I left a lucrative private law practice and successful business when Governor Jim Hunt appointed me to be a trial judge. I wanted to dedicate the rest of my legal career to service as a trial judge and use the experience and knowledge I had gained in the prior 28 years. It was a great decision for me and I have been blessed with many opportunities to work with other community leaders and individuals to lead our court system into the 21st Century. These are challenging times and the needs are great, particularly with mental health services, substance abuse treatment and domestic violence. My work with various organizations and treatment providers has made me a better trial judge because I know what services are available for the people who appear before me. I collaborate with different organizations and agencies in the judicial system to reduce recidivism and help our young people turn away from gangs and crime in order to reach their potential to be productive citizens. I also volunteer in the schools to improve school attendance and performance.