To the Editor:
The children of Anderson County deserve the best juvenile judge Anderson County can offer. Careful thought must be given in the selection process to ensure our children will receive a proper review and disposition of their respective cases, starting with the first day the new judge is in office.
As a retired volunteer court-appointed special advocate (CASA), I approached my selection by first attending a forum to listen to each candidate present his experience and answer questions. I selected Mr. Clement based on his expressed experience and the quality of his answers to questions. I concluded he had the legal knowledge, juvenile court experience, life experience, and the compassion and tolerance along with a strong commitment to consider the need of the child first in all decisions.
I considered his opponent as ready for internship.
My next move was to conduct an in-depth review of Mr. Clement’s experience by interviewing him and talking to people who had knowledge about his work with juvenile cases. Mr. Clement stated he developed personal relationships with all Anderson County law enforcement personnel during his 28 years as a lawyer. He also stated he has developed relationships with people at state level to whom he plans to talk to about the need of legislative review of laws related to juveniles and their parents. He stated he worked closely with Children’s Services case workers and CASA volunteers on cases to which he was assigned when appointed as a guardian ad litem.
Mr. Clement also had cases wherein he was hired to represent parents or children. I received no negative comments about Mr. Clement from any of the interviews. A retired DCS case worker stated, “Mr. Clement helped a lot of children.”
Mr. Clement is a single parent with two children.
I am asking for your vote for Mr. Michael Clement as Anderson County Juvenile Court judge.