Only 2 apply to fill empty seat in Rutherford County Circuit Court

Jan 08, 2020 at 02:11 pm by Michelle Willard

Rutherford County Circuit Court vacancy

Tennessee's Trial Court Vacancy Commission has sent its recommendations to the governor to fill vacancy was created by the retirement of the Honorable Royce Taylor.

But there was a problem.

Only two people applied and the commission is required to provide three names to the governor to choose from. 

Under the law, the governor can now fill the vacancy with any person who is qualified to serve as a judge of the circuit court in the 16th judicial district. The Commission sent the two applications it did receive to the governor.

Those applications were from Bonita Jo Atwood and Richard W. Rucker.

Atwood works as a trial attorney with Atwood & Moore where she mostly practices family law, litigation (Contract, Estates, Personal Injury), and business formations and transactions. She has been licensed in Tennessee since 1986. 

Rucker most recently worked as assistant city attorney and risk manager for Murfreesboro. After he retired in 2019, he re-entered private practice and developed his practice as a mediator. He was licensed in 1971.

Taylor announced last year that he will officially retire March 3 and the Trial Court Vacancy Commission began accepting applications for his seat on the Circuit Court in the 16th Judicial District, which covers Rutherford and Cannon counties.

To read the letter from the Trial Court Vacancy Commission to Governor Lee, click here


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