San Juan Journal Letters to the Editor | July 9

Supports Linde for Superior Court
My husband, Bob, and I are voting for John Linde to retain his position as Superior Court judge of San Juan County. Our reasons are many. For purposes of brevity, however, one reason stands out: he has 21 years experience as a judge and is endorsed as the only qualified candidate by over 30 sitting judges from through out western Washington.

That’s why John Linde is our choice this Aug. 19.

Susan Wingate
Friday Harbor

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I supported John Linde for Superior Court judge in the governor’s appointment process. I wrote a letter of support and met with Richard Mitchell, general counsel to the governor, when he came to Friday Harbor to interview local citizens as a part of the appointment process.

That process included interviews before four to five minority lawyer associations, interviews of 30-40 local citizens, and interviews with both the governor’s general counsel and the governor. We know the outcome of that process. I continue to enthusiastically wholeheartedly support Judge Linde in this, the county’s first election of a Superior Court judge.

First, John was an elected District Court judge for five terms in a small county where contention is a way of life. If he had acted in any way other than honestly, he would never have been elected five times.

Second, he has demonstrated a passion for objectivity, listening to both sides, rendering decisions which follow the law and not a personal judicial philosophy.

Third, despite his experience, he has retained a life-long commitment to learn more. He has attended Washington Judicial College. His life has been one of constant work to improve, to know more, to be the best that he can be.

Personally that is what I want in a judge. I hope that you will join me, the governor and her general counsel, 30 judges in the North Sound region, the two judges who served as Superior Court judges for San Juan County previously and support John Linde for judge.

Also, please remember to vote in the August election; there will be no general election for this position.

Ralph Hahn
San Juan Island

Supports Gaylord for Superior Court
We have known Randy Gaylord for more than 10 years. In that time, we have seen him conduct himself with honor and integrity in every possible scenario.

Whether he is dealing with the public in regard to a county matter, or in private with friends and family, Randy is consistently honest and fair. As islanders, we could not have a better advocate for the preservation of what we consider precious.

In his years as county prosecutor, Randy has accomplished much in terms of environmental and human rights. Two examples are: his Supreme Court victory in banning Jet Skis within the county and his creation of an effective crime victims unit.

The breadth of his legal knowledge and his ability to tackle every challenge with honor, integrity, honesty, respect and fairness makes Randy our best choice for San Juan County Superior Court judge.

In August, please join us in voting for Randy Gaylord for San Juan County Superior Court judge.

Lance Evans, Eastsound
Janet Brownell, Eastsound

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How do we pick a judge? It is such a serious choice — not one we get to make very often.

Both of our candidates for superior court judge are well-educated lawyers; both have approval from various bar associations; both are known for working in support of young people in their local communities.

For me, the decision comes down to looking at how they have spent their careers. Randy Gaylord has worked for 14 years as a publicly elected county prosecuting attorney. Always, always, working in the public interest.

Randy did an excellent job making sure this county was the first one in the country to keep jet skis away from our shorelines. He has worked tirelessly to uphold our land use rules; to help us maintain the openness and natural beauty we so value here on the islands.

His opponent has worked just as tirelessly in the interest of private developers; to repeatedly challenge land use laws, always seeking that wedge to interpret the rules in favor of the private client. Of course, we need both types of attorneys, but I would rather vote for a judge who has spent his career working primarily in the public interest. I will vote for Gaylord.

Lee Sturdivant
Friday Harbor

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I am writing to urge you to vote for Randy Gaylord who I feel is an excellent choice for the new San Juan County Superior Court Judge position.

As San Juan County prosecuting attorney, Randy has provided thoughtful and well-researched advice to the County Commissioners and has been easily accessible to his fellow citizens to discuss and explain his legal recommendations to the council. I was especially impressed by his work in crafting and successfully defending our county’s ban on jet skis.

I have admired Randy’s determination to base his decisions on the law despite being pressured at times to change his position. Even in the rare times I have disagreed with Randy’s decisions, I have found him approachable, willing to hear my concerns and very articulate in explaining the legal bases for his opinions.

Since Randy has been a public servant for 14 years, I think he will continue to hold in mind the best interests of the citizens of San Juan County as he presides over cases requiring interpretation of State and County laws and regulations without being influenced by prior experience representing a particular interest group.

As a physician on Orcas Island, I interacted with Randy professionally in his role as San Juan County coroner. I found him to be thoughtful, compassionate and always eager to understand the sometimes complex medical issues surrounding this aspect of his work. I have had the pleasure of knowing Randy personally and of observing his dedication to making our islands a better place to live through his volunteer work, especially with youth sports.

Through my professional and personal interactions with Randy, I am impressed that his thoughtful and well-researched grasp of the law, willingness to truly hear and consider arguments counter to his positions and his impartiality will make him an excellent judge. I urge you to elect Randy Gaylord as San Juan County Superior Court Judge.

Diane L. Boteler, MD

Bravo for Friends & Neighbors
As I began stumbling through my 80s, I scarcely expected to find a group of younger, more vigorous people to help “fill in the gaps” of my ability to remain self-sustaining.

The Friends and Neighbors of San Juan Senior Services have helped immeasurably to keep me in the mainstream of life.

With the cheerful assistance of Pam Fry, who coordinates this group, I have been introduced to people who have taken me to medical appointments, physical therapy, grocery shopping, bank, Post Office and Drug Store.

Thanks also to these people, I have continued to enjoy the theater, movies and pleasant drives to Roche Harbor along our lovely pastoral highways.

In addition, Senior Services provide me transport to the mainland for medical appointments and shopping, thanks to some of these same volunteers, who drive the bus and van.

Pam even found a young man willing to come over and remove a problem old, thorny rose bush by my front door, cheerfully replacing it with a new one.

Bravo for Friends & Neighbors! I couldn’t live without ’em.

Louise G. Smith
Friday Harbor