Please keep voting all the way down your ballot! With a population of about 150,000 in Monroe County, we have 91,394 registered to vote. Of those, I'm predicting that maybe 6,500 will vote in the judicial elections this primary (based on past years where there's a primary in a non-presidential year). If that proves true, and if there are no Republicans appointed over the summer, that means just seven percent of voters are picking the judges. Be one of the seven percent!
As a long-time small business owner, I know that I wouldn't still be in business if I didn't have a work ethic. I get paid last---after all my employees, and after all other overhead is paid. That means I'm very aware of the importance of timeliness and effective work for my clients, the courts, and my colleagues at the bar. I'm not perfect; no one is. But I have always striven to be respectful of all others involved in my cases.
Our local judges have long been leaders in Indiana. It's critical that our judges continue to serve in this role. I'm dedicated to continuing a life-long practice of learning about the law, helping to improve the practice of law, improving access to justice for all, and innovating in how justice is administered.
A judge is the administrator of that courtroom and of the cases that pass through the court. Each case involves real people--who are nervous, scared, and anxious for a fair and prompt decision. That takes organization.
I hope to bring the best of business, government, and nonprofit practices with me to the bench.
I am very proud to have included public service, community, and pro bono work since the beginning of my career. In fact, I've laid out my community experience and my pro bono work already and encourage you to learn more. I've been active in pro bono work since my first semester of law school and maintain an active pro bono caseload today, as a volunteer at District 10's free walk-in legal advice clinic, Counsel in the Court, with regular representation of pro bono clients, and as a CASA attorney.
None of us is perfect. As I talk to my clients about how it feels to go through a family law case, such as a divorce or a custody dispute, many worry about how a judge might view their depression or anxiety. I am glad to assure them that our local judges are very aware that going through a life change such as a divorce is a time that hits many of us hard and that I've never seen anyone lose custody or parenting time over depression or anxiety, so long as the person is managing the situation in a healthy way (for example, with counseling, medication, etc.).
Compassion is important to every client I’ve ever had—and to every adverse party. I’ve been to court as a client. It can be scary. Having a compassionate judge can make all the difference.
It's also important to be able to set aside partisan influences. Even though I am a life-long Democrat, I also have friends who are Republican, Libertarian, Green Party, and even apolitical. It's important to recognize that for most people, while we may certainly have different, and even passionately different, beliefs on important political issues, that we share a common belief that whatever our differences, that everyone gets a fair shake in court.
I am in the courtroom at least two to three times per week and have been litigating most of my twenty years as a lawyer. I handle everything from short pre-trial conferences to multi-day hearings involving multiple parties. I've handled depositions with unruly parties and court hearings so acrimonious that the presiding judge has had to send the bailiff to return a party to the courtroom.
I generally handle most of the courtroom work for my firm, appearing in court on average from two to four times per week. An essential attribute of a litigator is the ability to think on one's feet--to handle a changing situation in the courtroom by re-evaluating the needed evidence, the testimony of a witness, and the Judge's reactions.