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Judicial Nominating Commission

DeLacerda Elected To Judicial Nominating Commission

Attorney Melissa DeLacerda of Stillwater has been elected by her fellow lawyers to serve on the state’s Judicial Nominating Commission. She will serve as one of six lawyers on the 15-member commission, which plays a key role in the selection of Oklahoma judges.

She defeated J. David Ezzell of Enid in a runoff election to represent District 6, which is composed of 23 counties in the northwestern part of the state.

DeLacerda has been in private practice in Payne and surrounding counties for more than 30 years. Her practice primarily focuses on litigation. She has served on numerous OBA committees through the years. She was a YLD board member, Board of Governors member and OBA president in 2003. She has served on the Professional Responsibility Commission and numerous task forces and she currently chairs the Oklahoma Bar Journal Board of Editors. She is the author of West Practice Series Volume on Family Law.

Also recently elected to the Judicial Nominating Commission was attorney Jim Webb of Oklahoma City. He will represent District 5, composed of all of Oklahoma County except for those portions described as State Senate District No. 42 and House District No. 96 as they existed in 1967.

The Judicial Nominating Commission is charged with selecting candidates for judicial appointments made by the governor. When there is a judicial vacancy on the Oklahoma Supreme Court, the Court of Criminal Appeals or the Court of Civil Appeals, the commission chooses a field of three candidates from which the governor will make her appointment. Oklahoma trial court judges are elected by popular vote, however mid-term vacancies are also filled by the nominating process.

The six lawyer members of the commission each represent districts that mirror Oklahoma’s six congressional districts as they existed in 1967, when the commission was created. Elections are held each odd-numbered year for members from two districts. The Oklahoma Bar Association is charged with conducting the elections.

In addition to the six lawyer members of the Judicial Nominating Commission, there are six nonlawyers appointed by the governor and three at-large members. Of those three, one is selected by the speaker of the House of Representatives, one is selected by president pro tempore of the Senate and one is selected by at least eight commission members. All serve six-year terms, except the members at large who serve two-year terms. More information about the Judicial Nominating Commission is available at www.oscn.net/jnc/about.