I have spent the last thirteen years working for the Southwestern Judicial Circuit, which is comprised of Lee, Macon, Schley, Stewart, Sumter, and Webster Counties. I started as the law clerk for Judges Rucker Smith, George Peagler, and John Harper. The law clerk is the legal assistant to the judges, researching issues that come up in both civil and criminal cases. After researching whatever issues might come up, I was able to watch and learn from hearings on the issues I had prepared for the judge. For over two years I worked for the court system, watching how it operates from the inside. I believe this is important knowledge, as I would go into being a judge already knowing how the system works from the inside.
For the last eight years, I have participated in the Chief Justice’s Committee on Professionalism’s presentation on ethics and professionalism in the legal field to incoming law students at Mercer School of Law. This presentation during orientation is meant to introduce the students to the ideas of ethics and professionalism that they are going to experience both while students and in their professional careers. I believe professionalism is important in the legal field. Too many times attorneys have a “win at all costs” mentality. They view any disagreement with their position as a personal attack, or choose to make personal positions and arguments that should be professional. I believe that a judge should strive to remind the attorneys of this when they appear in front of him or her.
For the last year, I have been the Public Defender’s Office representative to the Southwestern Circuit’s Accountability Drug Court run by Judge James Sizemore. This incredible program is designed to offer addicts an intense program to get off drugs and become productive members of society. My function has been to advocate for those that have suffered setbacks in the program, and to make sure they are treated fairly and in accordance with the rules and procedures of the program.
I am also the treasurer for the Southwestern Judicial Circuit Bar Association. I have been responsible for the financial operation of the organization.
Besides my professional activities, I am involved in my community too. I am currently a member of the Americus Kiwanis Club, a civic organization of volunteers dedicated to changing the world one child and one community at a time. Besides volunteering at several charity events put on by the club, I have served as the treasurer, as well having twice being a member of the board of directors. Community involvement is important for any candidate, as a person must know a community to serve that community. An elected official should be prepared to give back to the community.
I have also recently joined the board of directors for the Americus-Sumter Fuller Center for Housing. This organization is dedicated to Millard Fuller’s vision of safe and affordable housing for all. The Americus-Sumter Fuller Center is currently focused on helping those who cannot do so themselves repair and refurbish homes to a livable state. I was honored to be made the board Secretary after being on the board only a short time. Again, an elected official should be prepared to give back to the community.
I believe I am the right candidate for the position of Superior Court Judge for the Southwestern Judicial Circuit. I ask for your support in my campaign.