Occupation: Attorney focusing in Elder Law and Special Needs Planning. Work as Of Counsel with Morgan & DiSalvo, P.C.
Previous elected offices held: None.
Other community service experience: Georgia Abuse, Neglect & Exploitation (ANE) informal legislative work group, Georgia Bureau of Investigation (2015 to present); Atlanta Bar Association, Member (2005-06; 2011 to present), Estate Planning and Probate Section (2014-present), Elder Law Section; National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys, Member (2006, 2011-present), Board of Directors (2017-2019), Co-Chair, Legislative Committee (2019); ElderCounsel, Member (2013-present); Academy of Special Needs Planning Attorneys, Member (2012-present); Atlanta Knitting Guild (2010-present), Treasurer (2012-13); Jewish Family & Career Services, North Fulton Advisory Committee (2006); Congregation Beth Shalom, Co-chairperson, Stitch and K’vetch (2019-present), Vice President, Development (2002-04), Legal Counsel to the Board of Directors (2002-03).
What is motivating you to run for this office?
I have dedicated my life to representing clients in Probate Courts across the state of Georgia. After the honorable Judge Toomer announced her retirement, I received encouragement from colleagues to run. Fulton County deserves a judge who is experienced, compassionate and efficient. I have achieved many honors throughout my career and have earned the reputation across the state of Georgia for managing complex matters. My goal is to take that experience, build on the court’s current successes, and bring a fresh approach to the Fulton County Probate Court.
What is the biggest issue facing the court system and how will you address it?
Inefficient court processes. I see the role of probate court judge as both managing cases and court administration. To that end, the judge must remove obstacles that impede court procedures. This may involve revising certain processes and investing in new technology, like e-filing. Currently, Probate Court receives the smallest funding of any court in Fulton County. As judge, I will be pragmatic in helping shape that budget and an advocate for more investment in the court from the Fulton County Board of Commissioners.
What strengths and weaknesses have the coronavirus pandemic crisis revealed in the court system?
The Probate Court has shined during this crisis. Despite reduced staff and personal risk, people came to work, held hearings and answered questions. The court and its staff should be proud of the work they have performed under these stressful conditions.
The good and bad news is that the Probate Court will continue to feel the strain on the court system created by this crisis for the remainder of 2020, and possibly in 2021. Managing backlog is always stressful, but it also creates an opportunity to find new strategies to improve the court’s efficiency for the long term.