Thompson: Mona Williams is best qualified for the job

To the Editor:

Governor Brown appointed Wallowa County District Attorney Mona K. Williams to the position of circuit court judge in mid-2018 after conducting a thorough review and vetting of professional credentials and personal background checks of all candidates. Judge Mona K. Williams was the best qualified lawyer at the time of the appointment, and nothing has changed.

While serving as the Union County District Attorney between 2006 and 2014, I worked regularly with Mona Williams and her staff. I had many opportunities to observe her in personal and professional roles. She is thoroughly enjoyable on a personal level and this carries through into her professional life. Mona Williams possesses impeccable integrity, a comprehensive knowledge of criminal and civil law and an admirable work ethic.

Most important, Mona Williams has a well-developed sense of fairness, justice and accountability. These qualities must be utilized in the correct measure to ensure fair litigation and resolutions to parties before the circuit court. Litigants need fair hearings, victims should he heard and supported, public safety should be promoted, and offenders need to be held accountable for their actions.

I urge citizens in Union and Wallowa counties to support Judge Mona K. Williams.

Timothy R. Thompson

Former Union County District Attorney


Frett: Fighting human trafficking should be a priority

To the Editor:

Cherise Kaechele’s article regarding U.S. Rep. Greg Walden meeting with Union County officials to discuss human trafficking is an important subject to address, and I support April Oswald’s suggestion to provide resources as well as trained individuals to help victims of human trafficking. While her approach should definitely be implemented, government officials should also be thinking of other ways to fight against this epidemic.

The Borgen Project, which is a national, nonprofit organization that focuses on ending global poverty through U.S. foreign policy, promotes innovations in poverty reduction efforts and builds awareness of successes occurring, including the fight against human trafficking that is affecting over 20.9 million people around the world.

While Union County officials and Representative Walden begin to address this issue, I encourage the community to become involved in advocating for a change as well. This includes contacting and messaging political leaders to make the fight against human trafficking a priority.

Like Representative Walden, whom I deeply appreciate for addressing this issue, congressional members want to hear from the people and will listen to what everyone has to say. Using social media is also a great way to reach out and get others to become aware as well as involved in helping those victims of human trafficking. Posting and sharing about how important it is to end this epidemic can change the lives of many affected around the world.

Human trafficking is a human rights violation. I urge Sen. Ron Wyden, Sen. Jeff Merkley as well as Rep. Greg Walden to fight and continue to fight against both local and global human trafficking.

Charlene Frett

La Grande

Lepper: Wes Williams will see clearly and judge wisely

To the Editor:

I am writing to support Wes Williams for judge in the upcoming Nov. 6

Wes has helped me and many others. We worked together for seven years. In that time I realized how important the position of judge is. Any of us could find ourselves in front of the judge, and what we want for ourselves, our family members and our friends is a person knowledgeable about the law and our constitutional rights and who possesses wisdom for a fair consequence.

I remember my brother Tom saying, “Kath, if you have any legal questions, stop Wes Williams out of the office and he will answer your questions without a fee.” I found this to be true. Wes is always willing to take a few minutes to clear up a question, to share his knowledge. So now is your time to stop Wes, chat, ask questions. Check out his Facebook page.

Judge is such an important position. With the drop of the gavel, what is done is done. Let’s put the gavel in the hand of a man who has the background to see clearly and judge wisely. I encourage you to vote Wes Williams on Nov. 6.

Kathy Lepper

La Grande

Welch: Wes Williams believes in honesty, fairness and equal

To the Editor:

I support Wes Williams as a judicial candidate because he has real ethics and exhibits exceptional understanding, not only of the law but of the human condition itself. Wes is a man of high integrity and unwavering compassion, who makes himself available to the people he serves.

I first came to know Wes many years ago when my husband and I enlisted his services as an attorney. In that capacity, we found him to be knowledgeable, courageous and committed to understanding our needs and doing the very best he could for us. He was a strong ally, who always treated us with great care and courtesy.

In the years since that time, my family has continued to rely on Wes as an attorney, and from that relationship we quickly came to regard him as a trusted friend. Through the years, we have had many occasions to see how readily he comes to the aid of those in need and how deeply he cares for his fellow men and women.

I have no doubt Wes will be an exemplary judge. He believes in honesty, fairness and equality and in serving people — all people — to the best of his ability. I can think of no better qualifications for the position of judge, and I can think of no one I would more wholeheartedly endorse.

Judith Welch

La Grande

Clark: O’Toole is an excellent choice for city council

To the Editor:

I endorse Ashley O’Toole for La Grande City Council. I have had the pleasure of working with Mr. O’Toole for six years, and he is an excellent choice for city council. Through his real estate experience he has gained a great skill set for budgeting, management, dispute resolution and coordination of important tasks. He has volunteered a large amount of time to spearhead activities to improve the quality of life and build community in La Grande, such as the New Year’s Eve Ball Drop in downtown and the well-lauded Eastern Oregon Beer Festival, which generates a significant amount of income on a yearly basis. Think of what more he might be able to accomplish with additional political power and resources behind him.

Mr. O’Toole is a fiscal conservative and a combat veteran of the Iraq War. He is very responsible with his clients’ money and property, and that care will extend to solving the budgeting issues with the city. He is full of creative ideas and is a high-energy individual with a strong desire to serve all the constituents of La Grande, just like he served our great nation.

Vote Ashley O’Toole for La Grande City Council this fall.

Jeff D. Clark, Realtor

La Grande