Updated: May 6
Governor Kate Brown announced that she will appoint Amanda Benjamin to the Lincoln County Circuit Court, to fill a vacancy created by the retirement of Judge Thomas Branford. Her appointment is effective immediately. “Amanda Benjamin’s dedicated service to Lincoln County as a full-time hearings referee and judge pro-tem for the past two years makes her uniquely well positioned to hit the ground running,” said Governor Brown. “I am pleased that Lincoln County will have another great judge joining the circuit court.”
Benjamin earned her bachelor’s degree from the University of North Carolina, and earned her law degree with honors from the University of Tennessee College of Law. After graduating from law school, she began her legal career in Oregon, working in private practice in Medford, before moving to a law firm in Newport. During that time, she worked as a child protective services worker with the Lincoln County Department of Human Services.
She then served as a Deputy District Attorney in Lincoln County, with a brief period of time serving in the Malheur County District Attorney’s Office, adding to her statewide perspective. While with the District Attorney's Office, Benjamin worked extensively with community partners, and was recognized in 2016 with a Prosecutor of the Year award at the Lincoln County Law Enforcement Banquet.
In January 2019, Benjamin transitioned to her current role as the full-time hearings referee and judge pro tem for the Lincoln County Circuit Court, where, in addition to managing a regular caseload, Benjamin established and leads the County’s mental health treatment court. Benjamin is active in the community, serving on the Oregon Judicial Department’s Behavioral Health Advisory Committee and the Judicial Engagement and Leadership Institute, as a mentor through the Oregon State Bar, and as the leader of the Lincoln County Juvenile Model Court Team. In prior years, Benjamin served on the board of My Sister’s Place and on the Children’s Advocacy Center event planning committee.