1. Who are you, and what are you running for?
I am Judy Warne, a native Houstonian, and I am running to keep my position as presiding Judge of the 257th Judicial District Court.
2. What kind of cases does this court hear?
The 257th hears family cases.
3. Why are you running for this particular bench?
I have spent my entire adult life caring about and working on family related issues–legal and otherwise. I am the only candidate on the ballot this fall who is both Board Certified in Family Law and a fellow in the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers. I have been on this bench for 5 years and during that time have improved its docket from being the heaviest of the family courts to being the court with the 3rd fewest cases. I am working hard and doing my job and want to keep it.
4. What are your qualifications for this job?
In addition to being Board Certified in Family Law since 1989, I spent 21 years doing family law trial work before being appointed to this bench in 2005. I have spoken at more than 50 programs for continuing legal education for lawyers, am frequently asked to speak at educational training programs for judges by the Texas Center for the Judiciary, and have been on the faculty of legal education programs sponsored by the State Bar of Texas, University of Texas, University of Houston, South Texas College of Law, Texas Minority Attorneys Program, Texas Counsel on Family Violence, Houston Bar Association Family Law Section and Alternate Dispute Resolution Section, and many of the local bar associations. I have taught family law at South Texas College of Law for 15 years. I have consistently demonstrated and been recognized for my abilities as a legal scholar who wants to improve family law from the view of the litigants, the bar and the bench. I have the respect of my colleagues and was named Chair of both the Legislative and Facilities Committees of the Board of Judges of Harris County. I was honored to be elected Administrative Judge of the Family Trial Division of Harris County and currently serve in that capacity, and have served as the Legislative Liaison of that body. I am currently serving my 7th year on the Family Law Council, which is the governing body of the Family Law Section of the State Bar of Texas. I have dedicated my adult life to family law.
Off the bench, I volunteer for many family related programs, including the Victim’s Assistance Center SAFE Christmas visitation program, I founded “It Shouldn’t Kill a Texas Teen 2 Date” teen dating violence program, serve on the Domestic Violence Task Force for the Catholic Diocese of Galveston-Houston, and volunteer for School of ROK [Rights of Kids].
5. Why is this race important?
This race is important because we need scholarship, hard work and consistency on the family law benches. The changes in the family code are voluminous every legislative session. The families in Harris County deserve family judges who will keep up with the law, strictly apply the law, and who see their bench as an opportunity for service. We need judges who understand the law, will hear cases, and be decisive in their rulings.
6. Why should people vote for you in November?
I have been a very hard working judge who is decisive and timely with rulings, and who knows family law better than any other judge or candidate on the ballot. I am frequently contacted by lawyers, judges and legislators to answer questions and make suggestions about family law and proposed changes. If you look at my record, my qualifications, and my off-the-bench service to my church and community, there is no doubt that I am the better qualified candidate.
Judge Judy Warneke lacks compassion and concern for the families that come through her court. Regimentally in assessing child support and custody appears to be a ‘preprogrammed’ line and column decision that could just as well be carried out by a computer. It leaves the families with disbelief that a court could be so callous.