Elma attorney named Hoquiam Municipal Court Judge

Elma attorney Jean Cotton has been appointed Hoquiam Municipal Court Judge, replacing Judge Andrea Vingo who resigned earlier this year.

“After interviewing a number of applicants I will appoint Jean Cotton to that position,” said Hoquiam Mayor Ben Winkelman at Monday evening’s City Council meeting.

Cotton has run for Superior Court “a couple of times over the years, and often works in the Superior Court as a guardian ad litum (a person appointed by the court to represent the best interests of an individual for a specific purpose and period of time) and judicial officer – basically a pro tem judge — and court commissioner, so she does have some bench experience,” said Winkelman.

Cotton was appointed Municipal Court Judge in 1995 and served for about two years.

“I think she’ll do a really nice job for us and hopefully we can figure out a good plan to get our court system back and opened up in some fashion,” said Winkelman. He said Cotton has been invited to participate in a department head meeting as each department will discuss the needs of each city department to reopen for business safely and effectively.

The council unanimously approved the appointment. Cotton will serve what would have been the remainder of Vingo’s term, through the end of 2021, said Hoquiam City Attorney Steve Johnson.