Honorable Judge John Schmude: A Record of Success After His First Term; Other Distinguished Conservatives Who Value Every Vote Are Also Highlighted Inside this "Ground-Game" Edition of Houston Business Connections Newspaper©
First, when Judge Schmude took office in January 2015, he inherited a court with a tremendous backlog of cases. After his first year in office, the 247th District Court disposed of more than 4,000 cases, more than any other family court in Harris County! The 247th District Court was repeatedly recognized in 2015 by the District Clerk’s Office for being the most efficient court in Harris County for electronic filing. This was an impressive accomplishment for a new Judge that was criticized by many within his own party for lacking the experience necessary to preside over this very important Court.
In accomplishing this objective, Judge Schmude implemented several innovative measures to promote efficiency, including the launch of an express docket, which allows any lawyer or litigant with a matter that requires five minutes or less of the court’s time to be heard before the call of the main docket. This has resulted in a reduction in the number of cases heard during the main docket and has allowed lawyers and litigants with matters of short duration to get in and out of court quickly, thereby reducing costs and promoting efficiency. He has also implemented a strong mediation policy – to encourage amicable solutions for families – and has allowed litigants to prove up settlement agreements any time during the day that the court is in session and available. This User-Friendly Court has won the overwhelming respect of the family law bar as Judge Schmude was rated as either “Excellent” or “Above Average” by nearly three-quarters of family law practitioners in the most recent HBA Bar Poll in every single judicial evaluation category.
Also, Judge Schmude, and his Associate Judge, Paula Vlahakos, have done an impressive job in presiding over CPS cases. CPS cases disproportionately affect minority families, and it is extremely important to have judges that take their gatekeeping role seriously. In other words, it’s important to have judges that act quickly to protect children from abuse and neglect while at the same time protect the constitutional rights of parents from illegal removals, which can decimate families and traumatize children. Judge Schmude demonstrated clearly his gatekeeping role in 2016 after it was apparent that a father’s constitutional rights had been grossly violated by an illegal removal. In this case, he rendered a scathing sanctions order in which he ordered CPS to pay nearly $30,000 in fees and ordered all CPS personnel associated with the case to read the U.S. Constitution and the Bill of Rights to the Texas Constitution. Having a Judge that is not intimidated by powerful government agencies and who takes his gatekeeping role seriously is a benefit to all of our families. As a result of this case, Judge Schmude earned the prestigious Defender of the Family Award from the THSC. In order to serve the interests of justice, it’s so critical to have judges that ensure a level playing field: from powerful governmental agencies all the way down to the poorest litigant who cannot afford an attorney.
As he nears the end of his first term, Judge Schmude has demonstrated the ability to effectively and efficiently preside over a large and complex docket. Secondly, he has shown his conviction to treat all litigants with dignity and respect. Lastly, he has demonstrated a fair and impartial temperament and a conviction to make decisions based not on expediency but based merely on the desire to do what is right. Can we expect more from a family court judge?
Judge John Schmude will be fighting off the challenge of Democratic (nominee) Attorney Janice Berg in the race for District Judge, 247th Judicial District Court in Harris County, Texas on Tuesday, November 6, 2018. Early voting will begin on Monday, October 22, 2018, and end on Friday, November 2, 2018.
Attorney Melanie Flowers is seeking to beat Democratic (nominee) Attorney Sandra J. Peake in the race for District Judge, 257th Judicial District Court in Harris County, Texas on Tuesday, November 6, 2018. Early voting will begin on Monday, October 22, 2018, and end on Friday, November 2, 2018.
Attorney Charles Johnson will be seeking to beat Democratic (nominee) Attorney Amy Martin in the race for District Judge, 263rd Judicial District Court on Tuesday, November 6, 2018. Early voting will begin on Monday, October 22, 2018, and end on Friday, November 2, 2018.
Judge Angelina Gooden will be fighting off the challenge of Democratic (nominee) Attorney Barbara J. Stalder in the race for District Judge, 280th Judicial District Court in Harris County, Texas on Tuesday, November 6, 2018. Early voting will begin on Monday, October 22, 2018, and end on Friday, November 2, 2018.
Former Judge Clyde Raymond Leuchtag will be seeking to unseat Democratic (incumbent) Judge George Barnstone in the race for Judge, Harris County Civil Court at Law No. 1 on Tuesday, November 6, 2018. Early voting will begin on Monday, October 22, 2018, and end on Friday, November 2, 2018.