Tom Chambers (judge)

Last updated
Tom Chambers
Born(1943-10-11)October 11, 1943
DiedDecember 11, 2013(2013-12-11) (aged 70)
Nationality American
Education Yakima Valley Community College
Washington State University (BA)
University of Washington School of Law (JD)
Occupation(s)Lawyer, Washington Supreme Court justice

Thomas Jefferson Chambers [1] (October 11, 1943 – December 11, 2013) was an American lawyer who served as an associate justice of the Washington Supreme Court from 2000 to 2012. [2] [3]


Early life and education

Chambers grew up in Yakima, where he worked at his father's automobile repair garage. He graduated from Wapato High School in 1962, and then attended Yakima Valley Community College. [4] In 1966, he graduated with a B.A. degree from Washington State University, and in 1969 received a J.D. degree from the University of Washington School of Law. [5] Father of Jolie, Jana and Tom Chambers. Grandfather of Zariya, Taliya, Siyana, Alanna, Spencer, and Rylee.

While in private practice, Chambers practiced personal injury law. On the bench, he continued his commitment to individual rights. Two of his notable Supreme Court cases were Braam v. State of Washington (2003), [6] concerning foster children's constitutional rights, and State v. A.N.J. (2010), [7] setting standards for public defender case loads. [8] [9] [10]

Chambers served as president of both the Washington State Bar Association, 1996–1997, and the Washington State Trial Lawyers Association, 1985–1986. [11]

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  1. Who's Who in American Law, 2003-2004. Marquis Who's Who. 2003. p. 125.
  2. Kamb, Lewis (December 18, 2013). "Tom Chambers, former state Supreme Court justice, dies". Seattle Times. Retrieved 2 July 2015.
  3. "Former Justice Tom Chambers: "I have three to six months left"". Spokesman-Review. March 19, 2013. Retrieved 2 July 2015.
  4. Thomas, Chris (January 9, 2014). "WA Celebrates Legacy of Justice Tom Chambers". Public News Service. Retrieved June 7, 2017.
  5. Johnson, Gene (December 12, 2013). "Retired state Supreme Court Justice Chambers dies at 70". KOMO News. Associated Press. Retrieved June 7, 2017.
  6. Braam v. Washington, 150 Wash.2d 689, 81 P.3d 8451 (2003).
  7. State v. A.N.J., 168 Wash.2d 91, 225 P.3d 956 (2010).
  8. Jenkins, Austin (December 12, 2013). "Foster Care and Public Defense among Justice Chambers' Legacies". KNKX Radio. Retrieved June 7, 2017.
  9. Houppert, Karen (2013). Chasing Gideon: The Elusive Quest for Poor People's Justice. New York, NY: New Press. pp. 47–49. ISBN   978-1595588692 . Retrieved June 7, 2017.
  10. Moore, Joanne. "Washington Supreme Court Opinion in State v. A.N.J., Docket Number: 81236-5" (PDF). Washington State Office of Public Defense. Retrieved June 7, 2017.
  11. "Past Presidents". Washington State Association for Justice. Retrieved June 7, 2017.