The Tennessee General Sessions Judges Conference elected Hamilton County General Sessions and Mental Health Court Judge Lila Statom as its new president. The TGSJC is comprised of Tennessee General Sessions Judges across the state and works with the Administrative Office of the Courts to provide continuing education opportunities for its members. The TGSJC also provides assistance and support to other judges as well as local and state government officials to address legal and procedural issues affecting General Sessions Court. Prior to her selection at the TGSJC annual conference last week, Judge Lila Statom served as president-elect and as East Tennessee vice president.
“I am deeply humbled to have been chosen by my peers as president of this great group of judges, and I greatly appreciate the service of outgoing TGSJC President, Judge Lynda Jones of Nashville,” said Judge Statom. “I plan to work tirelessly with members of the judiciary, legislature, executive branch, local government as well as my colleagues to continue to make sure we have the best courts in the country.”
Governor Bill Haslam originally appointed Judge Statom as Hamilton County General Sessions Judge in 2012, after which she was elected by the citizens for a full term in 2014. Prior to her appointment, she served as an assistant district attorney in Nashville and Chattanooga for nearly 24 years. Since taking the bench, Judge Statom has worked with community partners to address chronic mental illness and substance use among members of the criminal justice system, and she has been integral in expanding recovery courts in Hamilton County and Tennessee.
“As Tennesseans increasingly face the ravages of substance abuse, we need more judges with both an interest and the requisite experience to deal with citizens in need of mental health and addiction services,” said Deborah Taylor Tate, director of the Tennessee Administrative Office of the Courts. “Judge Statom’s leadership in Hamilton County — and now-as the President of the Conference — will continue to raise the importance of educating our judges about both issues impacting one in four families, as well as the services that are available today.”
Other judges elected to the TGSJC board include Judge Tommy Moore of Weakley County as treasurer; Judge Lynda Jones of Davidson County as past-president; Judge Deborah Means of Shelby County as president-elect; Judge James Ross of Wayne County as middle regional vice-president; Judge Terry Stevens of Roane County as east regional vice-president; and Judge Lee Ann Pafford Dobson of Shelby County as west regional vice-president.