Joe Charter – Candidate Profile

            Hi!  I’m Joe Charter and I’m running for Circuit Court Judge position 8 in the November 4 election.  I’ve been a resident of Ashland for 8 years and a resident of the Valley for 18 years.  I have two daughters in Ashland High School, one of whom was the State Snowboard Championship in two events last year (her sister isn’t far behind according to the Oregonian).  I love living in Ashland and have been active in supporting groups like the Grange, Oregon Stageworks, League of Women Voters, Friends of the Animal Shelter (FOTAS), Boys to Men, Jefferson Public Radio (JPR), Advocates for the Severely Handicapped (ASH), etc.   


           I am currently the Jackson County Justice of the Peace.  The Justice Court was created because County traffic fatalities were among the highest in the State.  Traffic fatalities have been reduced by two thirds since the Court was created.  My objective is to be fair and impartial and treat citizens with dignity and respect.  I have presided over hundreds of traffic trials and thousands of arraignments.  I have over 100 hours of judicial training, and recently instructed other judges at a state-wide Judicial Education Conference.  You can view representative decisions at my website,


I have presided over criminal jury trials and family law matters as a Circuit Court Judge “Pro Tem” (latin for “fill in”).  I am a mediator, which helps reduce court caseloads.  I have 24 years of diverse legal experience.  I have served as the local Bar Association President and in statewide bar positions. My community involvement includes community theater, Rotary Club, SMART Reader, Britt volunteer and youth mentor.  I served on the Medford Planning Commission the Ashland Forest Lands Commission.  I am the only candidate who does not accept contributions from lawyers, because it creates the appearance of conflicts of interest. I believe offenders must be held accountable and crime victims should be made whole.  Courts should protect those most vulnerable among us: children, seniors, and victims of crime. 


I appreciate the free flow of ideas and community dialogue that is present in Ashland.  I hope to earn your vote on November 4.  Please call me directly if you have any questions.


Joe Charter, 944-4297   


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