James C. Egan

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James C. Egan
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Tangent, Oregon
CitizenshipUnited States Of America

James C. Egan is an Oregon state court appellate judge. He was elected by popular vote to the Oregon Court of Appeals[1]in 2012, and elected by his peers to serve as Chief Judge in 2017.

Early life, Family, and Military Career

Egan grew up primarily in Tangent, Oregon, a small farm community located in the Willamette Valley of Oregon.[2] After graduating from from West Albany High School in 1974,[1] Egan initially enrolled at Oregon State University, but later received his Bachelor of Science degree in political science and economics from Willamette University in 1979.[1]

Egan enlisted in 1978, and was commissioned in the U.S. Marine Corps in 1979.[2] From 1979 to 1982, Egan served as a logistics officer for Corrections Battallion, Camp Pendleton. He then attended law school, graduating from the University of Oregon School of Law with a doctorate of jurisprudence in 1985.[1] Egan served in the U.S. Marine Corps Reserves from 1983 through 1995.[2]

Egan is involved in the local community, having previously served on the Tangent Fire Board, Tangent City Planning Commission, and the Linn County Planning Commission.[1][2]

In 2005, Egan returned to active reserve status with the U.S. Army Reserves, and was deployed in Operation Iraqi Freedom to Kuwait in 2008[2] as the Deputy Command Judge Advocate for the Commander. All told, Egan spent 34 years in the armed forces before his retirement in 2014.[3] Jim and his wife Michelle together have eight children.[2] Two of those children are attorneys.[2]

Legal Career

Egan practiced law in primarily in Linn County, Oregon for over 25 years.[3] Early in his career, Egan became a shareholder at the law firm of Emmons, Kyle, Kropp, Kryger & Alexander (later Kryger, Alexander, Egan, Elmer & Carlson).[1] There, Egan specialized in personal injury, workers’ compensation law, and civil litigation,[1] representing injured workers and those facing job discrimination.

Before joining the Court of Appeals, Egan served as president of the Linn County Bar Association, Oregon Workers’ Compensation Lawyers, and the Oregon Trial Lawyers Association.[1] He volunteered on the Oregon State Bar Association’s House of Delegates, was a member of the Oregon State Bar Association’s Affirmative Action Committee, and served as treasurer of the Oregon State Bar Associations’ Workers’ Compensation section.[1]

Governor Ted Kulongoski appointed Egan to the Linn County Circuit Court in 2010, to fill the vacancy created by the retirement of Judge Rick McCormick.[4] He took office in May 2010, and ran unopposed in the November 2010 general election.[5] During his time as a circuit court judge, Egan oversaw murder cases, petty thefts, dissolutions, child custody battles, and other civil and criminal cases.[6] He served for 2 ½ years as a circuit court judge;[3] for a portion of that time, he also served as the chief judge for the Linn County juvenile and probate courts.[1] Meanwhile, Egan served as pro tem judge at the Court of Appeals and Oregon Supreme Court.[6]

On November 7, 2012, Egan was elected to the Oregon Court of Appeals, Position 6.[1][5] Position 6 was most recently vacated by Justice David Brewer of the Oregon Supreme Court. Egan moved from the Linn County Circuit Court to the Court of Appeals, taking office on January 7, 2013. Egan was appointed to the position of Chief Judge in 2017 by former Chief Justice of the Oregon Supreme Court Thomas Balmer, after being elected by the other judges on the Court of Appeals. He assumed the position in 2018.[2] Egan's immediate successors are Judge Erika Hadlock, and another former West Albany High School graduate, Judge Rick Haselton, who retired from the position of Chief Judge in 2015.


  1. 1.00 1.01 1.02 1.03 1.04 1.05 1.06 1.07 1.08 1.09 1.10 "Biography - Chief Judge James C. Egan". Judge Biography. Oregon Judicial Branch. Retrieved 27 February 2020.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 2.6 2.7 Paul, Alex. "Memorial Day services planned in mid-valley". Gazette-Times. Retrieved 26 February 2020.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 Paul, Alex. "Judge Egan reflects on life at the Oregon Court of Appeals". Democrat Herald. Democrat Herald. Retrieved 28 February 2020.
  4. "Governor appoints James Egan as Linn County judge". KVAL web archive. KVAL. Retrieved 27 February 2020.
  5. 5.0 5.1 "James C. Egan". Ballotpedia. Ballotpedia. Retrieved 27 February 2020.
  6. 6.0 6.1 "Oregon Court of Appeals Judge: James Egan wins". The Oregonian/OregonLive. The Oregonian/OregonLive. Retrieved 27 February 2020.

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