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OJPA elects Thompson as new president

ThompsonWally Thompson, justice of the peace for Columbia County, was elected as president of the of the Oregon Justices of the Peace Association at the organization’s annual fall conference in late September in Springfield.

Thompson has been a judge in Columbia County since 1996. He currently presides over the Columbia County Justice Court and two different municipal courts at three different locations.

As president of the OJPA, Thompson said one of his primary responsibilities will be keeping judges throughout the state informed of legislative changes.

“This association really has a good committee to try to deal with [legislative] changes. It’s a matter of keeping us all updated and in touch with each other,” he said. “I take it very seriously. It’s so important that we’re constantly out there, battling with legislature to look out for the people.”

So far, Thompson said he has been working with the organization’s various committees to appoint a chairperson to each.

Thompson has been a member of both the OJPA and the Oregon Municipal Judges Association for a total of 18 years. He is also an alternate state representative for Oregon with the National Judges Association.

On how he came to be elected president of the organization, Thompson said humbly, “Small group, my turn.”

Candace Hissong, executive director of the National Judges Association, said, “I have worked with Judge Thompson through the years, and he has served all of these organizations with dedication and diligence.”

Joe Charter, OJPA’s most recent former president, said, “I’m pleased to hand off the responsibility [of the office] and happy to know that the organization is in good hands with Judge Thompson at the helm and a strong board backing him up.”

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