OKLAHOMA CITY – Governor Mary Fallin announced the appointment of Kory Slade Kirkland as district judge for Caddo and Grady counties. He is replacing Judge Richard G. VanDyck, who retired.
Kirkland’s appointment is effective immediately.
Kirkland, of Chickasha, has been in private practice since 2011 as a part of the Hays & Kirkland law firm. He also serves as municipal judge for the cities of Chickasha and Amber. Before that he worked as an assistant district attorney for Grady, Caddo, Stephens and Jefferson counties.
“Kory Kirkland is a skilled attorney who has experience in both criminal and civil litigation and from hearing cases from the bench as a municipal judge,” said Fallin. “Given his knowledge and experience, I know he will serve the residents of Caddo and Grady counties well.”
Kirkland also serves as an adjunct professor at the University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma. He teaches juvenile justice in the fall and criminal law in the spring. He also is a longtime volunteer on Grady County’s drug court team.
“As a prosecutor, I developed a thorough understanding of the rules of evidence and the criminal process,” Kirkland said. “However, I didn’t really understand criminal law until I established meaningful relationships with clients in private practice. As I listened to their stories and fought for their future, I began to understand the power of addiction and the path to recovery. It became clear to me that the criminal justice system must do more than just punish; it must rehabilitate because my clients, and people like them, are worth saving.”
Kirkland earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of Oklahoma and a juris doctorate from Oklahoma City University.
Kirkland has lived in Chickasha since 2009. He and his wife, Elizabeth, have a son, Kade.