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Monday, December 31, 2012

Message from Justice of the Peace (Pct. 2) Steve Walker

Judge Steve Walker with Dallas Cowboy Hall of Famer Drew Pearson
with Super Bowl Ring on SA Living  (WOAI-4)
L-R: Judge Peter Sakai, Judge Bill Donovan & Judge Steve Walker on KTSA Radio, with Tommy Calvert, with blogger Joe Solis, speaking @ Career Day in an elementary school
A heart felt thanks to the consituents of Precinct 2 who elected me four years ago to serve as your Justice of the Peace, Precinct 2. Although I was not re-elected, it is time to move on and accomplish bigger tasks.

I hope I served you well. The truancy program I instituted appears to be working well since I implemented mandated Pubic Library Cards, 2 page Book Reports and required 8-hours of tutoring. Since the student chooses the subject for tutoring, the program is fairing much better than anticipated. The A students are required to tutor the students who don't do as well.

I hope my successor will continue the program and not revert to high fines and many hours of community service that do not work.

For the past two years on the editorial page, La Prensa has published my column, "Ask the Judge" that addressed all aspects of the Justice of the Peace Court from truancy to traffic to small claims and traffic tickets. That is finished.

Beginning next week in the Sunday edition of La Prensa my new column called, "Just a Thought" will take the place of "Ask the Judge." I will address all kinds of issues.

Walker Report will continue on and hopefully soon it will be upgraded to include ads, student journalist articles and much more. Photos will still be the main focus, especially the political photos. Any one who wants to be on Walker Report will have their day. You will still have the opportunity to send your "info" to be posted as in the past.

Again thank you for your support of me as your Judge and for supporting the Walker Report.  Tomorrow I plan to attend as many of the newly elected Judges swearing in ceremeonies and take photos and post them on Walker Report.

Til then...
Judge Steve Walker
Walker Report
& soon to be former Judge

Remembrance of the passing of Attorney Jimmy Parks this year

L-R: @ the 550 KTSA Studios for the Jack Riccardi Show "Gang of Four, " Talk Show Host Jack Riccardi, Jimmy Parks, former SAEN Columnist Carlos Guerra (also passed) & Judge Steve Walker.

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Final "Ask the Judge" column in La Prensa SA, 12-30

Ask the Judge: Review of past columns
By Judge Steve Walker

For the past two years (24 months=96 columns) it has been my privilege to see my Sunday weekly column “Ask the Judge” published on the editorial page of La Prensa.

I thank Publisher Tino Duran and Editor Nina Duran for allowing me that opportunity. It has been a wonderful experience to continue to hone my journalistic skills I learned while in the military as a public affairs specialist. Apparently all that broadcast, photo print journalism training actually paid off. It did not go to waste. La Prensa on occasion also published a number of my photos of local events. For that I am also grateful and hopefully they will continue to do so.

As a retired English/Journalism teacher and now Judge, I have attempted to inform the readers on every aspect of the courtroom that I preside over. Since taking the bench, I have encountered numerous plaintiffs and defendants who have never been in a court of any kind and for many it is a very scary and intimidating experience.

By educating the reader in the workings of the court and what to expect when they find themselves in a courtroom, it can make the experience less intimidating and stressful.

In two years “Ask the Judge” covered on more than one occasion dockets addressing all aspects of truancy, disorderly students, evictions, small claims and traffic violations.

The columns have addressed the duties of bailiffs, clerks, how to file paper work for small claims and evictions, what to do when you sue the wrong defendant, the appeal process, the advantages of hiring an attorney, courtroom demeanor, information on how to get moving violations off your record (defensive driving and deferred adjudication) so your insurance will not be affected or have your driver’s license revoked…and so on.

For those of you who have followed “Ask the Judge” these past two years, you may recall my three part series on how to appear on the Judge Judy show in San Francisco rather than face off in my court.

In reality Judge Judy comes to basically the same conclusions I do in my court, except as a reality show host she is able to exhibit a much harsher demeanor.

I am not allowed by judicial behavior to speak to defendants in the same tone or manor she is allowed to do. While it makes for good TV, for me it could mean sanctions, reprimand or removal from the bench.

I also related a success story on a five year old pre-K student who had missed numerous days of school because her single father relied on relatives and others to take her to school because of his work schedule. Unfortunately they didn’t follow through and he was still held responsible.

When she came back to court with her father two weeks later she personally and proudly informed me that she graduated Pre-K, walked the stage and received her diploma!

Everyone in the court clapped and cheered her for her success. When she told her story in court she constantly referred to me as “Judge.” She serves as a role model for older students finding themselves in court for skipping school.

Now that I will be leaving the bench within days and moving on to other journalistic endeavors, this will be my last official column as a Judge. “Ask the Judge” will be no more.

While the column will be no more, I hope to write about other issues in the future related or unrelated to the courtroom. Having said that I will close the column with the weekly tagline “Lastly as always, if you are due in court, be sure to show up to court on time. It is in everyone’s best interest.

Justice of the Peace, Pct. 2 Steve Walker is a Vietnam Veteran and a former Journalist. Walker's new column will begin next week under the title, "Just a Thought."

Happy and Prosperous News Year from Congressman Cuellar

As this holiday season continues, I encourage you to spend time with your family, loved ones and cherish each other’s company. And as 2012 comes to a close, take a moment to pause and reflect on the year that’s about to end.

Focus on a fresh start and let's welcome 2013 with new goals and aspirations.

I wish you a very blessed and prosperous new year. May 2013 be filled with joy, happiness, and peace for you and your family.

It has been an honor to represent you in Congress and I look forward to continue working hard for the things that matter most to the 28th Congressional District of Texas.


Congressman Henry Cuellar

Friday, December 28, 2012

Swearing in Ceremony for the Newly Elected Judges, 1-1

Judge-Elect David Canales of the 73rd District Court
Swearing-in Ceremony Schedule
for Newly Elected Judges,
Jan. 1st

The San Antonio Bar Association will coordinate the swearing-in ceremonies for recently elected judges on Tuesday, January 1st in the Central Jury Room of the Cadena-Reeves Justice Center and the Presiding Courtroom of the Bexar County Courthouse. The agenda is as follows:

Central Jury Room:

10 a.m. Gloria Saldaña, 438th Civil District Court
11:30 a.m. Michael Mery, 37th Civil District Court
1 p.m. Laura Salinas, 166th Civil District Court
2:30 p.m. Ray J. Olivarrí, 399th Criminal District Court
4 p.m. Rebeca C. Martínez, Fourth Court of Appeals, Pl. 7
5 p.m. Luz Elena Chapa, Fourth Court of Appeals, Pl. 4

Presiding Court:
10:30 a.m. David A. Canales, 73rd Civil District Court

All investiture ceremonies are open to the public. Additionally, Susan Pamerleau (Bexar County Sheriff) will be sworn in at 11:30 p.m. on December 31, 2012 in the Presiding Courtroom (1st floor) of the Bexar County Courthouse. Patricia Alvarez (Fourth Court of Appeals, Pl. 3) will be sworn in in Laredo.

NOTE: Please enter through the South entrance of the Paul Elizondo Tower (101 W. Nueva). The parking garage will be open and there will be no charge for those attending the swearing ceremonies. The garage will not be available for general public parking that day, only for the ceremonies.

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Ralph Bender passes away at the age of 88 years old

I'm so grateful to have known this passionate, dedicated man, Ralph C. Bender. He passed away this morning at the age of 88. It's fitting that the last time I saw him was at a holiday party at his home on Sunday morning. A founder of San... Antonio Sports and influential architect and urban planner, Ralph was always the life of every party.
 Ralph showed me that it is never enough to talk about change, you have to get into the middle of it and make things happen. He was the personification of Nike's "Just Do It." RIP, Ralph. You are forever loved.
Chris Duel

Walker Report archive photos of Texas Governor Rick Perry

Walker Report archives of former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi

Former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi & former Bexar County Democratic Party Chair Choco Meza. Speaker Nancy Pelosi visited San Antonio on two Separate occaisions.

Walker Report archives of Sen. Majority Leader Harry Reid

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid with Judge Steve Walker
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid with Nancy Froment, Lila Aguirre, signing autograph, Taj. Matthews

Walker Report archives on former Speaker Newt Gingrich

Former US Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich with Texas Education Commissioner Michael Williams & Judge Steve Walker, with State Senator & newly appointed Justice of the Peace Pct. 3 Jeff Wentworth & Texas Speaker of the House Joe Straus