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McMenis candidate for Court of Appeals

By submitted, 02/19/20 11:03 AM

Smackover resident and El Dorado attorney James McMenis, recently announced his candidacy for election for associate judge, Position Five on the Arkansas Court of Appeals.

   McMenis points to his small town south central Arkansas common sense family values; his training, education and experience as an attorney and in problem solving; his public service and his military/government experience as good reasons to consider supporting him for the Court of Appeals. McMenis, a Gideon and 20-year military veteran, earned a Masters of Law from the University of Virginia School of Law as well as a graduate of the University of Arkansas School of Law and Ouachita Baptist University as well as the U.S. Army Command and General Staff Officer Course. After military retirement, McMenis began a 26 year career as a civilian attorney with a broad general full service practice of law.

   In a news release, McMenis, a life-long Arkansan, stated that “I want to serve the people of Arkansas by providing strong and decisive leadership/representation on the Arkansas Court of Appeals with integrity, tradition, and excellence and a desire to not only follow the law and the legal precedents but to also use my ethical values, conscience and legal training and experience in deciding cases presented to the Arkansas Court of appeals.”

   “While a Court of Appeals judge has statewide appellate jurisdiction, he or she is elected from local districts. I believe I am the right attorney with the energy, training and experience to serve as the District 5 associate judge. I am a 7th generation Arkansan, with strong, deep, south central Arkansas roots and have learned from our people.”

   McMenis learned about serving others from his parents. His family believed in service and exemplified a tradition of service to the community. They were all educators and church leaders in Union County. His father, Freeman McMenis, was a pastor and educator; his mother, Eleanor, was an educator in Union (and Ouachita) counties, as were his brother, Robert, and sister-in-law, Kathy. McMenis, a military veteran, served his country in the U.S. Army for over 20 years. “I also learned about service and leadership while preparing for and pursuing a successful career in the U.S. Army in various leadership positions.”

   He is a member of the Arkansas Bar Association where he served on the House of Delegates (tenured member) and various committees; serves as president of the local Gideon Camp; serves as the Judge Advocate for Roy Kinard American Legion Post 10; serves on the board of directors of the Families and Children Together (FACT) – Head Start, and the Center for Legal Services and is a member of the Lions International, as well as the El Dorado and Smackover Chambers of. Commerce. He formerly served on the board of directors for the Arkansas Volunteer Lawyers for the Elderly (vice-chairman) and the Mid Missouri Credit Union. He is a member of Maple Avenue Baptist Church where he serves in the AWANA program. He has three children and eight grandchildren.

   McMenis proudly served his country in the U.S. Army for over 20 years – his military decorations include Alabama Commendation Medal; Army Commendation Medal with Oak Leaf Cluster, and the Meritorious Service Medal. His last ten years was spent in the Department of Defense level Forces Command (FORSCOM), responsible for Land Defense of the Continental U.S., as well as military support to Civil Defense (homeland security). He authored the legal annexes to that command’ concept of operations plan and served as the legal advisor to the Crises Action (Response) Team, which supported the military response both for hurricane relief and to the Los Angeles riots. He also served as the Executive for Reserve Affairs and formerly served as General Counsel, Fort Drum as well as other positions to include Chief, Legal Assistance; Chief, Personnel Actions Division and Chief, Training and Liaison Division, and Assistant Chief, Criminal Law Division.

   McMenis promises competent, zealous, and tireless representation of the many faceted interests of District 5 on the court. “I believe I have the depth of experience, training and education to be effective as an Appellat Judge. A judge you trust.” Position Five is a district made up of 13 counties including Ashley, Bradley, Calhoun, Cleveland, Columbia, Dallas, Drew, Grant, Lafayette, Lincoln, Nevada, Ouachita and Union counties.