Justice Barbara Webb believes her experience qualifies her for Chief Justice role

by Roby Brock ([email protected]) 1,112 views 

Justice Barbara Webb.

Arkansas Supreme Court Justice Barbara Webb said her career background has provided her with immense diversity in being the best choice to serve as the state’s next Chief Justice.

Webb, who appeared on this week’s Capitol View program, is seeking the seat held by Chief Justice John Dan Kemp, who is retiring. Justices Karen Baker and Rhonda Wood are also seeking the Chief Justice position.

“I feel like my career path has led me to this opportunity. From being a courtroom attorney in private practice to then being a prosecuting attorney in the courtroom, and then to coming on the court as a Supreme Court Justice, I just feel like the next step or the right step for me where I can give back is to be Chief Justice,” Webb said.

All three women running for Chief Justice are in the middle of eight-year terms, meaning the two losers would still serve on the court after the election. Webb said she didn’t expect any awkwardness post-election regardless of the outcome.

“We have a good, collegiate relationship. Of course, we’ve been in summer recess since some of these announcements have been made. But I think that we respect each other for the attributes we each bring to the court. And I don’t think it’s surprised anyone that the three of us got in the race,” she said.

In addition to her experience as a prosecutor, workers comp judge, and Supreme Court Justice, Webb said she thinks utilizing technology to improve access and the speed of justice will be a primary focus if she wins.

“We have to move the court forward for a new generation that is very comfortable with technology. And that’s where I see the next Chief Justice or my role as being is helping move the court forward to embrace technology to make sure that we are having court, that people have access to the courts, that we can provide that maybe in a more affordable way because of technology,” Webb said.

“When I was prosecutor, I came in with a big backlog of cases. And I believe, as Martin Luther King said, ‘Justice delayed is justice denied.’ So I think we have to have a good case management system in place, and the court is working towards that right now,” she added.

You can watch Webb’s full interview in the video below.