Ann Jackson responds to Citizen questions

Tue, 07/01/2008 - 4:45pm
By: Ann Jackson

1. Why are you interested in being the probate judge?

Fayette County has given my family a great life. Because of my legal expertise and years of experience working in a probate court, I don't know of a better way that I personally can give back to the community than by serving as probate judge.

2. What is your experience in probate court matters?

Virtually my entire legal career has been in probate law, working in a probate court. In 1980, one year after graduating from law school I began as a law clerk in the Fulton County Probate Court. Through the years I was promoted to Staff Attorney, Senior Attorney and in 2002, appointed as a Judicial Hearing Officer. In my years working in the court I have handled every type of probate court case and attended to the many administrative functions of the court. I have served as a front line clerk as well as acting Chief Deputy Clerk and Probate Judge. I have served as judge in hundreds of probate court cases.

3. What is your experience in supervising employees?

I have supervised more than thirty five clerks in all functions of probate court administration. This includes working with the clerks in legal, administrative and personnel matters. From advising clerks on handling complex legal documents, to personnel issues, personal crises and concerns, to deciding if we can purchase an additional coffee maker without blowing the circuit in the old building we work in, and if so, what color coffee maker it should be (do not underestimate the number of opinions people have in such matters) I have done it all. The judge and the clerks work as a team, and one cannot function without the other. It is essential to have clerks who are knowledgeable, courteous, satisfied with their jobs, and most importantly, who know they are appreciated.

4. How efficiently is the current probate court being operated? What changes will you make if elected?

I think the current court is being run very efficiently. At this time I cannot say what changes would be made, but if elected will evaluate the entire court and see what may be needed.

5. What makes you a better choice than the other candidates?

I will bring to the office a level of experience and expertise that is unique because of the path my career has taken. After the 2010 census the population of Fayette County will officially exceed 96,000. Under Georgia law the jurisdiction of a probate court in a county with a population in excess of 96,000 has expanded jurisdiction and additional responsibilities. For many years I have worked in a court with the expanded jurisdiction and duties. I will manage the court's transition into the new duties knowing what needs to be done.

6. Rate the other two candidates as potential probate court judges.

Both of my opponents are distinguished attorneys in Fayette County. I believe I am the best candidate as I have described above. Fayette County voters are responsible for ranking the candidates. I believe they will make the right choice.

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