Governor names Easter to Court of Criminal Appeals

Williamson County judge replaces retiring Smith

Gov. Bill Haslam has named Timothy Lee Easter to the Court of Criminal Appeals.

Easter has been a circuit court judge for the 21st Judicial District, which consists of Williamson, Hickman, Lewis and Perry counties. He was appointed to that position in 1998 by Gov. Don Sundquist, was elected later that year for an eight-year term and was re-elected for another eight-year term in 2006.

"We are fortunate to have a person with this level of experience on the bench, and I am pleased to make this appointment to the Court of Criminal Appeals," Haslam said. "Having Judge Easter in this position will serve the Middle Section well."

Easter replaces Jerry L. Smith, who is retiring.

Easter was one of seven applicants to replace Judge Jeff Bivins on the court. Bivins — a former 21st District circuit judge himself — replaced Supreme Court Justice Bill Koch, who is now the dean at Nashville School of Law.

Easter received his law degree from the Nashville School of Law in 1989. He earned a bachelor’s degree from Lipscomb University in 1982 and is a graduate of David Lipscomb High School.  Easter has also been an adjunct professor at Lipscomb University.

Easter has been a judge in the 21st Drug Court Inc., an alternative sentencing program that gives non-violent offenders with addiction issues an opportunity to complete a recovery program in lieu of, or in addition to, traditional sentences.