Curtis named Alpena district judge
ALPENA — Alan Curtis will serve as Alpena’s newest judge, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer announced Friday.
Curtis, an Alpena defense attorney, will replace Thomas LaCross, who announced his impending retirement in July, effective at the end of this month.
Curtis will serve as Alpena’s probate and 88th District Court judge for a partial term, through the end of 2022. If he wishes to serve the remainder of LaCross’s term, through the end of 2024, he will have to run for election in November 2022.
A spokesman for Whitmer would not say how many people applied for the position.
Whitmer called Curtis on Thursday morning to inform him of his selection for the position.
The 1998 Alpena High School alumnus worked as an archaeologist for the U.S. Forest Service and a firefighter based in Colorado before attending law school.
That early work shaped the understanding of public service he hopes to bring to the bench, Curtis said.
Before joining the White Wojda and Curtis Law Firm in 2017, Curtis practiced law in Denver, including as deputy district attorney.
Experience fighting on both sides of a court case will help him as judge as he listens to attorneys, ready to change his mind based on what he hears in court, Curtis said.
The move from defense attorney to the public servant position of a judge will, Curtis hopes, give him opportunity to serve his community in new ways and help it combat the mental and physical challenges that land many people in a courtroom, he said.
“It’s going to be sad to not have clients and lose those relationships,” Curtis said. “But, I’m hoping that, by serving in this capacity, I can better help the community at large.”
Curtis will be sworn in next month.