July 15, 2020
Judge John Napper Appointed Presiding Judge for Yavapai County
PHOENIX – The Arizona Supreme Court has appointed the Honorable John Napper to the post of Presiding Judge for the Superior Court in Yavapai County, effective August 1, 2020. Judge Napper was appointed to the Yavapai County Superior Court in 2017 and was appointed Associate Presiding Judge by Chief Justice Brutinel in November of 2019. His new appointment will follow the July 31, 2020 retirement of current Presiding Judge David Mackey and will continue through July 31, 2023. Judge Mackey was first appointed to the bench in December 2001 and has been the county presiding judge since January 2011.
In announcing Judge Napper’s appointment, Chief Justice Robert Brutinel stated, “I first want to thank Judge David Mackey for his work to manage and improve our court system, both during his time as a judge and as Yavapai County’s Presiding Judge.
John Napper is a smart and effective lawyer and he established an outstanding reputation as an administrator while he was Yavapai County’s Public Defender. As Public Defender, a judge pro tem, and as an elected Superior Court Judge, he has demonstrated the ability to work with all stakeholders to resolve problems and to improve Arizona’s justice system. I look forward to working with him as Presiding Judge.”
In accepting the appointment, Judge Napper said, “I want to thank Chief Justice Brutinel and the other Justices of the Arizona Supreme Court for selecting me as the next Presiding Judge for Yavapai County. I am deeply honored by my appointment. I look forward to this new challenge and am excited to get to work.”
Presiding Judges in Arizona serve as the chief executive officer of the county courts, having administrative authority over the courts, judicial officers, and court employees in their county. The Presiding Judge oversees case assignments, court calendars, financial management, and helps set the court’s strategic agenda. They also monitor the performance of the courts to ensure that cases are processed timely. Judge Napper will receive no additional compensation for his duties and responsibilities as Presiding Judge.
Before joining the Superior Court, Judge Napper was the Yavapai County Public Defender from May of 2014 through December 2016, where he directed an office of 17 attorneys, 15 staff, and approximately 20 contract lawyers. Before serving as the Public Defender, Judge Napper was in private practice, handling civil, criminal, and appellate cases. He graduated with honors from the John Marshall Law School in Chicago, Illinois.
To learn more about Yavapai County’s courts, visit https://courts.yavapai.us/. To learn more about Arizona’s judicial branch, visit www.azcourts.gov.
Follow us on Twitter: @AZCourts and on Facebook @ArizonaSupremeCourt