Tim Leonard, the chief deputy public defender for the 10th Judicial District, has announced that he will seek election as circuit judge for the 10th Judicial District, Division 1, in the upcoming nonpartisan election on March 3, 2020.

The district covers Ashley, Bradley, Chicot, Desha and Drew counties in Southeast Arkansas.

“After considerable prayer, encouragement from my family, friends and peers I am proud to announce my candidacy for Circuit Judge, Leonard said in a news release announcing his candidacy. “I am running to ensure that the Circuit Courtroom is a level playing-field where all parties, regardless of their claim or social status, are treated impartially and have access to a knowledgeable judge that will rule swiftly and in accordance with the law. In my career I have represented plaintiffs and defendants in civil cases, the wealthy and the poor, mothers, fathers and children in custody cases, businesses and consumers, I’ve served as a special prosecutor and I’ve represented criminal defendants. The diversity of my legal experience makes me uniquely qualified to treat everyone equally, impartially and with civility.”

Leonard graduated from Arkansas State University and then attended law school at the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville. He was in private practice in Hamburg from 2007 until 2018, when he accepted the position of chief deputy public defender for the 10th Judicial District.

Leonard has practiced civil litigation, family law, and criminal defense throughout Southeast Arkansas and has been certified to represent children in cases involving child custody. He was selected to the Mid-South Rising Stars list every year from 2012 to 2017 by Super Lawyers. He served in the Arkansas Bar Association House of Delegates from 2007 to 2013 and was elected chairman of the Criminal Law Section of the Arkansas Bar Association in 2011. He served as treasurer (2013-2014) and president (2014-2015) of the Southeast Arkansas Legal Institute.

In addition to his law practice, Leonard has served as an adjunct instructor at University of Arkansas at Monticello-CTC. He is a past president of the Hamburg Rotary Club (2011-2012), a member of the Hamburg Chamber of Commerce, and currently serves as chairman of the Hamburg Planning Commission. He is an active volunteer in Parents in Education and also volunteers with both the Hamburg Baseball Commission and the Ashley County Boys & Girls Club as a youth sports coach.

Leonard is a member of First United Methodist Church of Hamburg where he teaches Sunday school and is a teacher for the Pioneer Clubs, a weekly after school program for elementary school children that is a Christ-centered program aimed to integrate spiritual and personal development.

Leonard and his wife, Rebecca, an early childhood speech and language pathologist, live in Hamburg and are the parents of two children, Payne and Rory Beth.