Christian County's State Senator Whitney Westerfield announced Friday he will run for the District 1 seat on the Supreme Court of Kentucky. The district covers the most western part of the state and runs as far east as Allen County.
Currently, Justice David Buckingham resides in the District 1 seat. Buckingham was appointed March 27 by Gov. Matt Bevin to fill the seat after Justice Bill Cunningham retired.
"The Supreme Court of Kentucky is the court of last resort for our Commonwealth," Westerfield said in his announcement.
"We cannot afford to let passion or prejudice cloud our judgment at that level."
Westerfield was elected in 2012 to the state senate and has served as the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee since he took office. Westerfield sponsored Senate Bill 200 in 2014 which "brought about the largest reform to Kentucky's juvenile justice system in 30 years," according to a press release received by the New Era.
Most recently, Westerfield was in the running for the republican nomination for the state's attorney general. At the time, he cited the immense need for volunteers and time away from his family as reasons to abandon the campaign.
Westerfield dropped out of the attorney general race the same day Will Schroder entered. Schroder was defeated in the May republican primary by Daniel Cameron.
Westerfield was an assistant commonwealth's attorney in Christian County before running for office. He has experience prosecuting criminals and working with law enforcement in the western part of the state, according to the press release. He also ran a private practice where he worked in civil court.
"We trust the supreme court to uphold and defend the rule of law and that is precisely what I commit to do as Kentucky's next 1st District justice," he said.
The Kentucky Supreme Court elections are nonpartisan and will be held Nov. 5.