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story.lead_photo.caption Robert Depper III talks about some of the physical, mental and legal concerns for people who are transitioning during a Transgender Day of Visibility, Sunday, March 31, 2019 at the Fayetteville Town Square in Fayetteville. - Photo by Charlie Kaijo

FAYETTEVILLE -- Robert L. Depper III is running for circuit judge in a juvenile division of the 4th Judicial District, which includes Washington and Madison counties.

Depper is a candidate for the Division 3 seat held by Stacey Zimmerman. The division hears juvenile cases including delinquency, dependent-neglect and family in need of services.

"I'm running for this position because I want to empower families. Right now, our juvenile court lets families down," Depper said. "I have been working in Arkansas juvenile and family courts my whole career. I've worked in courts in Benton, Washington, Madison, Carroll, Boone, Newton and Sebastian counties. I have represented DHS (Arkansas Department of Human Services). I've represented parents. I've represented children. I know the difference between effective courts and ineffective courts. Effective courts empower families to succeed and rehabilitate. Ineffective courts incarcerate and separate."

Depper, 41, grew up in Arkansas and is a fourth-generation lawyer. He attended the University of Arkansas for both his undergraduate and law degrees.

Depper is a member of the Arkansas and Missouri Bar associations and is certified to practice law in federal court in Arkansas. He's served as an attorney ad litem, a lawyer appointed by a court to act as an advocate for the best interests of a minor, handling domestic relations and probate issues.

Since 2014, Depper has owned Depper Legal Services. He was assistant director of the state Administrative Office of the Court's Parent Counsel Program where he focused on general legal services, drafting legal documents and family law. Depper was a lawyer for the Human Services department Office of Policy and Legal Services from 2009 to 2014. Depper worked at the Bassett Law Firm in 2008 and 2009 after serving there as a law clerk.

Depper has lived in Northwest Arkansas for more than 20 years. Between college and law school, Depper was in the Peace Corps and served in Uzbekistan and Armenia.

Elections in Arkansas for circuit judges are nonpartisan. The 2020 election will be March 3. Runoffs will be on the general election ballot in November. Circuit judges are paid $168,096 per year.

NW News on 07/12/2019

Print Headline: Depper running for circuit judge

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