RETAIN | 6 - 0
Jonathan A. Woodman
Palmer Superior Court | Third Judicial District
Judge Woodman was appointed to the Palmer Superior Court in October of 2016. This is his first retention evaluation. He handles both civil and criminal cases.
After conducting its performance review, the Judicial Council determined that Judge Woodman met or exceeded performance standards on all criteria, including legal ability, integrity, impartiality/fairness, temperament, diligence, and administrative skills.
The Council also determined that Judge Woodman met or exceeded educational requirements set by the Alaska Supreme Court.
Because Judge Woodman met or exceeded all performance and professional development standards, the Alaska Judicial Council recommends a “yes” vote on retention in office.
The Council conducts a thorough performance review of each judge standing for retention. Key findings for Judge Woodman include:
- Ratings by justice system professionals: Attorneys, social services professionals, and law enforcement officers who appeared before Judge Woodman gave him very good reviews, as did court employees. The chart shows the survey ratings received by Judge Woodman.
- Ratings by jurors: Jurors who served in trials before Judge Woodman during 2018 and 2019 rated him 4.9 overall on a five-point scale. One juror commented, “He did a great job!”
- Professional activities: The Council’s review of Judge Woodman’s professional activities showed significant contributions to his community and to the administration of justice. Judge Woodman served as Deputy Presiding Judge for the Palmer courthouse, handling administrative matters. He served on the court system’s Security and Emergency Preparedness committees, and on a court rules committee working to improve the handling of juvenile delinquency and child welfare cases. He presided over the Palmer FIT Court, a court designed to build supports around families to reunify young children in the custody of the Office of Children’s Services with their families within one year. He spoke at a Valley symposium on increasing family contact (visitation) in child welfare cases. He maintained an official social media presence in order to promote understanding of the court system in general and the Palmer courthouse specifically.
- Other performance indicators: The Council’s review of other performance indicators, including Judge Woodman’s financial and conflict of interest statements, disqualifications from cases, and appellate reversal rates, raised no performance concerns.
- Timeliness: Alaska law requires judges’ pay be withheld if a decision is pending longer than six months. The Council verified that Judge Woodman was paid on schedule, and he certified that he had no untimely decisions.
- Ethics: There were no public disciplinary proceedings against Judge Woodman, and the Council’s review found no ethical concerns.
Judge Woodman’s Statements to the Public