Judge David Chamberlain was appointed associate circuit judge on May 1, 2008. He received his Bachelor of Science degree in economics at Southwest Missouri State University (now Missouri State University). He received his Juris Doctorate degree from the University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Law. He was in private practice before being appointed to the bench in 2008.
Judge Chamberlain is a member of The Missouri Bar, the Clay County Bar Association, and the Kansas City Metropolitan Bar Association. He is also active in the Liberty Sertoma Club.
Judge Chamberlain was retained as a judge in the election for the year 2010.
Attorneys responded to survey questions asking if they agreed with 19 statements about Judge Chamberlain and rated Judge Chamberlain on a scale of 1 to 5, with 1 representing “strongly disagree” and 5 representing “strongly agree.” Among the lawyers who evaluated Judge Chamberlain, 32 percent of them had between one and five cases before Judge Chamberlain; 30 percent had six to 10 cases; and 38 percent had 10 or more cases. Those lawyers who had cases that went to trial and had a decision entered during the judge’s current term of office were made up of 65 percent with one to five cases; 23 percent with six to 10 cases; and 13 percent with more than 10 cases. Of the lawyers who evaluated Judge Chamberlain, 15 percent said the judge ruled primarily in the lawyer’s favor; 66 percent said he ruled equally in favor of and against the evaluating attorney’s party; eight percent said he ruled primarily against the party; and 11 percent did not have an applicable ruling in the cases before Judge Chamberlain.
In responding to the 19 questions about Judge Chamberlain, the lawyers surveyed provided high scores for maintaining a professional demeanor in the courtroom (4.76); being prepared for court (4.69); considering the amount of case law required to render a prompt decision (4.69); addressing individuals respectfully in the courtroom (4.69); and adhering to appropriate rules of procedure (4.65).
Judge Chamberlain’s lower scores were given for conducting the proceeding in a neutral manner (4.51); assisting the parties in narrowing key issues in dispute (4.44); carefully considering arguments from both sides before ruling (4.38); citing the applicable substantive law (4.29); and having a decision follow logically from the evidence presented (4.29).
The committee received survey responses from jurors who had participated in a jury trial before Judge Chamberlain. The Committee reviewed the answers given by the jurors and found that they provided positive responses to the 10 questions asked, with no negative responses.
The committee also received the results of a trial court staff survey in which six questions asked of lawyers in the lawyer’s survey were also asked of the trial court staff. Judge Chamberlain received responses from five trial court staff who answered questions in an overwhelmingly positive manner. The score on a 1 to 5 (with 1 meaning “strongly disagree” and 5 meaning “strongly agree”) scale of the ratings by trial court staff for Judge Chamberlain averaged 4.91.
The vommittee did not receive any written opinions from Judge Chamberlain for review. Judge Chamberlain provided information noting that his normal docket involving primarily family law disputes did not provide opportunities for the writing of opinions on a regular basis.
The committee observed Judge Chamberlain as he conducted public hearings. The observations of Judge Chamberlain by committee members were taken into account in making the recommendation set out below. The committee also met with Judge Chamberlain and had the opportunity to interview him on June 3, 2014. The comments made by the judge and the answers to questions posed to him by the committee were likewise taken into account in the recommendation set out below.