|Current Court Information:|
|Washington State Supreme Court|
|Undergraduate:||Duke University, 1971|
|Law School:||University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 1975|
|Candidate for:||Washington Supreme Court|
|Election information 2012:|
|Primary date:||August 7, 2012|
|Election date:||November 6, 2012|
Susan Owens is a justice on the Washington Supreme Court, serving in Position 2. She was elected to this position on November 7, 2000, and was re-elected in 2006 and 2012. Her current term ends in 2018.
Prior to joining the Washington Supreme Court, Owens served as Chief Judge of the Quileute Tribe for five years and Chief Judge of the Lower Elwha/S'Klallam Tribe for over six years. She was a district judge in Clallam County for 19 years. Owens was elected to the Washington Supreme Court in 2000.
Awards and associations
Justice Owens currently serves on the Washington Supreme Court's Rules Committee, the Bench-Bar-Press Committee, and the Board for Judicial Administration. She is also the chairperson of the Washington State Interpreter Commission, and is the Washington Supreme Court's chairperson for the Fall Judicial Conference. In addition, she serves on the Washington State Bar Association's Leadership Institute Advisory Board and the Committee on Public Defense.
In the past, Justice Owens has been President-Elect, Vice President, Secretary-Treasurer, and Board member of the District & Municipal Court Judges' Association (DMCJA). She was also the co-founder and Chairman of the Rural Courts Committee.
- See also: Washington judicial elections, 2012
- Rated as Well Qualified by the King County Bar Association.
- Rated as Qualified by the Justice for Washington Foundation
|Candidate||Incumbent||Seat||Primary %||Election %|
|Susan Owens||Position #2||46%||59.8%|
|Stephen Johnson||Position #2||34.7%||40.2%|
|Richard Smith||Position #2||5.5%|
|Norman J. Ericson||Position #2||5.4%|
|Michael Johnson||Position #2||8.3%|
Intoxication and liability
In 2004, the Washington Supreme Court ruled that a tavern owner can be held liable for a vehicle accident by a tavern patron, "even though the plaintiff proved only that the customer was 'apparently,' not 'obviously,' intoxicated." Justice Owens wrote for the majority, "Given the distinction that the average person could be expected to draw between the phrases 'apparently intoxicated' and 'obviously intoxicated,' the Lucky Seven Saloon recognized that the latter standard was more favorable, permitting the commercial seller to serve patrons until they were 'obviously drunk,' not merely 'apparently drunk.'" In Sanders' dissent, he argued that this standard is beyond the previous standard: "The majority goes where no court has gone before."
In October 2012, political science professors Adam Bonica and Michael Woodruff of Stanford University attempted to determine the partisan ideology of state supreme court justices in their paper, State Supreme Court Ideology and 'New Style' Judicial Campaigns. A score above 0 indicated a more conservative leaning ideology while scores below 0 are more liberal. Owens received a Campaign finance score (CFscore) of -1.4, indicating a liberal ideological leaning. This is more liberal than the average CF score of -0.91 that justices received in Washington. The study is based on data from campaign contributions by judges themselves, the partisan leaning of contributors to the judges or, in the absence of elections, the ideology of the appointing body (governor or legislature). This study is not a definitive label of a justice, but an academic gauge of various factors.
- Washington Courts: Press Release Detail, "Monday's Supreme Court Inauguration to Mark the First Time in State History for Female Majority, Chief Justice," January 10, 2012
- Re-Elect Justice Susan Owens - Washington Supreme Court, campaign website
- Washington Courts: Susan Owens
- Project Vote Smart, Justice Susan Owens (WA)
- Follow the Money: Susan Owens 2006
- The Newspaper, "Washington Supreme Court Upholds Forced DUI Blood Draws," September 17, 2009
- The Washington Supreme Court blog, an unofficial blog that covers the Washington State Supreme Court and its justices
- Washington Courts: Susan Owens
- Re-Elect Justice Susan Owens campaign website, About Justice Owens
- Washington Secretary of State, "2012 Primary Results by County," August 28, 2012
- Washington Secretary of State, 2012 Candidates who have filed
- Washington Secretary of State, 2012 General Election Results - Judicial
- King County Bar Association, 2012 Judicial Election Ratings
- Justice for Washington Foundation, Rating of Judicial Candidates
- Washington Secretary of State, 2006 General Election Results (dead link)
- Follow the Money: Susan Owens.
- Goliath, "'Apparent' intoxication triggers tavern's liability, Washington court holds."
- Stanford University, "State Supreme Court Ideology and 'New Style' Judicial Campaigns," October 31, 2012
|Former||Gerry Alexander • Richard Sanders • Tom Chambers • James Johnson (Washington) • William H. Williams • William C. Goodloe • Bobbe Bridge •|