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Texas Supreme Court Justice, Place 7

6-year term. Must be age 35-74 years, a U.S. Citizen, a Texas resident, licensed to practice law in Texas, a r egistered voter, and have at least 10 years experience as a lawyer or judge. Hears final appeals of decisions on civil cases and attorney discipline, issuing writs of mandamus/habeas corpus, and conducting proceedings for removal of judges.

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    Brandy Voss

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    Staci Williams

Biographical Information

Background: What training, experience, and background qualify you for this position?

Judicial Selection: Texas is one of a few states that elects judges. What changes in the judicial selection process would you recommend, if any?

Standards: What changes, if any, are needed to provide better protection to the public regarding rules and standards for the legal profession?

Responsibility: Which responsibility of a Texas Supreme Court justice is your highest priority and how do you intend to accomplish it?

What other issues do you believe will be most pressing for the Supreme Court?

Education: Baylor University School of Law, J.D., magna cum laude, 2002; Texas A&M University, B.A., Anthropology 1999
Twitter: @brandy_voss
I have practiced appellate law for seventeen years. I have been board certified in civil appellate law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization for ten years. I spent five years working as a staff attorney at the Texas Supreme Court and at the Thirteenth Court of Appeals. I estimate that I have participated in nearly 1,000 appellate proceedings during my career.
I believe there is no perfect system for selecting judges. I support a thorough exploration of various methods and the benefits and drawbacks of each before any change to the judicial selection process is made. I do trust our voting public to make the correct choice if that remains as the Texas method for selecting judges.
Juries are the voice of our communities in the courtroom, and the Constitutional right to a jury trial is the public's last defense against governmental oppression. While I believe the ethical rules prohibit me from speaking publicly about specific proposed rule changes, I believe any rule changes must be geared toward protecting the right to a jury trial.
In today’s toxic political environment, public confidence in all our civic institutions is falling. I will prioritize strengthening judicial independence—courts should be free from political attacks and intimidation. Also, our state’s highest court needs more debate, more diversity, and more dissent before overturning the decisions of juries performing their civic duty.
The need to fund legal services to ensure our courts are accessible to all, especially the most vulnerable, has been advocated by both parties' jurists and political leaders. This call to action requires a greater sense of urgency, or our courts risk being even further removed from the most vulnerable and undermining trust in the principle of justice of justice for all.
Education: The Hockaday School; Smith College, BA; Georgetown University Law Center, JD
I am in my second term as a trial court Judge in the 101st District Court. I have served as an arbitrator for DART, USPS, Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service, NASD/FINRA, and the Washington Metropolitan Airport Board. My experience includes in-house corporate counsel positions in multiple industries, as well as a trial attorney and administrative judge for the EEOC.
Ideally, I would like to see the money come out of judicial races and have the State send out materials to registered voters detailing the experience and qualifications of candidates for judicial positions.
Before proposing any changes it is important that we first identify what the perceived problems are, whether existing rules and standards will address the issue and, if they don't, formulate rules that are narrowly tailored to address the issues.
To impartially apply the law to cases that come before the Court, in a way that delivers real justice.
There are a number of them, but I do not wish to violate the Canon of Judicial Ethics by taking a position on any particular issue.