If elected, Magic Valley lawyer and Idaho Supreme Court hopeful, Robyn Brody, will be the first woman elected to the state Supreme Court in 10 years.
Brody, an attorney in Twin Falls, Idaho, said she was drawn to the idea of running for the position in the Supreme Court because of the different perspective she has to offer, in part, from her experience practicing law every day.
“I call it ‘having the view from the trench, not the bench’ and just really being about the practical nuts and bolts of practicing law,” she said. “And I think it’s important that somebody on the Supreme Court have that practical perspective.”
Brody said she feels like her two decades of experience practicing law allow her to understand lawyers, and her small-town background gives her a unique way of seeing policies and procedures that do not always work the same in big cities as they do in small ones.
“From my perspective, the thing that makes me different from the other candidates is that connection to the people, being a people’s lawyer, being a lawyer’s lawyer,” she said.
In an Idaho State Bar survey of over 500 lawyers, Brody was given a 3.6 out of 4 by her peers for her understanding and knowledge of the law. She also received a 3.54 for legal ability and experience.
She said she feels that understanding the system from a practical perspective as well as her perspective from a rural community sets her apart from other Idaho Supreme Court hopefuls. She said that in district courts, judges make decisions “in the heat of battle,” but that Supreme Court decisions are different.
“It’s really looking at a much larger perspective,” Brody said. “Looking at the system as a whole, not only about what’s going to be just for this particular case, but what’s going to be just for our entire system, what does the rule of law need to look like for everyone?”
Brody said she normally does not worry about her gender, but instead focuses on her clients. Despite that, she said she recognizes that she has something to offer specifically because she is a woman.
“In my own practice, I’ve worked with men my entire career, and when we’ve been paired together, I know that I’m a better lawyer and that they’re a better lawyer, too,” Brody said. “We make better decisions and come up with better results when we work together.”
She said women call and tell her they selected her to be their lawyer because she is a woman.
Not all states choose their Supreme Court justices through the popular vote, but Idaho does, and Brody said she believes education is an important tool for each individual exercising that right.
Brody, the mother of two boys, said she and her husband depend on family and a network of friends to help their lives run smoothly as the two of them seek to balance their family and careers.
“We depend on other people every single day to help us get through life,” she said. “We couldn’t do it alone, that’s for darn sure.”
Brody said that back when she first entered law school, she had no concrete plans to practice law. But she said she found herself falling in love with law during her schooling.
“I mean it was research, writing, debating — all the things that really made my heart sing,” Brody said.
Brody said she knew she was where she belonged.
“I can’t save a life in maybe the same way that a doctor can, but the beauty of the law is, I can change a life,” she said.