History of PNAI

A professional organization of licensed investigators incorporated in the State of Washington in 1947.

A History of Service

The Pacific Northwest Association of Investigators (PNAI) was established to assist members with their continuing professional education, to establish goals for professional conduct and behavior by mandating high standards of personal and professional conduct.

During the late 1940’s, three of the regions leading private investigators – Fred Fox, Dan Taylor, and Winsor Olsen saw an opportunity to enhance the professionalism of the private investigative industry and improve the quality of the services the private investigative industry offered the community.

In 1947, these three visionaries established the Pacific Northwest Association of Investigators was established as a non-profit organization devoted to increasing the professionalization of the industry, insuring the ethical behavior of it’s members, and protecting the client community.

Since it’s founding, PNAI has provided:

  • Members with opportunities for both advanced training and continuing education; and, business and professional development.
  • A mechanism for the client community to address allegations of inappropriate or unethical investigator behavior.
  • On-going assistance and guidance to the Washington Department of Licensing in establishing and updating Private Investigator license requirements.
  • Advised and lobbied the Washington State Legislature on issues affecting the industry.
  • Assistance to educational institutions in developing investigator training programs.

This continues to be the primary mission of PNAI and its membership. PNAI is committed to promoting the well-being of the profession and by working in concert with other professional associations, the Washington State Department of Licensing, and Washington State legislators in developing regulations and laws that enhance our profession and protect the public.

PNAI is dedicated to maintaining the highest ethical standards and practices; protection of our profession from unethical individuals or agencies; respect for client dignity, confidentiality, and privileged Information; good fellowship and understanding within the organization; and a presence and legislative effort on behalf of the investigations industry.


Historical Documents of PNAI

1947 PNAI Articles of Incorporation