McCulloch is city of Bainbridge Island's pick for new judge

Sara L. McCulloch has been chosen to be the new judge for Bainbridge Island Municipal Court Judge.

Bainbridge Island City Manager Doug Schulze has nominated McCulloch as the replacement for current Judge Kathryn Carruthers.

Carruthers’ term expires Dec. 31, and she told the city earlier this year she did not want another term.

McCulloch was one of four finalists for the position. She is a resident of Bainbridge Island and has worked in criminal law for the last 13 years. Currently, she is a senior deputy prosecuting attorney for the King County Prosecutor’s Office, where she is senior specialist for sex offender registration related cases and issues. She has worked in the prosecutor’s office since 1999.

The city council will be asked to confirm McCulloch's appointment to a four-year term at the council's next meeting on Nov. 13.

City officials said McCulloch has a long history of public service as a prosecutor, domestic violence advocate and volunteer, and she handled thousands of criminal cases during her time in the King County Prosecutor’s Office.

Twelve people applied for the judge's post, and McCulloch was a finalist along with Thomas Alpaugh, Steve Olsen and Cindy Smith.

The city said the selection process involved screening of the applicants by a group of judges and court administrators from Port Orchard, Edmonds, Kirkland and Issaquah. The candidates were also ranked by the Kitsap County Bar Association through a membership poll.

McCulloch earned her juris doctor degree from Boston College Law School in 2000. She received her undergraduate's degree, a bachelor of arts in political science, in 1995 from Western Washington University.

According to a proposed employment contract with the city, the judge's job will be a part-time position, at 50 percent of full-time.

The salary will be 50 percent of 95 percent of a Washington state district court judge’s salary.

In 2014, that means McCulloch will be paid a salary of $68,658.

Benefits include the city paying for 50 percent of the medical insurance premiums for the new judge and half of the medical insurance premiums for the judge’s spouse and dependents. The city will also pay half of the cost of premiums for dental insurance and vision plan coverage for the judge, her spouse and dependents.

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