District court chooses new commissioner

Senior deputy prosecutor tapped to fill vacant seat

By Jessica Prokop, Columbian Courts Reporter

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The Clark County District Court bench has selected Senior Deputy Prosecutor Abbie Bartlett to join them as a part-time court commissioner.

Bartlett, who is the unit coordinator for the Clark County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office’s elder justice unit, will fill the seat vacated by Commissioner Todd George, who moved into the full-time commissioner seat last month.

“I feel very privileged to be a part of the Clark County District Court bench. Clark County is such a great community, and I intend to work every day to treat people fairly, respectfully and in accordance with the law,” Bartlett said.

Bartlett was selected out of 20 applicants.

“We had many qualified candidates, but we were most impressed with her qualifications, background and enthusiasm to join us. Abbie also has been volunteering as a pro-tem judge to get experience and is doing a great job. She is going to be a fantastic addition to our Clark County bench,” District Court Judge Darvin Zimmerman said in an email.

After 11 years with the prosecuting attorney’s office, Bartlett said she’s built a solid foundation and is ready to take those skills to the other side of the bench. In addition to the elder justice unit, she’s worked as an appellate attorney, a team leader in the juvenile unit, and in the domestic violence and general felony units, as well as District Court.

“I feel like I have a really unique opportunity, because there’s such a wide variety of people from the community who come before us. I look forward to positively shaping the community’s perception of the judicial system,” Bartlett said.

Bartlett obtained her law degree in 2005 from Seattle University. She went to work for the prosecuting attorney’s office straight out of law school.

She will make the transition to the District Court bench in the next few weeks. A date has not been set. In the meantime, the prosecuting attorney’s office is working to find her replacement, she said.