Meet your candidates!
It’s an election year, and here at Plano Profile we strive to connect our community; part of that is helping educate the community and giving candidates a platform to address the community.
All of the following opinions are that of the candidate, not Plano Profile. Any and all candidates have the opportunity to fill out our questionnaire to be published on our website, contact us at [email protected] for more information.
Meet Jennifer Edgeworth, who is running for Judge of 219th District Court in Collin County as a republican.
Tell us a little bit about yourself and your background.
I have seventeen years of experience as an attorney managing complex lawsuits involving millions of dollars in damages, and setting budgets for those cases. I have been the lead attorney on over 200 cases, have represented individuals in family law matters, and have served as a guardian ad litem to protect the interests of children.
Plano is my home, and I am active community volunteer. I’m a sustainer in the Junior League of Collin County, chaired Santa’s Workshop and the Lights at Legacy Tree Lighting for the Women’s Auxiliary of Children’s Medical Center, and am a graduate of Leadership Plano.
I graduated from Baylor University with a joint MBA and law degree in 1999, and obtained a Bachelor of Business Administration degree from Texas Christian University (TCU), cum laude, in 1996. I was recognized by TCU as its Distinguished Student of the Year in 1999, and the Outstanding Young Professional in 2009.
I have served as a Trial Academy Instructor for the Collin County Bar Association, am on the Board of Directors for the Collin County Women Lawyers Association, and was recognized by D Magazine as a best lawyer under 40 earlier in my career.
I am happily married to my husband Chris, and we are proud parents of a son in Plano ISD. We are members of Chase Oaks Church and enjoy the outdoors and spending family time together.
Why are you running for office?
I believe that the trial court system we have in the United States must give everyone a fair opportunity to resolve disputes that impact their life, liberty, and property. I also believe that judges should be held to a high standard of transparency, must have integrity, and must follow the law.
I have been leading and managing high stakes lawsuits for seventeen years, and truly have a passion for the courtroom, the rules of evidence and the process of litigation.
What makes you the most qualified person for this position?
I believe in the rule of law and that all individuals must be treated equally in the courtroom, regardless of whether they are a celebrity, elected official, or someone who doesn’t know where their next paycheck will come from.
In addition, I have the most civil law experience of the candidates. As Collin County grows and more corporations move their principal place of business in Collin County, the number of civil law cases filed in Collin County will continue to increase, and this court needs someone with strong civil law experience.
Also, the overwhelming majority of cases filed in this court are civil and family law cases, which follow the same rules of procedure and evidence that I have spent my career in the courtroom upholding.
What issues are your top priorities? Name three.
What changes would you implement and how?
This court must be run more efficiently and promote fairness and fiscal responsibility. Some of the best ways to expedite trials and cut down on litigation costs are for judges to issue a strong scheduling order and set a trial date early on, hear and rule on motions promptly, not allow for discovery disputes to drag on, and not allow for multiple continuances of a trial date.
In my experience, litigation costs grow exponentially when judges do not impose deadlines on parties to move their cases forward and will not hear or will not rule on motions and discovery disputes.
The District Courts should also work hard to ensure that criminal cases are resolved in a reasonable amount of time. The longer the time that a person jailed just await trial, the more money that the taxpayers are spending. It costs $80 a day to house a prisoner in the Collin County jail.
In criminal cases, this District Court consistently has prisoners who have been in jail more than a year without a trial or resolution, which costs the taxpayers a significant amount of money and is not justice served for the person in jail or for the victim seeking a determination of innocence or guilt.
What factors in your life have shaped your beliefs?
My grandfather was a retired Colonel in the Air Force, and instilled in my family a deep respect for God, country, and family. I am a Christian. And I believe in adhering to the language of the U.S. Constitution and the Texas Constitution.
What do you believe should be the function of government?
I believe in limited government, free enterprise, and that the strength of our nation is based on the Constitution and protecting an individual’s freedom and dignity.