Thomas Vallandingham has filed to run for the Daviess County Family Court Judge seat that is up for election this year. He has been in private practice for several years locally, largely focusing on family matters.
Vallandingham was born in Owensboro and has lived in Daviess County his whole life except during college. He hopes to restore some confidence in the Family Court Judge position if elected.
“I genuinely think there’s some good that can be done in the Daviess Family Court Judge position, and that the people of Daviess County need someone in that position that they can trust, that’s one of their own, that maybe they’ve seen and can relate to,” he said. “Given the kind of mess that position is currently in … I hope to be able to restore some confidence in that position and do things the right way.”
Vallandingham said he decided months ago that he wanted to file for Family Court Judge, saying he felt a calling to the position.
“My prayer has been that I want what’s best for the families of Daviess County,” he said. “I want things to be done the right way, because I’m a believer in the system. When everyone involved in the system does their job and does it to their utmost ability, the system generally works. Where we have issues is when things are not being done the right way by any member of the system. I think I’m well-suited — through my temperament, through my approach to the law, and my personality — to be in that seat.”
Vallandingham was a staff attorney for a Family Court Judge for three years in the 38th Judicial Circuit, which includes Ohio, Hancock, Edmonson, and Butler counties.
Since 2015 he’s been in private practice in Daviess County, focused primarily on family court, family law, civil custody, litigation, divorce, child protection, and adoption.
“I learned under a Family Court Judge that does things, I think, 99.9% of the time by the book. So I got good tutelage under him about how to run a judicial office and how to run a courtroom. I’ve been in private practice since leaving his employ,” Vallandingham said. “Whoever is in that seat this time next year needs to be above reproach, and if you talk to colleagues of mine I think they would say that they would have the utmost faith that I can do it the right way.”
Outside of his law-related career, Vallandingham is a local baseball umpire and soccer referee, also serving as the 3rd region soccer assignor. He’s also an adjunct professor at Brescia, and serves on the boards at New Beginnings and the H.L. Neblett Community Center.
His wife Adrienne is a local violin teacher that works at the Owensboro Symphony.
“There were a lot of places after law school that I could have relocated to, but I ultimately moved back home,” he said. “I love Owensboro. I’m connected to it. I try to stay as involved with different facets of the community as possible.”