Seattle.
David Ammons, Member
Commissioner Ammons retired in 2017 after a long career in journalism and state government. He was political writer and columnist for The Associated Press for 38 years, hosted “Inside Olympia” on TVW, and served as communications director and senior policy adviser for the Office of Secretary of State for more than eight years. He writes, lectures and does public speaking, and advocates for civics, civility and civic engagement.
Commissioner Ammons is involved with many state and local charitable organizations. He is a board member for the Washington State Parks Foundation and was a longtime trustee for the Washington State Historical Society and president of the area mental health board. He is a leader in the Presbyterian Church. He is a journalism and political science graduate of the University of Washington, lives in Olympia and has two adult children, Jennifer and Jonathan.
William Downing, Member
Commissioner Downing retired from his 40-year public service career in early 2017. Following 12 years in the office of Prosecuting Attorney Norm Maleng, he served for 28 years as Judge of the King County Superior Court. During this time, he worked to enhance public understanding of the law as longtime Chair of the Washington Pattern Jury Instructions Committee and the Bench-Bar-Press Liaison Committee. He also has written numerous high school mock trial cases for the YMCA as well as op-ed pieces and book reviews focusing on legal issues. Downing has been named a “Distinguished Alumnus” of the University of Washington Law School and has received the Williams Nevins and Robert Utter Awards for promoting ethical and democratic values. In 2018, the Council on Public Legal Education presented him with its “Flame of Democracy Award.” He is currently doing part-time work as a mediator and arbitrator with JAMS. He and his wife Laura reside in Seattle and have an adult son Sam.
Peter Lavallee, Executive Director
Executive Director Peter Lavallee joined the PDC in June 2017. He previously was Communications Director for the Washington State Attorney General’s Office. In addition to managing the Public Affairs Unit, Peter held leadership roles with service on the Core Leadership Team and as co-chair of the Operations Committee. Prior to the AGO, Peter was Communications Director at the Department of Natural Resources. Lavallee also has worked as an investment banker in New York City. He spent several years at Merrill Lynch, where he advised clients on transactions totaling several billion dollars, rising to be a Vice President in the Mergers & Acquisition group. A practicing attorney, Lavallee served as general counsel of a NASDAQ-listed technology company. He also worked in private practice, including providing legal advice to political campaigns, as well as clerking for the chief justice of the New Hampshire Supreme Court. In the 1990s, as Administrator of the Clinton Legal Expense Trust, Lavallee oversaw the nonpartisan legal defense fund for the President of the United States. Peter received his MBA from the Yale School of Management, his JD from Tulane Law School and his BA from Columbia University.