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About me

Gary was born and raised in Seattle, Washington. He married another Seattle native, Kaaren and together they raised their four children in the greater Seattle area. 

He started his legal career in the King County Prosecutor’s office working in the civil divisioon. After two years practicing with the County, Gary signed-on with Safeco Insurance Company working in their legal department. 

He left Safeco after two years to start his own private practice. Through the years, Gary partnered with several other attorneys and met the first of his current partners more than 25 years ago and was a founding principal in his current law firm of Vander Wel, Jacobson, & Kim, PLLC with its office in Bellevue, Washington. The firm represents clients primarily in legal matters pertaining to business, real estate, and Immigration law. Gary has been a contracts specialist for more than 40 years.

When he needed a numbers, valuation, and tax specialist to help structure clients’ business deals, he aligned with a non-attorney Larry Morrison more than 20 years ago. It was this affiliation that created the educational piece to Gary’s career. He and Larry have since worked with professional organizations around the country presenting seminars on business succession planning for buying, selling and merging companies.  They also do extensive internal succession planning.  The firm represent a broad array of clients, from small individually owned companies, to larger firms doing business thoughout the United States and internationally.

Over the years, Gary and his family spent their vacations enjoying boating in the San Juan Islands. Gary and his family loved the area so much that they eventually bought a home in Anacortes, Washingon, and spent part of their time living in Kirkland and part of their time in Anacortes; which is how Gary came to open the firm's present branch office in Anacortes.    



Practice areas


  1. Contracts: 40%
    36 years
  2. Business: 30%
    36 years
  3. Corporate: 20%
    36 years
  4. Real Estate: 10%
    36 years


Payment types:

Cash, Check, Credit card

Attorney endorsements

2 total 

Are you an attorney? Endorse this lawyer

  • Neli T Espe

    I have known Gary for 5 years. He is an outstanding lawyer who is committed to his clients. I strongly endorse this lawyer's work.


    Neli Espe Business Attorney
    Relationship: Worked together on matter

  • Jeffrey Allen James

    I have had the privilege of knowing and working with Gary ("Jake") for many years. I consistently hear positive comments from his satisfied clients. He is an outstanding lawyer and outstanding person.


    Jeffrey James Employment and labor Attorney
    Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community

Contact info

Vander Wel, Jacobson & Kim, PLLC

1540 140th Avenue NE
Suite 200
Bellevue, WA, 98005

Vander Wel, Jacobson, & Kim, PLLC

2201 Highland Dr
Anacortes, WA, 98221



We have not found any instances of professional misconduct for this lawyer.
Avvo contributions
Legal answers
Work experience
TitleCompany nameDuration
PrincipalVander Wel, Jacobson & Kim, PLLC1987 - Present
Vice President & General CounselCornerstone Advisors, Inc.1983 - 1985
Vice President & General CounselCommonwealth Properties1979 - 1982
PrincipalKeller, Jacobson, Hole, Jackson & Wentz1975 - 1979
Staff CounselSafeco Insurance Company1973 - 1975
Civil DeputyKing County Prosecutor's Office1970 - 1972
Association namePosition nameDuration
Anacortes Chamber of CommerceBoard Member2013 - Present
Skagit County Bar AssociationMember2013 - Present
Economic Development Association of Skagit CountyMember2010 - Present
Washington State Bar AssociationMember1970 - Present
Business Transition NetworkCo-FounderN/A
Bellevue Business RoundtableChairman1998 - 2003
Publication nameTitleDate
Northwest Business MonthlyHow To Buy, Sell, Merge or Perpetuate a Business2009
The Contracts CompanyLibrary of Agency Agreements2005
CNA Commercial Insurance GuideField Training Manual, a Guide to Perpetuating and Selling Agencies1998
School nameMajorDegreeGraduated
University of Washington School of LawLawJD - Juris Doctor1970
University of WashingtonAccountingBA - Bachelor of Arts1966
Speaking engagements
Conference nameTitleDate
Skagit Women in Business Featured SpeakerCorporations and LLCs2010
Pharmacy Strategies ConferenceNuts & Bolts Overview: Buying or Selling a Pharmacy2010
Insurance Agency Valuation Podcast/NewsletterPerpetuation: Special Factors2010
Economic Development Association of Skagit County SeminarSuccession Planning and Exit Strategies2009
Anacortes Chamber of Commerce SeminarCorporations and LLCs2009
Business Development SeminarBuy-Sell-Merge2008
The Inside Track WeeklyHow to Sell Your Agency2007
Anacortes Chamber of Commerce Business Development SeminarThe Business Ownership Seminar2007
Washington PIA ConventionAgency Compensation After Spitzer: Tsunami Warning2005
PIA Western Alliance SeminarAgency Operation and Compensation After Spitzer, plus Agency Valuation, Perpetuation, and Succession2005
PIA of Oregon Continuing Education SeminarWhat Agents Need to Know: The Compensation Disclosure Amendment to the Producer Licensing Model Act, Including the Marsh/Spitzer Settlement2005
PIA Oregon Continuing Education SeminarThe Basics: How to Buy and Sell Agencies2004
PIA of Montana Continuing Education SeminarWhat Every Agent Needs to Know: How to Buy or Sell an Agency2004