Celebrating 25 years in appellate law, Ken Masters has handled hundreds of civil appeals in all areas of the law. In 2017, he was honored to be listed in Washington Law & Politics’ “Top 10 Washington Super Lawyers” (2017). Elected the 1st District Governor on the WSBA Board of Governors for 2012 to 2015, Mr. Masters has chaired and presented at dozens of appellate practice seminars, has chaired numerous bar association committees, and actively pursues pro bono work. He served as President of the Washington Appellate Lawyers Association from 2007 to 2013, and is also listed in “Top 10 in Appellate Law” (2009), in “The Best Lawyers in America” (appeals), and in various publications’ lists of the Top 100 Washington lawyers, culminating in a Lifetime Achievement Award from America’s Top 100 Lawyers. He is a Fellow of the American Bar Foundation and of the American Academy of Appellate Lawyers.
Mr. Masters handled trial and appellate civil litigation for two years before becoming a judicial clerk for the Honorable Elaine Houghton, ret., on Division Two of the Washington State Court of Appeals. After his clerkship, Mr. Masters practiced trial and appellate civil litigation in Seattle for several years before joining his former law partner, Charlie Wiggins, on Bainbridge Island. Mr. Masters founded Masters Law Group (MLG) after Mr. Wiggins’ election to the Washington State Supreme Court.
Mr. Masters was born in Moses Lake, Washington, and then wandered to various places with his military family. He took his B.A. from Metropolitan State College in Denver, Colorado, and later returned to Washington to attend the University of Puget Sound (now Seattle University) School of Law, obtaining his J.D., cum laude. Mr. Masters received numerous scholastic honors, including Merit Scholar, Dean’s List, Lead Articles Editor on the law review, andAm. Jur. awards (for the highest grade) in Contracts, Civil Procedure, and Legal Writing II (Appellate Advocacy).
Mr. Masters has been very active in various bar association committees, sections, and pro bono efforts, previously serving as the WSBA Treasurer and Governor, and chairing the WSBA’s Rules & Procedures Committee (which oversees the court-rule-making process) and its Amicus Committee (overseeing appellate briefs filed on behalf of the Bar).Mr. Masters also chaired the King County Bar Association’s Appellate Section (serving as Section President in 2008-09) and its Amicus Committee and co-chaired its Judicial Screening Committee (rating candidates for trial and appellate judicial positions). He is a past co-director of the Freemont Free Legal Clinic, and is a member of Kitsap Legal Services, serving at its free legal clinic. He has also chaired and/or taught dozens of continuing legal education seminars on legal writing and appellate practice throughout Washington.
Mr. Masters is also active in the community, having served on the boards of several community organizations.
Ken is married to Kara Masters, who is of counsel to MLG, and who also clerked for several appellate court judges. They met in law school. Ken was a Teaching Assistant for Kara’s Constitutional Law class, but she married him anyway.
Prior to law school, Mr. Masters was a professional musician and instructor, recording, touring and teaching music for about ten years. He still plays jazz guitar and records with various groups as time permits. He is particularly gratified to have recently performed at the premier jazz festival in our region, the 2015 Earshot Jazz Festival.