On Dec. 14, 2005 Spirro Damis will preside over his final docket as judge of the Steilacoom Municipal Court. Damis, who has served as the town’s municipal judge for “26 years and 10 months,” completes his service as municipal court judge on Dec. 31.
At the Dec. 6, Town Council meeting, Steilacoom Mayor Ron Lucas honored the judge, highlighting Damis’ extensive legal career that has included service as a county prosecutor, private practitioner and judge.
“He will be hard to replace,” said Mayor Lucas, reading a Proclamation in recognition of that service. Mayor Lucas said that the Judge always managed his courtroom in an efficient and professional manner to encourage and facilitate the pursuit of justice.
Mayor Lucas said that Judge Damis’ patience, moderation and good humor would serve as the standard to be met by future judges serving in the Steilacoom Municipal Court.
Comments by Town Attorney Larry Hoffman echoed the mayor’s words. Judge Damis always operated with a “highly refined system of fair play,” Hoffman added.
Judge Damis began his municipal court service in Pierce County 37 years earlier, when he “agreed to spend an afternoon presiding in the Eatonville Municipal Court for the princely sum of $25.”
During his judicial career, Judge Damis has served as the municipal court judge for Milton, Steilacoom and DuPont. He also has served as Judge Pro Tem in all of the other municipal courts in Pierce County, as well as in the Pierce County District Court. He’s also been a Court Commissioner Pro Tem and Judge Pro Tem in the Pierce County Superior Court.
Judge Damis began serving in Steilacoom in March 1978. During that time there was significant population growth, rapid technological change and continual legislative change.
Standing in the room that had served as his courtroom during those years, Judge Damis said that the Steilacoom Town Hall “is the most beautiful courtroom in the county.”
Note: Walls of that council chamber are hung with reproductions of historical photos from the town’s early years. A photo of the original Pierce County Courthouse, which was located on Martin Street, is on display.
Submitted by Nancy Covert