Kara Masters: Resume

 20160720 - KRM RESUME - WEBSITE - R1-1


Of Counsel/Attorney, Masters Law Group, PLLC, Bainbridge Island, WA (March 2014-present)
Civil appeals, insurance coverage, commercial contracts and risk management, and employment practice in Washington, Idaho, Oregon and Alaska.
Of Counsel/Attorney, Jerry Moberg & Associates, Ephrata, WA (March 2014-present)
Civil litigation in state and federal courts in Washington, Idaho, Oregon and Alaska.  Practice areas include construction and commercial litigation, insurance coverage and defense litigation and employment law.
Attorney/Shareholder, Skellenger Bender, PS, Seattle WA (May 2003-February 2014)
Civil litigation and appeals in state and federal courts in Washington, Idaho, Oregon and Alaska.  Practice areas included construction and design professional representation, insurance coverage and defense, general commercial litigation, environmental law and employment law.  Executive Committee, Secretary/Human Resources Partner (2010-2014); Associate (2003-2005).
Associate Attorney, Lybeck Murphy, LLP, Mercer Island, WA (January 2000-April 2003)
Civil litigation and appeals in state and federal courts in Washington and Oregon.  Practice areas included insurance coverage and defense, construction/products liability, employment law, personal injury, medical malpractice defense, environmental remediation, premises liability, and contract disputes.
Associate Attorney, Hoffman, Hart & Wagner, LLP, Kirkland, WA (September 1998-December 1999)
General civil litigation.  Practice areas included insurance coverage and defense, medical malpractice defense, environmental remediation litigation, and employer-side employment law.
Judicial Clerk, Washington State Court of Appeals, Seattle & Tacoma, WA
The Honorable Anne L. Ellington (ret.), Division I (August 1997-August 1998)
The Honorable William W. Baker (ret.), Division I (August 1996-August 1997)
The Honorable Elaine M. Houghton (ret.), Division II (August 1995-August 1996)
Associate Attorney, Broihier & Wotipka (January 1995-July 1995)
General civil litigation and bankruptcy.  Practice areas included employment discrimination, real estate, administrative law and Chapter 7 & 13 bankruptcy practice.
Contract Attorney, Various Firms, Tacoma, WA (1994)
Civil litigation.  Practice areas included insurance defense and plaintiff-side products liability.
Law Clerk I & II, Attorney General of Washington, Olympia, WA (May 1992-December 1993)
Rule 9 Intern for litigation sections of Revenue and Torts Divisions.  Practice areas included public utility taxation, state tort claims defense and employment discrimination.


Admissions to Practice:

  • Washington (1993)
  • U.S. District Court, WDWA (1995)
  • U.S. District Court, EDWA (2000)
  • Idaho (2005)
  • U.S. District Court, District of Idaho (2005)
  • Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals (2003)
  • U.S. Supreme Court (2010)
  • Oregon (2013)
  • Alaska (2013)



  • Washington State Bar Association (1993-present): Construction Law Section, Labor & Employment Section, Litigation Section, YLD Bono Committee (1994-1999)
  • Idaho State Bar Association (2005-present)
  • Oregon State Bar Association (2013-present)
  • Alaska State Bar Association (2013-present): Appellate Section
  • King County Bar Association (1998-present): Employment Section
  • Kitsap County Bar Association (2014-present)
  • Tacoma-Pierce County Bar Association (1993-1996)
  • Federal Bar Association (1995-present)
  • American Bar Association (2006-present): Forum on the Construction Industry; Tort Trial & Insurance Practice Section (Committees: Insurance Coverage Litigation, Trial Techniques, Professional Liability)
  • Washington Women Lawyers (1995-present)
  • Defense Research Institute (2010-present): Lawyers’ Professionalism & Ethics Committee
  • Washington Defense Trial Lawyers (2015-present): Insurance Section


Professional Activities:

  • Professional Liability Underwriting Society (PLUS) (2006-present): PLUS NW Steering Committee: Chair/Co Chair (2006-2015), Secretary (2009-2012)
  • American Council of Engineering Companies (ACEC-National & ACEC-WA) (2003-2014)
  • Northwest Environmental Business Council (NEBC) (2004-2014)
  • King County Mandatory Arbitration Panel (2012-2014)


Trustee, Legal Foundation of Washington, appointed by the WA Supreme Court to serve two consecutive two-year terms on the Board of Trustees, which governs the Foundation’s work to ensure equal justice for low-income persons by funding programs and supporting policies and initiatives that enable the poor and the most vulnerable to overcome barriers in the civil justice system (2014-present), including as Vice President and member of the Executive, Grants (Chair), Goldmark Award Luncheon and Ad Hoc Strategic Planning and MOA Committees (2016); as Secretary and member of the Executive, Grants, Finance, Goldmark Award Luncheon and Ad Hoc Merger Committees (2015); and as member of the Goldmark Award Luncheon, Goldmark Internship, Audit and Ad Hoc ED Review Committees (2014).
Board Member, Coalition Ending Gender Based Violence (formerly the King County Coalition Against Domestic Violence), serves on Board of Directors for local domestic violence agency providing emergency shelter, transitional housing & community programs (2013-present), including as Chair (2016), Co-Chair (2015), Secretary (2014) and member of the Ad Hoc Strategic Plan Implementation (2014-2015), Fund Development (2013-present), and Executive (2014-present) Committees. Pro Bono Attorney, Immigrant Families Advocacy Project (Northwest Immigrant Rights Project and University of Washington School of Law), legal representation/oversight of law students representing immigrant survivors of crime and domestic violence, who are eligible to obtain lawful immigration status in the U.S (2012-present).
Committee Member, Seattle University School of Law, Law Alumni Board, Strategic Planning Committee (2012-2014).
Judge, Center for Civic Education, We the People: the Citizen & the Constitution, serves as judge for Washington State Finals Competitions of high school congressional hearing presentations (2006-present).
Board Member & Volunteer, New Beginnings, served on Board of Directors for local Domestic Violence agency providing Emergency Shelter, Transitional Housing & Community Programs (2003-2009), including as Board President (2007 & 2008), Vice President (2006), Development Chair (2004-2007), 30th Anniversary Gala Co-Chair (2006), and on the Development Committee (2003-2009); worked as volunteer in the emergency shelter (1999-2001).
Judge, Seattle University & University of Washington Schools of Law, served as judge for appellate argument courses and competitions (1998-2014).
Pro Bono Attorney, PROBar, Harlingen, TX, provided legal representation to political asylum applicants from Guatemala and Cuba in administrative hearings and on appeal (1994-1995).


University of Puget Sound (now Seattle University) School of Law, Seattle, WA
Juris Doctor, 1993
University of Texas, Arlington, TX
Bachelor of Arts in English, 1998


Moderator, PLUS Foundation/Women’s Leadership Network – Chris Romm, Leading from Where You Are (July 31, 2014).
Moderator, PLUS NW – ACA & Health Exchanges: The Changing Landscape of Health Care & What it Means to Healthcare Professional Liability – CE/CLE (April 17, 2014).
Presenter, WDTL Professional Liability Section Lunch – 2013 Professional Liability Update-Carrier/Claims Perspectives (September 18, 2013).
Facilitator, ACEC-Washington/Oregon Fall Conference – Breakfast Roundtables: Indemnity and Contract Risk Management Best Practices (September 14, 2013).
Moderator, PLUS NW/IIAKBC – Are you in a Cloud of Cyber Confusions? Making sense of Cyber Privacy Liability, Cyber Network Security Exposures, Cyber Crime Exposures, Electronic Funds Transfer Fraud and my Bank, and Cyber Extortion – Yikes! Can someone help me understand it all and explain it to my clients? – Cyber Coverage Update, CE (November 29, 2012).
Presenter, 2012 Washington Insurance Law Update, Client seminar (November 13, 2012).
Co-author, A-E-C Daubert Case Index, presented at ACEC-National Conference, Legal Counsel Forum, Boca Raton, FL (October 15, 2012) (with P. Douglas Folk, Folk & Associates).
Co-presenter, ACEC-Washington Business Practice Breakfast – Money & Time: Avoiding Wage & Hour Problems with your Staff (September 5, 2012).
Co-presenter, Hall & Company AE Resource Webinar – Protecting Your Fees: Managing Professional Fees, Risk Management Webinar (August 21, 2012).
Co-author, Newsletter: Seattle Sick/Safe Leave Ordinance Becomes Effective September 1, 2012 – Are You Ready? (August 2012)
Co-moderator, PLUS NW — The AAA Update: Attorneys, Accountants & Adjustors — E&O Coverage Update, CE (May 3, 2012).
Co-author, Newsletter: Defeating Breach of Fiduciary Duty Claims Against Design Professionals (September 2009) Moderator, PLUS NW — Hot Topics in E&O Coverage – E&O Coverage Update, CE (December 2008).
Co-author/presenter, WSBA 14th Annual Construction Law Update, Environmental Considerations (September 2007).
Co-author, Washington Health Law Manual, Third Edition, Chapter 26–Employment Issues (January 2007).
Co-author, Title VII Update, Sterling Educational Services, Employment Law CLE (August 2003).


State of Washington, Department of Transportation v. James River Insurance Company, 176 Wn.2d 390, 292 P.3d 118 (January 17, 2013), reconsideration denied (March 14, 2013)
Braswell v. Shoreline Fire Department and Gary Somers, M.D., 622 F.3d 1099 (9th Cir. 2010)

  • 2009 WL 3427350 (2009) – Order Grant MSJ for Shoreline/Somers & Denying MSJ for Braswell
  • 2012 WL 1857858 (2012) – Order Granting MSJ for Somers on Qualified Immunity (appeal dismissed)

In re University Place/Idaho Water Center Project (The University of Idaho Foundation, Inc. v. Civic Partners, Inc. et al.), 146 Idaho 527, 199 P.3d 102 (2008)
Koop v. Lehman, 105 Fed.Appx. 935 (2004)
Miller v. Jacoby, 145 Wn. 2d 65, 33 P.3d 68 (2001)