On Monday, November 11, 2019, local trial attorney Noah Oswald announced his candidacy for District Court Judge in Orange and Chatham County. Noah is a graduate of Orange High School and a local graduate of NCCU Law School. He is currently serving the community on the Orange County Affordable Housing Board and volunteers his time in a variety of professional roles including the North Carolina Bar Association’s Professionalism Committee, a past-president of the Orange County Bar Association who continues to serve on the OCBA Board, treasurer and member of the Board of Directors for the local affiliate of Justice Initiatives, Inc., as well as service on the Orange County Courthouse Committee, the Judicial Equity Committee, and the biannual Professional Education Committee.
Referring to his broad courtroom experience and a lifetime of engagement with the local Courts, Noah noted the important role judges play in preventing child abuse, protecting victims of domestic violence and ending drunk driving. Addressing the role of Judges in our community, he calls for a balance of empathy, understanding and compassion with the demands of law and justice:
“A judge must be empathetic to the needs and concerns of those individuals who stand before them and be willing to take each case, each person, individually and make decisions which apply the law and satisfy the demands of justice. Sometimes this requires punishment and consequence, others mercy and discretion, but in all cases respect must be shown for individual dignity and decisions must convey compassion.”
Building on the strength of local judicial and law enforcement stakeholders, Noah is looking to enhance and expand community focused partnerships and resources to improve the lives of justice-involved citizens including enhancing the resources of the Criminal Justice Resource Department of Orange County; combating economic factors such as housing costs, including efforts to bring emergency housing for victims of domestic violence to our counties; improving communication between law enforcement and education leaders to keep our schools safe while limiting early exposure to the justice system; and fully utilizing our alternative treatment courts to end the criminalization of poverty.
Acknowledging the need for judges who embrace their role as leaders, Noah has committed to balancing courtroom responsibility with active community leadership:
“While acting on the bench, I will dutifully fulfil the oath of a judge to exercise wisdom and discretion in accurately applying the law; however, off the bench, important conversations need to be had and improvement made around issues like access to justice, bond reform, and judicial and racial equity. Leadership is more than saying what needs to be said, it is doing what needs to be done.”
More information about Noah and his candidacy will be available at wwww.oswaldforjudge.com.