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Justice Bobbe J. Bridge, ret.

Justice Bobbe J. Bridge, ret.

Bobbe J. Bridge is the founding president and CEO of the Center for Children & Youth Justice, a nonprofit organization she created in 2006 to reform Washington State’s child welfare and juvenile justice systems. She served on the State Supreme Court from 1999 to 2007 and on the King County Superior Court from 1989 to 1999, where she was Chief Juvenile Court Judge for three years. She continues to chair the Washington State Supreme Court Commission on Children in Foster Care. Before joining the bench, Justice Bridge was the first female partner at the Seattle law firm of Garvey Schubert Barer.

Recognized statewide and nationally as a leading advocate for foster care reform, domestic violence victims, truancy prevention, juvenile justice reform and a host of other issues, Justice Bridge also serves the community as a dedicated volunteer and philanthropist. She has been a member of the Boards of many nonprofit organizations, including YouthCare and the YWCA. In 1999, she helped establish and fund the Pacific Northwest’s first court-based child care center at the Regional Justice Center in Kent, offering a safe place for parents and guardians with business before the court to leave young children.

She has been honored with numerous awards for her service, including: the 2016 Women Leaders Career Excellence in Public Service Award from the University of Washington School of Law; 2015 Debra Friedman Timeless Award from City of Tacoma, 2014 Lifetime of Idealism Award from City Year; the 2014 Baxter Award from the Foster Parent Association of Washington; the 2010 Advocacy Spirit Award from the National Network for Youth; the 2009 Strategies for Youth Award from Washington’s Lieutenant Governor; the Passing the Torch Award from Washington Women Lawyers; the Seattle Civil Rights Champion Award from Lambda Legal; the Distinguished Alumna Award from the University of Washington School of Law; and the Judge of the Year Award from the King County Bar Association.

Justice Bridge also has been inducted into the Washington Generals for special service to the citizens of the State and into the Warren E. Burger Society of the National Center for State Courts.

“Our kids deserve a fighting chance to become strong, self-sufficient and thriving members of the community,” Justice Bridge says. “More unified, better informed child welfare and juvenile justice systems will give them that chance.”

Education and Legal Experience

Justice Bridge received her Bachelor’s Degree, magna cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa, from the University of Washington and earned her MA and Ph.C in Political Science at the University of Michigan. She received her Juris Doctorate from the University of Washington School of Law in 1976, where she was a member of the Law Review and served as its Notes and Comments Editor. After graduating from law school, she joined the law firm of Garvey Schubert and Barer, where she remained until 1990 specializing in the fields of administrative law, litigation, government relations, and domestic relations.