A third candidate announces bid for Georgia Supreme Court seat

Beth Beskin speaks to a crowd gathered during a Buckhead Council of Neighborhoods meeting at Peachtree Presbyterian Church in March 2019. (ALYSSA POINTER/ALYSSA.POINTER@AJC.COM)
Beth Beskin speaks to a crowd gathered during a Buckhead Council of Neighborhoods meeting at Peachtree Presbyterian Church in March 2019. (ALYSSA POINTER/ALYSSA.POINTER@AJC.COM)

Former state Republican lawmaker Beth Beskin is now the third candidate running for a seat on the state’s highest court.

Beskin announced on Thursday that she has entered the race for an upcoming vacancy on the Georgia Supreme Court. She joins former U.S. Rep. John Barrow and state Court of Appeals Judge Sara Doyle in a bid to sit on the court.

The nonpartisan race, to be held in May, will decide who replaces Justice Robert Benham, the high court’s first African-American jurist. He is retiring.

Justice Robert Benham listens to arguments before the Georgia Supreme Court in 2017. Benham, the state high court’s first African American jurist, is retiring. (DAVID BARNES / DAVID.BARNES@AJC.COM)
Justice Robert Benham listens to arguments before the Georgia Supreme Court in 2017. Benham, the state high court’s first African American jurist, is retiring. (DAVID BARNES / DAVID.BARNES@AJC.COM)

“I am running to bring my experience in business and law to the Supreme Court and to defend our shared values of what makes Georgia such a great place to live, work, own or run a business and raise a family,” Beskin said.

Beskin served two terms as state representative for House District 54 in Atlanta. During the 2017-18 legislative term, she was chief deputy whip for the party caucus.

In 2016, Beskin won 60 percent of the vote in her district. But she lost her re-election bid last year to state Rep. Betsy Holland, D-Atlanta.

Georgia Court of Appeals Judge Sara Doyle is running for a seat on the state's top court.
Georgia Court of Appeals Judge Sara Doyle is running for a seat on the state's top court.

Early this year, Gov. Brian Kemp appointed Beskin to the state's Judicial Nominating Commission, which screens and recommends judges for the governor to appoint when vacancies arise. She previously served on the Georgia Commission on Child Support.


              John Barrow  in Augusta, Ga., in November 2018. In April 2019, Barrow announced he’s running for a seat on the Georgia Supreme Court. (Michael Holahan/The Augusta Chronicle via AP)
John Barrow in Augusta, Ga., in November 2018. In April 2019, Barrow announced he’s running for a seat on the Georgia Supreme Court. (Michael Holahan/The Augusta Chronicle via AP)

Credit: Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Credit: Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

In 2011, then-Gov. Nathan Deal appointed Beskin as one of two liaisons to Atlanta Public Schools when it was put on probation. She served in that capacity until the system regained its full accreditation status.

More recently, Beskin worked in the state attorney general’s office, litigating cases of waste, fraud and abuse.