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City of Seattle

Municipal Court Judge Position No. 1

Cat McDowall

Cat McDowall

PO BOX 20776


Education: Juris Doctor, University of Virginia School of Law; Bachelor of Arts, Northwestern University.
Occupation: Seattle Municipal Court Judge

Legal/ Judicial Experience:  Seattle Municipal Court Judge (2020 – ); Judge Pro Tempore at Seattle Municipal Court since 2013, King County District Court since 2016; King County Senior Deputy Prosecuting Attorney prosecuting misdemeanor and felony crimes at all levels of Washington’s court system; litigation associate with Sonnenschein, Nath, & Rosenthal (now Dentons) litigating a broad range of civil cases. Rated “Exceptionally Well Qualified” by Washington Women Lawyers.

Community Service: Diversity Equity and Inclusion Committee at Our Lady of Fatima Parish School; Magnolia Moms; Magnolia Little League Board member (2013-2017); Little League International Softball Volunteer of the Year (2017). 


As an experienced civil and criminal attorney, Pro Tem Judge, Municipal Court Judge, and working mother of four, Cat McDowall carries the values of listening, compassion, and service with her to the bench. 

In her early career as a lawyer, Judge McDowall witnessed the inequitable norms embedded in our justice system, and gained a firsthand understanding of what it means to cultivate respect and sensitivity in the courtroom. In 2013, she was appointed Pro Tem Judge, and presided over varied cases with specificity and respect in several King County courts.

In 2020, Judge McDowall was appointed to the Seattle Municipal Court full time. As a Judge, she brings competence, enthusiasm, diligence, and an equity lens to considering all aspects of her work. She has worked closely with court staff, her colleagues and the court’s stakeholders to address systemic racism in the criminal justice system by promoting innovative and collaborative reforms. She is proud to have secured the endorsements of colleagues and elected officials including many current and former King County Municipal and Superior Court Judges. Judge McDowall is honored to serve her community on the bench and humbly asks for your vote to continue this important work. Contact:

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TTY: Relay 711

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