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Wiles in race for judge position

Legal issues — The deputy district attorney first to announce race for Judge Cal Tichenors spot on the circuit court


McMINNVILLE – Following the oft-traveled path from prosecutor to magistrate, Yamhill County Deputy District Attorney Ladd Wiles has officially filed as a candidate in the 2014 election for Yamhill County Circuit judge.

The University of Oregon and Lewis & Clark Northwestern School of Law graduate hopes to fill Position 4 on the court, which will be left vacant after the retirement of Cal Tichenor. Tichenor is not eligible to run for a third six-year term in 2014 because he will turn 75 next year and the Oregon constitution dictates judges must step down at the end of the year in which they reach that age.by: - - Ladd Wiles

“He’s had a long and distinguished career, not only as a judge, but as an attorney,” Wiles said of Tichenor. “He also came out of the district attorney’s office here, but before that he was in the JAG corps and also a military judge. He’s been a judge for a really long time and I’d say those are big shoes to fill, but I believe I have the qualifications to do it.”

Wiles wasted no time declaring his intentions, filing the paperwork with the Secretary of State Sept. 12 — the first day candidates were eligible to enter the race.

“I’ve been a state prosecutor for over 15 years and as a prosecutor you spend a lot of time in the courtroom,” Wiles said. “You’re very familiar with the court’s processes and how it works and functions. I think if you look at the general docket, the majority of it its criminal law, but I’ve done also the juvenile work, support enforcement, civil forfeiture and some other things.”

Tichenor attended the University of Oregon for both of his degrees, graduating with a BS in accounting in 1961 and a JD from the School of Law in 1964.

A retired colonel in the U.S. Army, Tichenor served in the Judge Advocate General Corp and as a judge before retiring in November, 1994. Tichenor was also forced into retirement from the Army after serving the maximum of 30 years.

Tichenor immediately transitioned into the Yamhill County District Attorney’s office as a DDA and served for eight years before running successful campaign for his current bench seat in 2002, two years after losing an election to Ronald Stone for Position 2 on the court.

After being re-elected in 2008, Tichenor said he was unsure if he would serve out the entirety of his second term, but never saw any reason to retire before it expired. He added that he has no problem with the age limit mandated by the state constitution, but said if he were eligible, that he would probably run for a third term.

“The whole aspect of what I’ve done in the Army, what I’ve done at the district attorney’s office and now as a judge, has been extremely worthwhile, trying to do the right thing in serving the public,” he said.

Tichenor stated he will continue to serve part time as a “Plan B” judge to fill in when the court needs help covering vacations.

“I’ll come back periodically for the next five years after that and then play a little more golf,” Tichenor said. “I’ll find out if there’s something else I want to do besides rest and sleep in in the mornings.”




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