Pierce County Superior Court - Court Administrator

02/04/2016 11:03 AM | Anonymous



Pierce County Superior Court

Court Administrator

About the Pierce County Superior Court

The Pierce County Superior Court is an innovative, high preforming, high volume, urban court with 22 elected judges and eight court commissioners. Its mission is to actively manage the business of the court to provide for fair, prompt and efficient resolution of disputes; maintain independence and parity as an equal branch of government; and provide due process and individual justice.

The key elements of the Court’s current strategic plan fall into seven areas: enhancing the administration of justice; broadening access to justice and service to the public; promoting competence, professionalism and civility; judicial independence-insuring impartiality and accountability; improving court facilities; affectively utilizing technology; and building trust and confidence through community outreach. 

For more information visit the Pierce County Superior Court website: http://co.pierce.wa.us/superiorcourt.

About the Position

The Court Administrator guides a staff of 26 employees and oversees an annual operating budget of nearly $16 million. The Court Administrator is responsible for directing and coordinating all administrative and operational functions of the Court and allocating resources in a manner that maximizes efficiency in court operations and enhances service to the public. More specifically, this position oversees talent management, labor relations, facilities, probation services, the operation of the court rooms including docket preparation, case management, courtroom coverage, jury administration, interpreter services, court security, media relations, and ADA accommodation.

Under the direction of the Presiding Judge, the Court Administrator carries out the following functions:

Strategic Planning:

·         Provide visionary insight: Be able to translate the Superior Court’s strategic goals into both long and short-range plans that are comprehensive, realistic, effective and meet court requirements. Identify key opportunities resulting from data analysis. Develop and strengthen long-term strategies for the effective management and adjudication of cases.

·         Facilitate change: Oversee the change management process, including successful communication strategies, involving others in the implementation of change and monitoring and reinforcing process and success. Create an environment for court employees that encourages original and innovative solutions. Identify and initiate court innovations.

·         Think/look ahead: Be ahead of the curve on federal, state and local requirements and initiatives and how they impact the court. Find creative ways to be more efficient.

·         Fiscal management: Develop and present the court’s operating budget, monitoring of revenues and expenditures, ensuring that all programs are within budget and cost effective.

·         Think strategically: Visualize what might or could be, as well as the day-to-day strategic approach to court issues and challenges. Analyze metrics, statistics and trend data to improve court performance.

·         Fearless commitment to vision: Create and communicate a vision that is aligned with the strategy and direction of the bench. Clarify other’s involvement in the vision, inspiring a sense of energy and ownership, creating a culture of high performance, efficiency and recognizing the efforts of others.


·       Inspire trust: Communicate honestly, be consistent, follow through on commitments, create an atmosphere of integrity, marked by a fair respectful behavior.

·       Speak and write effectively: Explain direction and ideas with conviction in all settings; formal presentations, one-on-one and small and large meetings.

·       Listen to others: Citizens, employees, peers and partners.

·       Promote open communication: Maintain an environment where communication is open and direct, encouraged, rewarded and relevant.


·         Lead: Continuously build and reinforce the strength, reputation and leadership of the Court’s administrative staff. Engage, motivate and inspire employees around a shared vision and mission. Demonstrate principled leadership, personal courage and decisiveness.

·         Build talent pools: Hire, monitor, develop and manage staff. Continue to build and enhance a cohesive, dedicated, highly effective team.

·         Influence others: Garner support, negotiate persuasively and create positive outcomes.

·         Coach and develop: Forge partnerships, inspire commitment, grow skills, promote persistence and shape the Pierce County Superior Court workplace environment. Conduct performance evaluations and develop performance measures and standards.

·         Foster collaboration: Provide the tools, information technology systems and resources that create a supportive environment for working as a team.

·         Strive for results: Set high standards of performance, be bold, pursue aggressive goals and persist in the face of obstacles. Advance technology through major system and operations implementation and reforms.

Stakeholder Relations and Collaboration:

·         Drive effective external communications: Develop and nurture mission-critical relationships with judges, law enforcement, members of the bar, Prosecuting Attorney’s office, Department of Assigned Counsel, County Clerk’s Office, County Executive, County Council, other Courts and the media.

·         Build consensus: Collaborate with traditional and non-traditional partners.

·         Marshall support: Coordinate and cooperate with individuals and groups having divergent viewpoints and needs.

The Ideal Candidate

For this important role, the Pierce County Superior Court seeks a dynamic, highly credible, unifying leader who is deeply committed to the success of the Pierce County Superior Court. Proven leadership experience is essential and candidates should bring strengths in both external relations and internal management with an ability to balance the two. The successful candidate will report directly to the Presiding Judge.

Desirable Qualifications

A bachelor’s degree in public administration, criminal justice, law, business administration or related field with at least seven years experience in a senior leadership role within a large and complex publicly accountable organization that involves leading a diverse staff and management of significant funds. The preferred candidate will have substantial executive court administration experience and experience using administrative best practices in local government and judicial operations. A master’s degree is preferred.

Application Process

Persons interested in this position must submit a cover letter, salary history and a current resume.

If you have questions regarding this announcement, please call Marissa Karras at 360-956-1336. The position will remain open until filled; however the screening process will move quickly. The annual salary for this position is $105,500 - $142,480 and depends on experience and qualifications.  Please submit your application materials as soon as possible but no later than February 26th, 2016 to karrasconsulting.net.

The Pierce County Superior Court is an equal opportunity employer, values workplace diversity and seeks to create an environment and culture that embraces employee differences. All qualified applicants are considered in accordance with applicable laws prohibiting discrimination on the basis of race, religion, color, gender, age, national origin, sexual orientation, physical or mental disability, marital status or veteran status or any other legally protected status. We will provide assistance in the recruitment, application and selection process to applicants with disabilities who request such assistance.

About Pierce County

Pierce County has a population of about 805,000 and is governed by an Executive/Council form of government. The County boasts tremendous outdoor opportunities with miles of Puget Sound waterfront, Mt. Rainier National Park, 361 fresh-water lakes, alpine and cross-country skiing a short drive away and nationally ranked year-round golf courses in the vicinity, while also offering all the urban amenities. Major industries include health care, technology, agriculture, timber products and military installations. Pierce County is home to the city of Tacoma, several suburban cities, small towns and rural communities, as well as forests and farmlands. Pierce County’s moderate climate combined with a contrasting geography of water and mountains encourage a wealth of year round outdoor activities such as sailing, kayaking, fishing, skiing and hiking.

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