Openings for Appointment or Election

The following are all current openings known to KCBA for judicial positions subject to election by King County voters or appointment in our region. Most will be subject first to appointment by the Governor, County Council, or local city council. The bar recommends that attorneys interested in a judicial career obtain evaluation ratings from KCBA well in advance of the appearance of a vacancy on this page. Generally speaking, appointing authorities publish notice of a vacancy to solicit interest from attorneys with existing ratings. The bar's process, which relies on the availability of volunteer attorneys to conduct evaluations, can take up to 3 months from the date an applicant submits an application for rating. It is very unlikely that a rating can be issued on short notice.

To learn more about our process, select the "Judicial Candidate Evaluation Rating Process" link from the menu bar on the right side of this page.


Current & Upcoming Openings as of 8/21/20:

  • King County District Court, Southwest Electoral District, Position 4

    King County District Court  Judge  D. Mark  Eide has retired from  King County District Court. His last  date of service was  June  30, 2020. Judge  Eide was  first  elected to the  District Court  in 2002  and  he served the court with distinction for over 18 years.  His departure creates a vacancy in the Southwest Electoral District, Position 4.   Metropolitan King County Council will  begin  the  process of appointing a new  judge  to this  position to fill the  remainder of Judge  Eide's  term which will end  in early January of 2023.

    U.S. District Court for Western District of Washington
  • Two nominations were reportedly being made in the summer of 2018 by President Trump to the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington for attorneys Kathleen O'Sullivan and Tessa Gorman, but neither was officially submitted by the White House for Senate consideration.  The White House is reportedly vetting candidates for a third U.S. District Court opening but has not yet announced a nomination.

  • Washington Supreme Court
    Justice Charles Wiggins has announced his retirement effective March 31, 2020. Governor Inslee will appoint a successor who will run for election in November 2020 to complete the remaining two years of Justice Wiggins' current term.

  • Washington Court of Appeals Division I
    Judge Ann Schindler retired effective December 31, 2019.  Governor Inslee appointed King County Superior Court Judge Bill Bowman to replace her; he is subject to election in 2020.

    Division I is seeking a Court Commissioner; applications due December 20, 2019. Details at www.courts.wa.gov/employ/docs/21995/Announcement.pdf.

  • King County Superior Court
    Attorney Nelson Lee was appointed February 18 by Governor Inslee to the vacant position on King County Superior Court that occurred when Judge Bill Bowman moved to the Court of Appeals.

    Judge John Erlick has announced his upcoming retirement effective April 30, 2020; Governor Inslee is likely to appoint a replacement who will need to file a petition in May for election to a full term starting in 2021.

  • Seattle Municipal Court
    No current openings.

  • King County District Court
    Kevin Peck was appointed by the King County Council December 4 to fill the vacancy due to the recent death of Judge Peter Nault (Northeast Electoral District.




  •  
  •  

The Rumor Mill
KCBA expects a position to open on Seattle Municipal Court during the month of March; Mayor Durkan will then nominate a replacement judge. Stay tuned for details.

Working to improve the administration of justice is an important part of the King County Bar Association’s mission.

KCBA has evaluated and rated judicial performance since 1948 through surveys of current judicial officers, ratings for those seeking appointment or election to the bench, and monitoring of fair campaign practices and hosting of candidate forums.

Judicial Candidate Evaluation Ratings Process
Fair Campaign Practices Guidelines
Judicial Officer Surveys
Current Judicial Openings
Candidate Forum Archives