Judge Blackman announces re-election bid

Tuesday, December 1, 2015
Keith Blackman

Jonesboro -- Craighead County District Judge Keith Blackman has officially launched his bid for re-election to the post he has held since first being elected in 2005.

"Now, more than ever, I believe that experience is vital in the courtroom. In the past 10 years, I have been able to accumulate a wealth of experience and intellect that serves the people of Craighead County well when rendering my decisions," Blackman said in his statement.

Prior to being elected to the bench, Blackman had a distinguished career in the military and private/public law practice. A 27 year veteran of the United States Army, Blackman retired with the rank of Lt. Colonel. He had a successful law practice for 30 years in Craighead County, serving as city attorney for Brookland, Cash, and as the school district attorney for both Brookland and Westside, cumulatively, during 25 of those years.

"I've learned so much throughout my life's experiences," Blackman said. "In the military I learned about respect, honor, service and authority. In private practice, I learned about the real struggles that people in our community face, and how the law should be used to protect our citizenry at large. And as a city attorney and sitting judge, I learned that public service is a privilege, not an entitlement. It's not something that is passed down generation to generation as a birthright; it's something to be earned. I pray every day that I continue to earn the right to serve."

Judge Blackman cited several positive changes and programs that have been instituted under his leadership as District Court Judge. Some of those include; the establishment of both "Jail Court" and "Video Court" to increase security and reduce cost and manpower required in dealing with incarcerated defendants; extending court days from three per week to five per week, resulting in reduced overtime costs to taxpayers while providing a speedier trial for those awaiting a court date; an increase in the collection of fees and fines, helping reduce the burden of court costs on taxpayers; and the establishment of a DWI Court, so those with multiple DWIs, while still under strict supervision, can work and support themselves and families, and pursue treatment and rehabilitation, rather than long jail terms.

Blackman has a long list of public and community involvement, including membership in the American

Legion, the Military Officers Association of America, Masonic Lodge, Exchange Club, Jonesboro Baseball

Boosters and the Board of Directors of Consolidated Youth Services. Judge Blackman is a member of

Central Baptist Church.

Blackman summarizes his approach to the judiciary as an accumulation of his life's experience. "In a nutshell, I strive to temper each decision with Christian compassion, but with an unwavering commitment to the law. I don't see those things as being exclusive," Blackman said.

Elections for Craighead County District Judge are non-partisan and will be March 1. To learn more, you can go to www.keithblackman.com.

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