Elisabeth Reynoldson is the new District Court Judge appointed by Gov. Kim Reynolds. Reynoldson was appointed July 16 and has finished her work at Reynoldson, Van Werden L.L.P. Her first official day working as District Court Judge was Monday.
Reynoldson is now District Court Judge in District 5B, which is a nine county district made up of Adams, Taylor, Adair, Union, Ringgold, Clarke, Decatur, Lucas and Wayne County. District 5B is a sub district of District 5. There are three sub districts; District 5A, 5B and 5C.
“As a judge serving in one of the 5th Judicial Districts, I can hear cases in any of those three,” said Reynoldson.
When Reynoldson decided to put in her application, it was reviewed by the Judicial Nomination Committee for 5B, which is made up half of members who are appointed by the governor, and half of lawyers who live in the district. It’s chaired by the most senior District Court Judge in the district. The committee reviews all the applications and conducts the interviews. The Nomination Committee then chooses two applicants, and those two applicants’ applications and letters of recommendations are reviewed by the governor, and it’s the governor who chooses between the final two.
“The District Court Judge has general jurisdiction to hear anything,” said Reynoldson. “So it could be all levels of criminal cases, civil cases, family law cases; just whatever you’re assigned to.”
Reynoldson had some mentors who were very influential in her desire to be a judge. The judge whose place Reynoldson is filling is John Lloyd of Osceola, who at one time was one of Reynoldson’s law partners. Jim Brown, who was the District 5B judge before Lloyd and her father-in-law Ward Reynoldson have also been mentors during her career. Reynoldson is now the third District Court Judge of 5B to come from Osceola.
“Seeing those people who I think the world of, and what they did and how I like to approach the law I thought being a judge would fit well with my personality,” said Reynoldson. “I like to not only look at the law but also research the facts and figure out what the answer should be.”
Reynoldson had to make a tough decision when applying for the position of District Court Judge: leaving her practice also means leaving her clients. The decision was tough for her, knowing that she would no longer be able to work with the generations of families that her practice and partners have served over the years.
Reynoldson is looking forward to this new challenge. She has enjoyed the variety that her career has afforded her and is excited to continue to branch out and see an even wider array of cases as a judge.