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TrailblazHers: Judge Martha Reeves Cook

Judge Martha Reeves Cook, District Judge – 10th Judicial Circuit

Judge Martha Reeves Cook became a District Court Judge in Jefferson County, Alabama, in March 2019, upon appointment to fill the remaining term of a retiring judge. She won her election in November 2020 and is now serving her first full 6-year term. Prior to her appointment, Judge Cook practiced civil law for over 20 years. A few years prior to her appointment, Judge Cook owned and managed, Martha Reeves Cook, LLC, a mediation firm where she mediated cases involving foreclosures and other real estate-related issues, divorce, and personal injuries.

 Judge Cook is an active member of the women’s sections of the Alabama State Bar and the Birmingham Bar Association. She is also a member of the Alabama Supreme Court Commission on Dispute Resolution, the administrative arm of the Alabama Center for Dispute Resolution. Judge Cook and her dear friend and colleague, Dean Cassandra Adams, speak often on topics of diversity, inclusion, intentionality, and conflict resolution.

A native of Selma, Alabama, and a graduate of Selma High School, Judge Cook received her Bachelor of Arts from Randolph-Macon Woman’s College in Lynchburg, VA. She obtained her J.D. from Cumberland School of Law in Birmingham. Her greatest accomplishment, however, is being a mom to her two grown sons.

Best Advice: Some of the best advice I received in my younger life, interestingly, came in the form of negative advice prior to my entering law school –“Don’t go to law school. You’ll regret it.” “Why do you want to go to law school?” This “advice” made me more determined to enter law school and become a successful lawyer, mediator, and now a sitting judge.

Greatest Influence On a personal level, my incredible parents, who have always supported and encouraged me and my siblings, and are thankfully still living and influencing me. On a professional level, the incredible lawyer, Augusta Dowd, of White Arnold & Dowd in Birmingham, has influenced my life by encouraging me to be the best mom I can be while also being a great lawyer. It is hard balancing both, especially when your children are younger and very involved in school, sports, and other activities. She provided a road map for me, and I am very grateful for her.

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