The Midland Municipal Court will have a new presiding judge following an investiture ceremony for the Hon. Sharon Hatten on Wednesday, April 15.
The ceremony will take place at 3 p.m. at the Midland Municipal Court, located at 406 E. Illinois Ave. The oath of office will be administered by the Honorable Judge Robin D. Smith, who will retire this week after serving more than 30 years as the court’s presiding judge.
Judge Hatten was appointed by the Midland City Council as the Associate Municipal Court Judge in October 1992 and has served almost 23 years on the bench. Hatten began her career as an associate attorney in a small, general practice law firm in North Dallas before accepting a position in the City Attorney’s Office in 1990 and then becoming an Assistance County Attorney for Midland County in 1991.
Hatten has her liberal arts degree from The University of Texas at Austin and her Juris Doctorate from the Texas Tech School of Law. She also earned a Certificate of Judicial Development in Special Court Jurisdiction Skills from the National Judicial College in 2009. Hatten is licensed to practice before the U.S. Supreme Court and in the Federal Courts of the Northern and Western District Courts of Texas.
Hatten has served on many local, state and national boards including positions such as past Chair of the National Conference of Specialized Court Judges, and past president of the Texas Municipal Courts Association and the Texas Municipal Courts Education Center. She has also served as Chair of the State Bar of Texas Municipal Judges Section. Locally, she has served as President of the Junior Woman’s Association and Executive Women’s Association. She is a Sustainer in the Junior League and volunteers with Keep Midland Beautiful and Habitat for Humanity.
Judge Hatten has been the recipient of various service awards during her time on the bench including: Girl Scouts of the Desert Southwest Woman of Distinction Award, Junior League of Midland, Inc. Hand in Hand Award, Uptown Chapter of Business and Professional Women Midland Honoree of the Year, and four-time winner of the City of Midland’s Management Awards.
“It is very important as judges that we promote a positive image of the judiciary to the public,” Hatten said. “I believe if the experiences of citizens in municipal courts are positive, the image of the municipality and the criminal justice system as a whole is enhanced.”###
Media Contact: Public Information Officer Sara Bustilloz