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January 24, 2012 at 5:34 PM

Gregoire appoints new King Co. Superior Court judge

Lori Kay Smith, King County Superior Court commissioner, was named to the King County Superior Court bench today by Gov. Chris Gregoire. Smith replaces Steven C. González, who was appointed to the state Supreme Court effective Jan. 1.

“I look forward to the opportunity to serve the citizens of King County,” Smith said in a news release. “I am committed to increasing meaningful access to the court for litigants and will work hard to ensure they are treated with the dignity and respect they deserve. I will strive to uphold excellence and professionalism on the bench.”

Smith started her legal career working in the King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office’s Family Support Division, which establishes paternity and enforces responsibilities to pay for child support. She was later named a senior deputy prosecuting attorney and managed legal teams responsible for support enforcement cases. She also handled civil commitment, welfare fraud and felony drug trials during her more than 20 years with the Prosecuting Attorney’s Office, according to the news release from the governor’s office.

In 2006, Smith was named King County Superior Court Commissioner, where she presided over domestic violence protection order hearings, family-law motions, support modification, domestic partnership and non-parental custody matters. She has also served as judge pro tem in family law trials.

Smith also serves on a number of court committees, including the Unified Family Court Training Oversight Committee, the Court Safety Committee, the Interpreter Committee and the Juvenile Justice and Family Court Building Committee.

“Lori Kay has spent her career serving the citizens of King County, and has a tremendous track record of success,” Gregoire said in the news release. “Her professionalism, combined with her compassion, has earned the respect of her judicial colleagues and those who have stood before her. I welcome her to this new position.”

Comments | More in Government, The Blotter | Topics: King County Prosecuting Attorney's Office, King County Superior Court, Washington State Supreme Court

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