Law school thanks Appeals Court Judge Robin Hunt for supporting externs

March 25, 2014

Judge J. Robin Hunt, an appellate court judge who has been devoted to nurturing aspiring lawyers through the Externship Program, will be honored by Seattle University School of Law.

Judge HuntThe law school's Externship Program will recognize Judge Hunt of Court of Appeals, Division II, at its annual event thanking site supervisors April 4. Judge Hunt has been an externship supervisor since 2006 and has had 16 Seattle University School of Law externs since then.

"Judge Hunt has been a fabulous supervisor for the fortunate students who were placed in her chambers," said Gillian Dutton, director of the Externship Program. "She has helped students improve their legal analysis and writing, advised them on their career goals, and introduced them to the Tacoma legal community. We are thankful for her years of attention and support."

 Judge Hunt was elected to the court in 1996 and will retire at the end of the year. She said one of the things she is most proud of over her accomplished career is the opportunity mentor SU Law students and watch them become exceptional practicing attorneys.

One  of those is Angeline Thomas '11, the staff attorney for the law school's Foreclosure Mediation and Outreach Project.

"Mentors are not easy to come by, and Judge Hunt went out of her way to introduce me to the practice of law as well as include me in her life outside of the courtroom," Thomas said. "I perfected my legal writing under her guidance, got advice about being a woman in the legal field, and gained a friendship that I am truly grateful for."

During her tenure on the bench, Judge Hunt has authored more than 1,000 majority opinions and dissents. She has frequently arranged to hold court in south sound school districts to promote greater understanding of the appellate process and has invited TVW to record the court's oral arguments in Tacoma.

She began her legal career in private practice, then was a King County deputy prosecutor for many years. As senior deputy, she created a specialized appellate unit, arguing numerous cases in state and federal appellate courts. She served as Bainbridge Island Municipal Court Judge Pro Tem (1982-1993) and Hearing Examiner (1985-1996), adjudicating local land use issues and administrative appeals.

The robust Externship Program at Seattle University School of Law offers placements at more than 400 sites in the United States and around the world. Externs work for judges, public defenders' offices, advocacy agencies, technology companies and even sports teams. The experience eases the transition into practicing law, instills professionalism, and increases awareness of social justice concepts. A faculty supervisor and practicing lawyer guide each extern.

The event honoring Judge Hunt is at 5 p.m. Friday, April 4, at the School of Law Annex. Space is limited, and RSVPs are required at 206-398-4006 or