Judge Jacqueline M. Caldwell was elected to the Kentucky Court of Appeals, Division 1 of the 3rd Judicial District on November 5, 2019 to fill the unexpired term of Justice Debra Hembree Lambert, who was elected to the Kentucky Supreme Court in 2018.
The 3rd judicial district is composed of 27 counties in Central, South Central and Eastern Kentucky: Adair, Bell, Casey, Clay, Clinton, Cumberland, Estill, Garrard, Green, Jackson, Laurel, Lee, Leslie, Lincoln, Knox, Marion, McCreary, Metcalfe, Monroe, Nelson, Pulaski, Rockcastle, Russell, Taylor, Washington, Wayne, and Whitley.
In the sixteen years prior to her election to the Kentucky Court of Appeals, Judge Caldwell worked as a solo practitioner, with a focus on family law, and as a Guardian ad Litem for children in dependency, neglect and abuse cases as well as in high conflict divorce and custody proceedings. As a victim of domestic violence herself in her early marriage, and then as a single mother working full time and attending school, Judge Caldwell has had life experiences similar to many of her clients.
In addition to her primary practice as a Family Law attorney, Judge Caldwell also practiced in the areas of probate, wills and estates, personal injury torts, small business matters and as an appellate attorney. Prior to opening her own practice in 2003, Judge Caldwell worked for the law firm of O’Koone Hintermeister, PLLC, and her first position out of law school was as an Assistant Jefferson County Attorney, where she had also worked as a clerk during law school.
Judge Caldwell earned her juris doctor from the Brandeis School of Law at the University of Louisville where she attended on a full tuition scholarship. She earned her undergraduate degree from Campbellsville University where she graduated with honors.
Judge Caldwell is a native of Marion County and has been a resident of Nelson County since 2008. In addition to her legal career, Judge Caldwell, is a dedicated mother whose community service is reflective of that. She is a Girl Scout troop leader and member of the Cox’s Creek Elementary P.T.O. and former member of the advisory Board of Directors to St. Joseph Montessori Children’s Center at Nazareth, KY. Judge Caldwell is married to Aaron Thomas, is the proud mother of 2 daughters, Leona Thomas, age 7, and Heather Price, age 34 and is a member of the St. Gregory the Great Parish in Samuels, Nelson County, KY.