The Bar Rates the Judges

Pierce County Judge Ratings

The Tacoma-Pierce County Bar Association earlier this year released the results of its 2012 evaluation of the county's Superior Court bench.

The association's more than 1,500 lawyers were given the opportunity to rate all 22 judges on their legal ability, impartiality and integrity and professionalism using a scale of excellent, very good, acceptable, poor and unacceptable.

More than 400 attorneys responded.

The lawyers also were asked two yes-or-no questions. One asked whether the attorneys thought a judge was able to provide a fair and competent hearing. The other asked whether the attorneys would vote to re-elect the judge.

The News Tribune used the answers to the yes-or-no questions to rank the judges by adding the positive responses they received on both questions then dividing that sum by the number of lawyers who responded to both questions.

The newspaper also sought comments from lawyers about their impression of the judges (anonymity was granted) and responses from the judges themselves.

Click on each judge’s name to see how he or she fared in the survey. You can hover your cursor over each section of the charts to see the number of positive, negative and neutral answers each judge received.

The full survey is available at the Tacoma-Pierce County Bar Association’s website:


Name Department Rank
Stephanie Arend  12  16 
Rosanne Buckner  14 
Bryan Chushcoff  13 
Ronald Culpepper  17 
Frank Cuthbertson  21 
Thomas Felnagle  15 
Frederick Fleming  22 
Beverly Grant  18  21 
John Hickman  22 
Vicki Hogan  17 
Garold Johnson  10 
Thomas Larkin 
Linda Lee  19  19 
Elizabeth Martin  16 
John McCarthy  11  15 
Edmund Murphy 
Kathryn Nelson  13  20 
James Orlando 
Susan Serko  14 
Katherine Stolz  18 
Brian Tollefson  11 
Kitty-Ann van Doorninck  20  12 
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