David Mackey is the newest judge for Yavapai County Superior Court. He currently serves as the supervising trial attorney in the Yavapai County Attorney's Office.
Gov. Jane Hull chose Mackey for the position on Thursday. He got the word from the governor's office just before noon after a brief interview earlier in the day.
When Mackey received news of his appointment, he said he was, "somewhat speechless with the governor."
"David Mackey will be a tremendous addition to the Yavapai County Superior Court bench. His background in the Yavapai County Attorney's Office is the kind of experience that will be welcomed in the courtroom," Hull said in a news release.
Mackey has had a long and varied career in Arizona law. After receiving a bachelor's degree from Northern Arizona University and his law degree from the University of Arizona, Mackey started his career as a civil attorney in Tucson. Since then, he has gone on to serve in private practice and in 1988 joined the Yavapai County Attorney's Office.
Mackey specializes in criminal law. He has spent 13 years of his career as a prosecutor. He believes the experience he has gained as a prosecutor, such as a strong background in the rules of evidence, will help him on the bench.
"I've always tried to be fair as a prosecutor and will continue as a judge," Mackey said.
Mackey considers himself up to the challenge of the new position, but expects changes.
"I think it's a big transition," Mackey said. "There will be a learning curve to get up to speed."
Mackey does not think he will hear criminal cases right away because with his former position there may be some conflicts of interest. He does hope to someday be back into the criminal arena as a judge.
Mackey ran for the county attorney position in November 2000, but lost to Sheila Polk. He believes that position and his new post are both important.
"Both divisions are equally important to the county," Mackey said. "I enjoyed the year I worked under Sheila."
Mackey has been active in the community for years. Since 1995, he has been a volunteer judge for the Prescott Teen Court Program and has participated in the Prescott High School juvenile crime education program.
He hopes that in the years ahead people will look back on his career as a judge and think of him well.
"(I hope they will see) that I was fair and that people understood why I ruled the way I ruled," Mackey said.