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Olympia Correspondent, Northwest News Network

Austin Jenkins

Austin Jenkins is the Olympia correspondent for the Northwest News Network.

Since 2004, Austin has covered Northwest politics and public policy as well as the Washington state Legislature. He also host of TVW's Emmy-nominated public affairs program, Inside Olympia. Prior to joining the Northwest News Network, Austin worked as a television reporter in Seattle, Portland and Boise.

Austin’s reporting has been recognized with awards from the Association of Capitol Reporters and Editors, Public Radio News Directors Incorporated and the Society of Professional Journalists.


Austin is a graduate of Connecticut College in New London, Connecticut.

Contact Austin Jenkins

Recent Articles

local | Election 2016

Billions Of Dollars At Stake In Low-Profile Race For Washington State Treasurer

Northwest News Network | July 21, 2016 7 p.m.

Washington’s state treasurer is a low-profile job with high stakes. It involves managing billions of dollars and guarding the state’s creditworthiness.

local | Politics | News | Election 2016

Restoring Trust Is Theme In Washington State Auditor's Race

Northwest News Network | July 21, 2016 6:30 p.m.

Five candidates are running in the August 2 primary to replace embattled Washington State Auditor Troy Kelley — and restoring trust in the office is a recurring theme of the campaigns.

local | Environment | Election 2016

Fires, Landslides, Global Warming: The Issues In Washington's Lands Commissioner Race

Northwest News Network | July 20, 2016 3:47 p.m.

Historic forest fires. The Oso landslide. Global warming. These are among the issues in the race for Washington Commissioner of Public Lands.

local | Politics | News | Election 2016

Help! Who Are All These Candidates On My Washington Primary Ballot?

Northwest News Network | July 19, 2016 6:15 p.m.

Voters in Washington state have a political homework assignment that has nothing to do with the conventions — and it’s due August 2.

local | NW Life | News

After White Officer Shoots Black Brothers, Olympia Police Chief Works To Build Trust

Northwest News Network | July 15, 2016 8:45 p.m.

The police force in Washington's state capital is changing. Fourteen months ago a white police officer in Olympia shot two African-American brothers....

local | News

Carbon Cap Critics Protest, Fast On Washington State Capitol Steps

Northwest News Network | July 12, 2016 6:45 p.m.

A group of climate activists is fasting on the steps of the Washington state Capitol this week as part of a protest against Gov. Jay Inslee’s proposed cap on carbon emissions.

local | Politics | Business | Election | News | Election 2016

Washington Voters Likely To Decide On Paid Sick Leave, Minimum Wage Increase

Northwest News Network | July 6, 2016 6:45 a.m.

Washington voters will likely decide in November whether to raise the state minimum wage and require employers to provide paid sick leave.


No Wheelchair, No Justice Say Advocates For Disabled Inmates

Northwest News Network | June 22, 2016 9 a.m.

Life in prison is no picnic. But imagine being blind or deaf or in a wheelchair behind bars.

local | News | Business | Economy

Veteran-Owned Medical Marijuana Dispensary To Close June 30

Northwest News Network | June 21, 2016 10:15 a.m.

The end is near for a veteran-owned medical marijuana dispensary in downtown Olympia.

local | Politics | News | Election 2016

Gun Questionnaires Aim To Pin Washington State Candidates Down

Northwest News Network | June 20, 2016 6:15 p.m.

This year’s NRA questionnaire to Washington candidates includes questions about a ban on so-called assault weapons, limiting magazine capacity and guns on college campuses.

local | Nation | Election | News | Election 2016

Sanders Supporters Weigh 'Bernie Or Bust' Or Clinton At Washington Convention

Northwest News Network | June 17, 2016 5:02 p.m.

Bernie Sanders supporters are sounding a lukewarm note about Hillary Clinton as they convene in Tacoma this weekend for the state Democratic convention....

local | Election | Election 2016

Washington Democrats Aim To Avoid Nevada-Like Meltdown At State Convention

Northwest News Network | June 16, 2016 6:15 p.m.

Washington state Democrats are confident they will avoid a Nevada-like meltdown at their state convention this weekend.

local | News

Pride Flag Raised, Then Lowered To Half-Staff At Washington State Capitol

Northwest News Network | June 15, 2016 5:43 p.m.

 The rainbow pride flag was raised over the Washington state Capitol Wednesday. It was then immediately lowered to half-staff in honor of the victims of last weekend’s mass shooting in Orlando.


After A 9.0 Earthquake And Tsunami, Rescue Means Parachutes And MASH Tents

Northwest News Network | June 10, 2016 5:15 p.m.

In preparation for a subduction zone earthquake, which would take out roads and bridges, emergency responders in Washington are training to dropping supplies and soldiers into strategic locations by parachute.

local | News | Election 2016

In A Trump Year, Candidates Look For Ways To Shake Things Up

Northwest News Network | June 9, 2016 7:30 p.m.

"Rubber chicken dinners" aren't going to cut it in this election season, so candidates are jumping to extremes by jumping out of planes.


Planes And Parachutes Might Be Best Bet After 9.0 Earthquake

Northwest News Network | June 9, 2016 5:45 p.m.

Planes and parachutes might be the best bet for getting supplies to cut-off areas in the event of a subduction zone earthquake. National Guard pilots and paratroopers practiced supply drops and parachute jumps Thursday.

local | News | Oil Trains In The Northwest

Gov. Inslee Presses Railroad Chiefs On Oil Train Safety

Northwest News Network | June 8, 2016 8 p.m.

Washington Gov. Jay Inslee wants oil trains to slow down and safety improvements to speed up.

local | Environment | News | Oil Trains In The Northwest

Washington Ecology Director: Region 'Falling Short' On Oil Spill Response

Northwest News Network | June 6, 2016 3:30 p.m.

Friday’s oil train derailment and fire comes as Washington state prepares to put new oil shipment safety rules into effect. In fact, the derailment in the Columbia Gorge happened just as the first public hearing on those rules was wrapping up in Vancouver, Washington.

local | Health | News

Washington's Troubled Western State Hospital Gets Another Chance At Turnaround

Northwest News Network | June 3, 2016 7:15 p.m.

Washington’s troubled Western State Hospital won’t lose nearly $50 million in federal funding — for now.

local | News

Feds Plan To Retry Troy Kelley On Deadlocked Counts

Northwest News Network | May 31, 2016 6:45 p.m.

Federal prosecutors say they intend to retry Washington State Auditor Troy Kelley after his first trial ended in April with the jury voting to acquit on one count and deadlocked on 14 others.