President Obama named former Washington Gov. Gary Locke as his nominee for commerce secretary Wednesday.
Locke, 57, was the country’s first Chinese-American governor, elected to lead Washington in 1996 and re-elected in 2000.
Before becoming governor, he served five terms in the Washington state House of Representatives and one term as King County executive. He was chairman of the House Appropriations Committee from 1989 to 1994.
A lawyer, Locke is in private practice with Davis Wright Tremaine in the national firm’s Seattle, Washington, office.
Locke would be Obama’s third choice to be commerce secretary. His most recent pick, Republican Sen. Judd Gregg of New Hampshire, cited "irresolvable conflicts" with the administration over the economic recovery bill when he withdrew his name from consideration February 12.