Joseph F. Quinn, Attorney At Law

Personal Background

Joseph F. Quinn was born in Albany, New York, in 1946. He graduated from Union College in Schenectady, N.Y. in 1967. After marrying in 1968, he served as an officer in the U.S. Air Force for four years before moving to the Pacific Northwest to attend University of Puget Sound Law School.

Legal Education

Mr. Quinn graduated with distinction from UPS Law School in 1976, having served as Managing Editor of the Law Review.

Legal Experience

Mr. Quinn spent three years with Tacoma's largest law firm, Gordon, Thomas, Honeywell et al., where he was introduced to the land use practice, personal injury cases and the general practice of law. Between 1979 and 1983, he served as a Pierce County Deputy Prosecutor, advising various Pierce County departments on personnel and labor matters, civil service and litigation matters. During those years, he was involved in extensive and varied litigation, including challenges to the Lakewood-Parkland sewer project, a 190 Million dollar public works project. In 1983, Mr. Quinn reentered private practice, limited to municipal law and land use. He was a partner or shareholder at McCormick, Hoffman in Lakewood and then Vandeberg, Johnson & Gandara in Tacoma between 1984 and 1996, when he opened his own firm. Since January 1997, he has emphasized, almost exclusively, the representation of fire department clients such as fire districts and regional fire authorities. However, his extensive litigation and appellate experience, and his years spent as a commissioner of the Public Employment Relations Commission (appointed by Governor Booth Gardner, in 1986) is quite useful in this practice.

Bar Admissions

State of Washington since 1976
Federal District Court since 1976
9th Circuit Court of Appeals since 1975
United States Supreme Court since 1985

Representative Clients

Virtually all of the Pierce County fire districts as well as South King Fire and Rescue, Burien Fire, Vashon Island Fire & Rescue, Maple Valley Fire and Life Safety, King 10 (a partner in Eastside Fire & Rescue) and fire districts in Chelan, Clallam, Lewis, and Thurston counties. We also represent the Valley Regional Fire Authority in Auburn, the Riverside Fire Authority in Centralia, and the West Thurston Regional Fire Authority. We also advise Jefferson County 911, an emergency communications agency serving police and fire departments.

Cases of Note

In 1986, Mr. Quinn argued Brock v. Pierce County, 476 U.S. 253, before the Supreme Court of the United States. The matter involved a federal grant dispute arising under the Comprehensive Employment and Training Act.

He has also appeared before the Washington State Supreme Court and both federal and state appeals courts on numerous occasions: In re Recall of Pearsall-Stipek (three different cases); 141 Wn.2d 756 (2000); 136 Wn.2d 255 (1998) and 129 Wn.2d 399 (1996); In re Recall of Sandhaus, 134 Wn.2d 662 (1998); In re Recall of Lakewood City Council, 144 Wn.2d 583 (2001); Estate of Friedman v. Pierce County, 112 Wn.2d 68 (1989), 51 Wn.App. 176 (1988); Pierce County Sheriff v. Civil Service Commission, 98 Wn.2d 690 (1983)

The offices of
the Firehouse Lawyer
are located at:

Gig Harbor Fire and Medic One
10222 Bujacich Road NW
Gig HarborWA  98332

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