SOUTH BEND — The Pacific County Board of Commissioners unanimously appointed Benjamin Haslam as Pacific County Prosecutor during a board meeting Tuesday, Aug. 11.
Haslam will replace Mark McClain, whose last day was Aug. 3. McClain resigned in July citing “personal and professional reasons.”
Haslam was the acting prosecutor after McClain’s last day while commissioners reviewed applicants for a permanent appointment. Haslam and Eric Weston applied for the position. Weston previously challenged McClain in the 2018 prosecutor’s race.
The board called both candidates excellent, but did not go into details about why Haslam beat out Weston for the position. Haslam thanked the board for allowing him to continue leading the office.
To secure the position, Haslam will need to win a special election in 2021 and then win again in 2022 when McClain’s term was set to end.
Haslam became chief deputy prosecutor and deputy coroner for the prosecutor’s office in October 2018. Before that he was executive director for Snohomish County Legal Services, which was a non-profit legal aid agency. He previously worked as a staff attorney for the agency.
In November 2019, Haslam and his wife helped to begin a legal advice clinic in Pacific County. The clinic gives low-income people the chance to speak with an attorney about civil issues, such as family law, housing and employment. To establish the clinic, the duo partnered with Pacific County Superior Court Judge Donald Richter and Rachael Langen Lundmark, executive director for Thurston County Volunteer Legal Services.
Haslam was in private practice from 2008 to 2013, first in his own practice and then working for Tsai Law Company in Seattle.
He clerked for Snohomish County Superior Court Judge James H. Allendoerfer from 2006 to 2008. He recieved his law degree from Santa Clara University School of Law in 2005 and graduated from the University of Washington with a Bachelor of Arts degree in 2001.
Born in South London, England, Haslam immigrated to the U.S. at the age of 12.