Archived Version: November 2, 2010

An information resource for Washington voters



Show My Elections

Supreme Court

Court of Appeals

Ratings and Endorsements

Media Stories

Candidates A-Z

Judges A-Z

Voting for Judges: FAQ


Election Archives

Support VotingforJudges


Edsonya Charles


Seattle Municipal Court

Position One

Edsonya Charles

It has been my privilege to serve as your Seattle Municipal Court Judge since 2004, and presiding judge since 2008.

Independent and uncompromised The role of a judge is to serve the public and make informed, thoughtful decisions, free from outside interests. An independent judiciary is one of the key rights afforded citizens. I am dedicated to the principle of open access to justice for all. That means ensuring everyone who appears before the court is treated with respect and receives a full and fair hearing. The Municipal Court is the “people’s court,” where average people are most likely to encounter the justice system. I consider that every time I enter the courtroom.

Service to our community, commitment to justice I have built my career around a commitment to serving our community. The courtroom is not simply divided into victims and accused persons. It takes a compassionate mind and legal experience to find the best resolution. Before serving as judge, I led the Seattle Human Services Coalition, where I worked to improve services to Seattle’s most vulnerable residents and strengthen collaboration among human service providers. As a federal prosecutor, I prosecuted cases against criminals who stole from working people. I also served as deputy legal counsel to Mayor Nickels, advising on public safety and human service issues. I am Vice-Chair of the King County Regional Law Safety and Justice Committee, a coalition of judges, prosecutors, defense attorneys, human service professionals, law enforcement and local government working together to solve problems facing our communities. As a Municipal Court Judge, I have presided over thousands of criminal and civil cases.

Experience as a reformer A commitment to justice means making the courts work for people. Our court is nationally recognized and I am proud to have helped shape our system. I am a reformer implementing alternatives to incarceration, saving jail costs and allowing offenders to give back to affected communities. In these tough fiscal times, I have worked to make our courts more accountable, implementing reforms that increased efficiencies and lowered costs without compromising justice. I’ve twice been awarded Vice-President Al Gore’s National Partnership for Reinventing Government for increasing government responsiveness and efficiency.

I would appreciate your support this November.

Supporters include: Dr. Constance Rice, Bob Santos, Greg Nickels, Pramila Jayapal, Sen. Joe McDermott, Sarah Mack, Bob Watt, Charles Royer, and Judges Fred Bonner, Judith Hightower, George Holifield, Kimi Kondo.

Official web site:  
Opponent: Ed McKenna
Questionnaire responses: For King County Democrats

Candidate ratings:
King County Bar Association Qualified Exceptionally
Well Qualified
Municipal League of King County Adequate Very Good
Joint Asian Judicial
Evaluations Committee
Well Qualified *
Washington Women Lawyers Qualified Exceptionally
Well Qualified

Important note! Each of these organizations uses its own standards and rating terms when evaluating candidates; please check their pages for further information. We do not have ratings for candidates with an asterisk (*), and the reasons vary. Some evaluations may still be in process, or we might not have received them yet; some candidates may not have been offered an opportunity to participate, or they may have declined to participate.

Finance report:

Edsonya Charles
Campaign Contribs
10/27/2010 Contributors to
Edsonya Charles
Supporting Charles or Opposing McKenna
Ed McKenna
Campaign Contribs
10/27/2010 Contributors to
Ed McKenna
Pers. Funds $17,662.68
Loans $1,987.32
Citizens for
Judicial Excellence
10/27/2010 Supporting
Ed McKenna
Citizens for
Judicial Excellence
10/27/2010 Opposing
Edsonya Charles
Supporting McKenna or Opposing Charles

Media stories:
    October 28, 2010
Seattle Times   Former Mayor Nickels offers support to Charles in judicial race
Seattle Times   County bar association says judge broke rules by accusing opponent
Seattle P-I  
Seattle Weekly   Edsonya Charles, Muni Court Judge in Heated Reelection Race, Gets Unconvincing Rebuke From King County Bar Association
    October 27, 2010
Seattle Times   DUI lawyers spend $74,000 to back Ed McKenna in court race
    October 15, 2010
Seattle P-I  
    October 14, 2010
Seattle Times   New allegations in muni court race
Seattle Times   Judicial challenger says opponent broke bar association rules
Seattle P-I  
    October 6, 2010
Seattle Times   Presiding judge of Seattle Municipal Court targeted for defeat
    October 5, 2010
KING 5   DUI attorneys accused of breaking rules in judicial campaign
    August 19, 2010
Seattle Times   Municipal Court candidate wants to criticize his opponent in voters guide statement, P.O. Box 1460, Silverdale, WA  98383
Write to

As the election approaches, will include ratings and endorsements from numerous organizations. We provide this information so that voters will be better informed about the candidates. We do not rate or endorse any candidates; the ratings and endorsements of organizations included at this site reflect the views of those individual organizations and not necessarily the views of or its sponsors.