Office: For Judge of the Fourth District Court of Appeals
Unexpired Term Ending 2/8/2023
Social Media: https://www.facebook.com/BrooksforJudge
Occupation: Attorney & Village Solicitor
Education: J.D. from Vermont Law School; M.S. from the College of Charleston; B.S. from Xavier University
Work Experience: I began my legal career as a staff attorney with Southeastern Ohio Legal Services, serving families, seniors, and others in need through direct litigation as well as community advocacy. The attorneys, paralegals, and support staff I worked with were organized through the National Organization for Legal Service Workers (NOLSW-UAW Local 2320), and I served as a shop steward for many years and then as President of the local chapter. In 2012, I became a small business owner, opening my own practice in Chillicothe and in 2014 I joined the law firm Seif & McNamee, LLC. I have been a mainly civil litigator for over 13 years. I am certified by the Ohio Supreme Court as an Advanced Family Conflict Mediator, Guardian ad Litem, and Parenting Coordinator. I am also the Solicitor for the Village of Beaver. I am licensed to practice law in the State of Ohio as well as the United States District Court for the Southern District of Ohio. I have also been an educator, teaching political science at Ohio University – Chillicothe Branch, and leadership and ecology through Hocking College in Columbus and Andros Island, Bahamas.
Family: I am married to Luke Feeney, who is the Mayor of Chillicothe. We have two children, two cats and two dogs.
Affiliations: I served on a number of community and student volunteer groups while in Charleston and Vermont. I have been an active member of a number of boards including the Ross County Coalition Against Domestic Violence, the Ross County Humane Society, the YMCA of Ross County, and the St. Mary Catholic Church Parish Council. I have volunteered with Southeastern Ohio Legal Services and take on pro bono work for local non-profits. I have been a volunteer attorney mentor through the Ohio Supreme Court’s Lawyer to Lawyer program. I have been a member of the Ohio State Bar Association, and the Ross County, Jackson County, and Vinton County Bar Associations.
Endorsements: OHIO AFL-CIO; ATHENS COUNTY DEMOCRATIC PARTY; INTERNATIONAL UNION OF PAINTERS & ALLIED TRADES – DISTRICT COUNCIL NO. 6; LAWRENCE COUNTY DEMOCRATIC PARTY; UNITED AUTO WORKERS REGION 2B; ADAMS COUNTY DEMOCRATIC PARTY
Bar Association Ratings: N/A
(1) List your judicial experience (courts and years)
I do not have direct judicial experience.
(2) What about your non-judicial legal experience qualifies you to be a judge?
Judges should be fair and thorough and be able to effectively communicate. My experiences and background have prepared me to do that. As described above, I have over 13 years of experience as a trial attorney and I’ve seen all sides of the issues — I have represented plaintiffs and defendants; mothers, fathers, grandparents and children. I have represented landlords and tenants; creditors and debtors; I have represented municipalities, organizations, juvenile delinquents, and victims of abuse. I have been a mediator and a guardian ad litem for children and incompetent adults.
If judges are to be impartial, it is important to know that they can see all sides and have a broad perspective on the cases that come before them. My diverse experience as a litigator and advocate allows me to do that. I have been an educator and taught legal writing and I have worked on a number of appellate cases, including briefs to the Ohio Supreme Court. Part of being a good judge is communicating well. Appellate judges do not see the witnesses testify or hear the attorneys make closing arguments. They review transcripts and briefs, research and analyze the law and the facts, and the review the decisions below. The appellate courts speak through their written decisions and the judges should be able to communicate to the litigants, the public, and the lower courts, something I’ve done in as an attorney and educator.
(3) Why are you running for this particular court seat?
The goal I have for every client is to be empowered to take on their challenges, win or lose. I have been an advocate for people and stood by them during their toughest struggles. It is rewarding, but I know I have more to give. I have a passion for fairness and justice, and I believe our courts should be more compassionate and accessible, and should be shielded from any appearance of outside influence. I decided to run because of my desire to help people, but also to bring compassion, fairness, and a broader range of experience to our appellate district. Public service is in my background and in my heart. I want to continue to make a difference in our communities and our justice system by serving as Judge in our 14-county district.