Kentucky Court of Justice
Kentucky Court of Appeals to hear oral arguments May 29 on Paducah smoking ban
FRANKFORT, Ky. -- The Kentucky Court of Appeals will hear oral arguments in a Paducah smoking-ban case Thursday, May 29, at the McCracken County Courthouse in Paducah. The proceedings will be open to the public.
A three-judge panel consisting of Court of Appeals Judges Denise G. Clayton, Christopher Shea Nickell and Jeff S. Taylor will hear arguments in the case at 1:30 p.m. CDT in Courtroom A on the second floor of the courthouse, which is located at 301 S. Sixth St.
A summary of the case the panel will hear is below.
Thursday, May 29, 2008
1:30 PM 2007CA001732
DICKIE TODD v CITY OF PADUCAH
Summary: Civil. Whether Circuit Court properly concluded that the City of Paducah’s smoking-ban ordinance did not constitute a zoning ordinance under KRS 100.203.
McCracken County judge who ruled in the case – Judge Robert J. Hines
Appellant’s attorneys: Kevin A. Long and Jeremy Ian Smith
Appellee’s attorneys: David L. Kelly and Melissa Kerley Yates
Judge Denise G. Clayton
Denise G. Clayton became the first black woman appointed to the Kentucky Court of Appeals in October 2007. She represents Division 2 of the 4th Appellate District, which is comprised of Jefferson County.
Prior to her appointment to the Court of Appeals, Judge Clayton was chief circuit judge for Jefferson County, where she had been a circuit judge for nearly seven years. She was the first black woman to be a Kentucky Circuit Court judge. She was also chief regional circuit judge for the Metro Region for several months before she was appointed to the Court of Appeals. Judge Clayton previously served in Jefferson County as a judge for District Court, Family Court and Drug Court.
Judge Clayton began her legal career as an attorney with the Internal Revenue Service. She spent nine years in private practice and was the Legal Aid Society of Louisville’s associate director before becoming a Jefferson County District Court judge in 1996.
She earned her juris doctor degree from the University of Louisville’s Brandeis School of Law after graduating cum laude with a bachelor’s degree from Defiance College in Defiance, Ohio.
She is the chairwoman for the Commission on Racial Fairness for Jefferson County’s courts and is a member of the Louisville Bar Association, Louisville Black Lawyers Association, Women Lawyers Association and Focus Louisville. She is also on the boards of directors for the Coalition for the Homeless, Plymouth Community Renewal Center, Summerbridge, and Norton Hospital Foundation.
Among her awards, Judge Clayton has received the Public Advocate Award from the state’s Department of Public Advocacy, the Distinguished Alumna Award from Brandeis School of Law, the Alumni Achievement Award from Defiance College, the Community Service Award from the Optimist Club of Louisville, and the Champion for Children Award from Shawnee High School in Louisville.
Judge Clayton is married to Ronald Clayton and has two children.
Judge Christopher Shea Nickell
Christopher Shea Nickell was elected to serve on the Kentucky Court of Appeals in November 2006 and represents Division 1 of the 1st Appellate District. The 1st Appellate District is comprised of Allen, Ballard, Butler, Caldwell, Calloway, Carlisle, Christian, Crittenden, Edmonson, Fulton, Graves, Hickman, Hopkins, Livingston, Logan, Lyon, Marshall, McCracken, McLean, Muhlenberg, Simpson, Todd, Trigg and Webster counties.
Prior to his election, Judge Nickell practiced law for 22 years, serving as a trial attorney, prosecutor, public defender and college instructor. From 2002 until his election to the Court of Appeals, he served as assistant McCracken County attorney.
Judge Nickell served as assistant public advocate in Graves County from 1999 to 2000 through the Department of Public Advocacy’s Paducah trial office. In 1997, he established Nickell Law Firm in Paducah. He was previously associated with the law office of Truman L. Dehner in Morehead, and two Paducah law firms, Boehl, Stopher & Graves LLP and the Saladino Law Firm. From 1985 to 1986, Judge Nickell served as assistant commonwealth’s attorney for the 21st Judicial District, which is comprised of Bath, Menifee, Montgomery and Rowan counties. In addition, he has taught courses on insurance and risk management at Murray State University and on jurisprudence at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
In 1995, the Kentucky Bar Association named Judge Nickell an Outstanding Kentucky Young Lawyer.
A native and resident of McCracken County, Judge Nickell graduated from Paducah Tilghman High School in 1977. He earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from DePauw University in 1981, majoring in both political science and communications. At DePauw, he served as student body president and was the recipient of the Walker Cup, presented annually by the faculty to the graduating senior who has contributed most to the campus community. He subsequently served on the DePauw Board of Trustees. Judge Nickell earned his juris doctor degree from the University of Kentucky College of Law in 1984, where he served as president of the student bar association.
Judge Nickell served as district governor for District 43K of the International Association of Lions Clubs and as president of the Paducah Lions Club. He is a recipient of the organization’s Finis Davis and Melvin Jones awards and is a trustee on the Kentucky Lions Eye Foundation. He is an Eagle Scout and a board member for the Shawnee Trails Boy Scout Council. He has been involved in numerous other civic organizations, including the Chamber of Commerce, Elks Club, Masons, Habitat for Humanity, Ducks Unlimited, and National Wild Turkey Federation.
Judge Nickell is a deacon and adult Sunday school teacher at the Heartland Worship Center (Southern Baptist) in Paducah. He previously served as music director at Concord United Methodist Church in Paducah and is a member of Gideons International.
Judge Nickell was married to the late Lana Jean “Jeanne” (King) Nickell, a school teacher, administrator and counselor, who died in 2001. He is the son of Carl Duane “Red” Nickell and Anna June (Starrett) Nickell, who are retired educators.
Judge Jeff S. Taylor
Jeff S. Taylor was elected to the Kentucky Court of Appeals in November 2003 to represent Division 1 of the 2nd Appellate District. The 2nd Appellate District is comprised of Barren, Breckinridge, Bullitt, Daviess, Grayson, Hancock, Hardin, Hart, Henderson, LaRue, Meade, Ohio, Union and Warren counties.
Prior to sitting on the Court of Appeals, Judge Taylor practiced law in Owensboro for more than 20 years and was a sole practitioner from 1990 until his election.
Judge Taylor has a Bachelor of Science degree from Murray State University and a Master of Public Administration degree from Memphis State University. He graduated from the University of Louisville Brandeis School of Law with honors in 1982.
He is a past president of the Kentucky chapter of the Federal Bar Association, Daviess County Bar Association, Daviess County Public Defender Corp. and the Daviess County Lawyer Referral Service. He is a member of the Kentucky, American and Daviess County bar associations. He is a Life Fellow in the Kentucky Bar Foundation and a member of the Brandeis Honor Society. He received a Donated Legal Services Recognition Award from the Kentucky Bar Association in 1999 and 2000.
Judge Taylor is a member of the Owensboro-Daviess County Chamber of Commerce, is past president of the Owensboro Kiwanis Club and serves on the board of trustees for Girls Inc. He is a former board member of the Owensboro-Daviess County Committee on Aging. He has been a frequent United Way volunteer and has also been a volunteer for the Salvation Army and Boy Scouts Law Explorers.
Judge Taylor was born in Fort Knox and raised in Daviess County. He is married to the former Betty Keller. She has one son, and they have two grandchildren.
Kentucky Court of Appeals
Nearly all cases heard by the Kentucky Court of Appeals come to it on appeal from a lower court. If a case is tried in Circuit Court or District Court and the losing parties involved are not satisfied with the outcome, they may ask for a higher court to review the correctness of the trial court’s decision. Some cases, such as criminal-case acquittals and divorces, may not be appealed. In a divorce case, however, child custody and property rights decisions may be appealed. Cases are not retried in the Court of Appeals. Only the record of the original court trial is reviewed, with attorneys presenting the legal issues to the court for a decision.
Fourteen judges, two elected from seven appellate court districts, serve on the Court of Appeals. The judges are divided into panels of three to review and decide cases, with the majority determining the decision. The panels do not sit permanently in one location, but travel about the state to hear cases.
The Administrative Office of the Courts in Frankfort supports the activities of 4,000 Kentucky Court of Justice employees, including the elected offices of justices, judges and circuit court clerks. As the fiscal agent for the state court system, the AOC prepares a biennial budget draft and executes the Judicial Branch budget.