In Pursuit of Greater Justice
I am running for District Court Judge because I owe it to the citizens of Durham to give back to a community that I have received so much from. As a practicing attorney in Durham for almost 20 years, I have gained first hand knowledge and experience from assisting my clients navigate the justice system. It is through these experiences that I have been given a front row seat to the hurdles citizens of Durham face when interacting with the Justice system.
As a District Court Judge, I will serve the citizens of Durham by administering Justice from the perspective of a true servant to the community.
All too often those who are charged with the responsibility of administering justice have a tendency to treat citizens who appear before them as just a number. It is impossible to render decisions which are fair and equitable when citizens are not valued as human beings. The desire to hold onto public office becomes the focus instead of serving the community.
Apathy, lack of progressive ideals, and an overall disconnect from the day to day lives of citizens can result in citizens receiving unfair sentences and unrealistic fines. In an effort to avoid being labeled “soft on crime”, those who are tasked with the responsibility of administering justice can become “hard on people”. This flawed thinking is especially dangerous when dealing with youthful offenders because ruling without balancing grace and accountability children are ushered further down the school to prison pipeline.
Those charged with the responsibility of administering Justice: Law enforcement officials, Lawyers and Judges must never forget that those who appear before them are real people who deserve to be treated with dignity and respect. A Judge must remember that they have a duty to render decisions that are rooted in law and facts, while still focusing on the possibility of rehabilitation and redemption.
As a 5th Grade classroom teacher, I learned the power of meeting my students where they were to assist them with reaching the next level. My classroom was filled with students from varying levels of academic ability, but it was my responsibility to treat them with individual attention designed specifically for them to help them reach their education goals. I will take that same level of individual attention to each citizen who appears before me. It will be my goal to provide Victims of crime, individuals charged with a crime, and plaintiffs seeking civil relief just and equitable decisions which are tailored to the law and facts of their case.
Maintaining the highest standard of Judicial Decorum: Treating all court personnel, attorneys, and citizens with respect
Exercising patience and care with citizens who are seeking help from the Court
Collaborating with judicial officials and staff to efficiently serve the citizens of Durham
· Focusing on treatment opportunities for Drug and Mental Health
· Utilizing judicial discretion to address root causes of crime and delinquency
· Addressing the rise in violent crimes committed by juveniles
· Attention to Re-entry Services and Specialty Courts
·Emphasizing Parent Education Programming
· Working in partnership with Criminal Diversion Programs