While her boys stood watching, Deborah “Kim” Christopher took her fourth oath as she was sworn in as the District 20 Court Judge in Helena on Jan. 2.
Montana Surpreme Court Justice Mike McGrath swore her in, while sons Remington, 21, and Issac, 18, attended.
Christopher said that she expects to continue on as a judge for as long as she can.
“It’s been a privilege… There’s so much power that the people have that is invested in that robe, and getting to wear it for them, it’s awesome.”
Christopher, who was first elected to the bench in 2000, defeated Ashley Morigeau, a public defender in Lake County, in the midterm election last November.
While on the bench, Christopher has served as president of the Montana Judges’ Association. Prior to being a judge, she was a private attorney and appointed defense council. Christopher also served in the U.S. Army Judge Advocate General Corps as a Special Assistant U.S. Attorney and as a Captain. She also received her wings at U.S. Army Airborne School at Fort Benning, Georgia.
One thing that was different this last election season, Christopher said, was social media presence.
“This time, that and absentee ballots have completely changed the timing and what you do and what’s effective” along the campaign journey, she said.
This last election also saw the largest volunteer campaign committee Christopher has had, with just shy of 15 people.
“Each of them had their own particular skill” to contribute to the campaign, she said.
Christopher said that to balance the heavy subject matter of cases she sees over, she has found peace with yoga.
Christopher’s hobbies include making and eating chocolate chip cookie dough, but also baking cinnamon and caramel rolls, reading, sewing and attending yoga classes with friends.
Her family includes sons Remington and Isaac, as well as “son” Nick, daughter-in-law Lisa and their four kids; and father Dick Christopher. Christopher’s mother, Keenie, passed away in 2008.