3 Hamilton County Criminal Court Judges To Seek Re-Election; Poole Running As Democrat; Stern, Steelman As Republicans

Monday, December 2, 2013 - by Hollie Webb
Judges Don Poole, Rebecca Stern and Barry Steelman
Judges Don Poole, Rebecca Stern and Barry Steelman

Hamilton County’s three Criminal Court judges have all officially decided to seek re-election in 2014. Judges Don W. Poole, Barry A. Steelman, and Rebecca June Stern will be running in the upcoming election.

Judge Poole is running as a Democrat in the May primary and Judges Steelman and Stern as Republicans. The general election for the judges will be in August.

Division I is held by Judge Barry A. Steelman. Judge Steelman is a graduate of Red Bank High School, Carson-Newman University, and the University of Tennessee College of Law. Admitted to the Tennessee Bar in 1989, he first worked for the law firm of Spears, Moore, Rebman & Williams. In 1995, he worked as a prosecutor for former District Attorney Gary Gerbitz. Under District Attorney Bill Cox, Judge Steelman was promoted to managing prosecutor, then to Assistant District Attorney. In 2006, he was elected as the Division I Criminal Court Judge.

Outside of the courtroom, Judge Steelman has served the community through working with students, educating them about leadership and public service. He has also coached many different sports teams. In his church, he has been a deacon, Sunday school teacher, and member of the choir. In addition, Judge Steelman also served as the president of the Chattanooga Bar Association and is currently a Fellow of the Chattanooga Bar Foundation.

Judge Steelman said, “It has been an honor to spend most of my legal career working for the people of Hamilton County and the State of Tennessee. I am seeking re-election to continue serving as Criminal Court Judge and am asking for the support of this community.”

Judge Rebecca June Stern currently presides over the Division II Criminal Court and is also a judge for the Hamilton County Drug Court. Born in Cleveland, Judge Stern graduated with honors from both the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga and the University of Tennessee College of Law. After law school, she became an associate at Strang, Fletcher, Carriger, Walker, Hodge & Smith in Chattanooga. From 1989 to 1997, she served as Assistant District Attorney where she prosecuted all types of criminal cases. Here, she also helped develop the county-wide Domestic Violence Task Force. In 1997, she was appointed as a judge by former Governor Don Sundquist, and decided to seek election the following year.

Over the years, Judge Stern has served many positions at the Chattanooga Bar Association, including president, secretary, and a member of the board of directors. She continued to fight domestic violence by serving as a council member on the Domestic Violence State Coordinating Council for nearly six years. Judge Stern is also a Fellow of the Chattanooga Bar Foundation.

Judge Don W. Poole has been the presiding judge of Criminal Court Division III since 2006. Judge Poole is a graduate of the University of Tennessee’s Business school and College of Law, where he was in the Order of the Coif. He is also a veteran of the United States Air Force. Here, he earned the rank of Captain and served as a Judge Advocate General from 1966-1969. Judge Poole practiced law for over 30 years, including three years as the Chief Assistant District Attorney for Hamilton County. He has been married to his wife, Candice Anderson Poole, for 45 years. His son Chris is an Assistant United States Attorney and his daughter Courtney is the marketing director for the TSSAA.

In the community, Judge Poole is a member of Brainerd United Methodist Church, where he has taught Sunday school for 25 years. His professional memberships include the Chattanooga Bar Association, the Tennessee Bar Association, and the American College of Trial Lawyers. He is also a Fellow of both the Chattanooga Bar Foundation and the Tennessee Bar Foundation.

Judge Poole said, “I’ve tried to work and study long and hard and be respectful to all who come before me. If elected I pledge to continue to do that.”


Latest Hamilton County Jail Booking Report

Here is the latest jail booking report from Hamilton County: ADAMS, KENNETH BOBBY  4606 DODDS CHATTANOOGA, 37407  Age at Arrest: 51 years old Arresting Agency: Chattanooga FAILURE TO APPEAR --- AUSTIN, ASHLEY MESHELLE  2004 E 13TH ST CHATTANOOGA, 37408  Age at Arrest: 23 years old Arresting Agency: Chattanooga THEFT OF PROPERTY DISORDERLY ... (click for more)

Funeral Is Monday Evening For Prominent Pikeville Doctor Who Died In Motorcycle Wreck On Dayton Mountain

Funeral services will be Monday for a prominent Pikeville physician who died in a motorcycle crash on Friday night. The Tennessee Highway Patrol said Dr. David Leon McKinney Jr. lost control of his motorcycle while traveling east on Highway 30 on Dayton Mountain. He was trying to pass a tractor trailer and a pickup truck going down the mountain when a vehicle came around ... (click for more)

DWT Is DUI - And Response

A routine narrative of a DUI arrest report goes something like this:   The defendant was operating a motor vehicle in the 00 block of sonsoroad. The driver was weaving back and forth across the marked roadway. The defendant drove through a stop sign. Was stopped at an intersection despite the traffic light was green. Entered the lane of another vehicle and caused a ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: UT’s Gender-Neutral Dopes

With due apology to Smokey, the University of Tennessee’s famed blue-tick hound, the tail is wagging the dog at UT-Knoxville. Donna Braquet, the director of the university’s Pride Center, wants to suck 99.9 percent of the 28,000 students into a ridiculous scheme that will make the campus “welcoming and inclusive for all” … .01 percent. Her idea is to do away with binary gender ... (click for more)

UTC, Jacksonville State Tickets In '30 Minutes or Less' On Monday

Don't have your tickets to the Jacksonville State game yet?  If you work or live within five miles of campus, Monday will be one last chance to get them delivered in '30 Minutes or Less' or they are FREE.  This is for tickets to Saturday's season opener, or a full order of season tickets.  Only ticket orders made over the phone are eligible for this promotion. ... (click for more)

Baylor Sweeps Two Nashville Teams In Volleyball Saturday

Volleyball teams from Brentwood Academy and Pope John Paul II have at least one thing in common on Saturday following matches with Baylor and GPS.  They both headed back to Nashville with a win and a loss as both beat GPS and both lost to Baylor. Baylor improved to 13-1 overall and 3-0 in region play with Saturday's two wins, including a 3-1 verdict over Brentwood ... (click for more)