June 27, 2023

Sara Collins, an Oregon litigator who practices in the areas of family law, juvenile dependency and criminal law, and who worked for 11 years as a public defender, will be appointed as a judge on the Jackson County Circuit Court.

Oregon Gov. Tina Kotek chose Collins for the court, according to a news release from Oregon.gov. The court is a general jurisdiction trial court in southern Oregon, in a county of 223,259 as of the 2020 census, according to online information.

Collins will fill a vacancy left by the retirement of Circuit Court Judge Joseph Charter, the release noted.

“Sara Collins is a talented lawyer with a passion for justice and public service,” Kotek said in a statement.

“In particular, Sara’s experience litigating juvenile cases with compassion and integrity will allow her to hit the ground running and serve her community well,” Kotek added.

Collins is currently in private practice at Collins Rowan, a two-attorney, full-service law firm based in Medford, Oregon, in Jackson County, according to law firm website information.

She grew up in Jackson County and attended South Medford High School, and in 1995, graduated from the University of Oregon, according to Oregon.gov news release and firm website information. In 2001, she earned her law degree from the University of Oregon School of Law.

Collins later had a judicial clerkship in Anchorage, Alaska, and eventually returned to Oregon and started practicing criminal law for the Lane County Public Defender’s Office, the firm website said.

Later she worked at the Oregon Department of Justice in Eugene, and while there she both represented the state Department of Human Services and worked on dependency law issues, the website said.

In 2010, she moved to southern Oregon, where she practiced criminal law for several years, the website added. She then practiced family and juvenile law at Hornecker Cowling, before co-founding the Collins Rowan firm, the website said.

After graduating from college, Collins taught English for a year to elementary-aged children in Costa Rica.