|Job description||Family District Courts are devoted to family cases. Term is four years.|
|Duties||Family courts handle divorce, child custody, child support, and related cases.|
|Maryellen Whitlock Hicks|
PO Box 15640 Fort Worth, TX 76119
|James B Munford|
Note: Candidate answers are shown alphabetically by last name.
What is your current Occupation?
James B Munford: I am currently the Associate Judge of the 322nd District Court, a Family Law Court. I have been the Associate Judge for the 322nd District Court for ten (10) years and I have been Board Certified in Family Law for twenty- eight (28) years. I received my Doctorate of Jurisprudence in December of 1980 and was licensed in May 1981. I have been licensed to practice law for thirty-six (36) years. I received by Bachelor of Arts Degree in 1976.
How do you maintain impartiality on the Bench?
James B Munford: A judge can remain impartial by following the Rule of Law and the judicial process. A judge should call a case for trial, have the parties present their case, and rule on the case base on the evidence and the law. If a judge does this he or she will always be impartial.
Do you feel the War on Drugs has been effective or ineffective?
James B Munford: We as a society have attempted to battle the use of illegal drugs for decades. The approach we have taken often gives mixed signals to persons in our society. We have spent millions of dollars and work hours to eliminate the trafficking of drugs here in the United States. Depending on the administration currently in office, this often sets the criteria our government will use to address this issue. As of this time we have a conservative administration in office and they appear to be taking an aggressive approach through law enforcement to resolve this dilemma. When government sends mixed signals to its citizens concerning the enforcement of our drug laws we cannot, as a society, set rules and regulations as a whole that we should follow to eliminate this problem. We should have a mutual consensus, following the rule of law, that our society should use.
What do you believe to be the root causes for the high number of minority and juvenile offenders?
James B Munford: It is important to keep the family intact and have involved parents. If there is a minimum amount of quality time spent with the parent that does not provide structure, which does not contain rules or encouragement, or any type of consistent adult behavior there is a stronger likelihood of offending activity. By spending time with a child as a family through family activities, it not only provides necessary supervision for the child, it creates a positive role model and interaction that is needed for a healthy upbringing and a positive commitment to our society.
What changes can the Court System make to reduce these numbers?
James B Munford: The Family Court system is limited as to what they can do to reduce these numbers. However, if the Court will make a concise ruling on the law then families and the public will know what to expect. I am running for a Family Court and it is important to encourage families to co-parent. This means where appropriate, having them participate in parenting programs, dispute and conflict resolution programs, and ensuring that parents have frequent contact with their children. This will help families in conflict to resolve their issues and set a positive example for their children.