NASHVILLE – Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam today appointed Forest A. Durard Jr. as circuit court judge for the 17th Judicial District, replacing Judge Robert Crigler, who retired effective May 30.
“Forest brings valuable experience to the bench from a career that includes both the public and private sectors,” Haslam said. “I know he will serve the citizens of the 17th district well in this role.”
Durard, 51, has been in private practice since 2004. Prior to that, he was a partner in the firm Bramlett & Durard, beginning in 1992. Durard served in the district attorney’s office of the 17th Judicial District from 1989-1990 and in the public defender’s office of the district from 1990-1992.
“I am both flattered and honored to have been chosen by Gov. Haslam for this position,” Durard said. “I would like to thank the governor and his staff for placing their trust in me to fill the judicial vacancy and, also, to those who encouraged and supported me to seek the position. I look forward to serving the people of Bedford, Marshall, Moore and Lincoln counties now and into the future.”
Durard’s work as a sole practitioner has included criminal law, domestic matters, probate, personal injury/workers’ compensation, bankruptcy, Social Security disability and real estate. Prior to his career in law, Durard was an insurance claims adjuster.
Durard graduated from the Nashville School of Law in 1989. He graduated from Middle Tennessee State University in 1985 with a bachelor of science degree, majoring in political science with an emphasis on pre-law, and minoring in criminal justice and history. He is a lifelong Tennessean and has lived in Bedford County 21 years.
Durard has been active in his community as an assistant coach for middle school softball and as a volunteer at Shelbyville Bedford County Animal Control and board member of the Middle Tennessee Spay & Neuter Clinic. He and his wife, Melissa, have two daughters, Taylor and Kendall.