Judge Virginia Carlton currently serves as Judge, Post 1, District 4, for the Mississippi Court of Appeals. Judge Carlton formerly held elected office as State Representative for House District 100 of the Mississippi House of Representatives from 2004-2006. She also holds the rank of Colonel in the US Army Reserves.
Education: Judge Carlton attended the University of Mississippi and received a BBA in 1986. She is an alumni of the Chi Omega Sorority, Jackson Chapter. She graduated from the University of Mississippi School of Law in 1989, where she participated in the moot court board (executive board member), and served as a member of the National Moot Court team, the Law Journal, and secretary of Phi Delta Phi legal fraternity. Upon graduation from law school, she served as a law clerk for Justice Joel Blass of the Mississippi Supreme Court from 1989-1990. She is also a graduate of the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College, and following her graduation, she served as an instructor for the course for two years. In 2009, she was board selected to attend the Army War College, a masterís level course, with anticipated graduation date of July, 2012.
Military: Judge Carlton served as a JAG officer in the Army for over 20 years with duty in the various components, active duty (over 8 years), US Army Reserves (9 years), and MS Army National Guard (approximately 3 years). In January, 2010, Judge Carlton served on the U.S. Army Court of Criminal Appeals as a mobilized member of the MS National Guard in support of the Global War on Terrorism. During this tour, she participated in approximately 40 appellate cases in three months at the Army appellate court, serving as lead judge in approximately 24 cases. In 2011, during temporary active military duty, Judge Carlton participated in over 20 appellate cases with the Army Court of Criminal Appeals and also presided over 2 Army courts-martial as an Army Reserve Trial Judge. She is now assigned to the USAR trial judiciary as a Reserve trial judge and presides as a military trial judge in courts-martial.
During her previous active duty service from 1990-1998, she served in a variety of positions including the following: Senior Defense Counsel, Fort Polk, Louisiana; Chief of legal Assistance, 25th Infantry Division (Light), Hawaii; Special Assistant U.S. Attorney, Hawaii; Chief, Administrative law, Hanau legal Center, V Corps, Germany; Chief of Claims, Hanau Legal Center, V Corps, Germany; Military Magistrate, Hanau Legal Center, V Corps, Germany.
In the US Army Reserves, she held the following positions: Chief of Justice, 377th TSC, New Orleans, Louisiana; U.S. Army Command and General Staff College Instructor, 11th Bn, 95th (Institutional Training) Division, Oklahoma City; Deputy SJA, 95th (Institutional Training) Division; Staff Judge Advocate, 3rd Personnel Command, Jackson, MS.
In the MS Army National Guard, she was assigned to the Office of the Staff Judge Advocate, Jt. Force Headquarters. She was certified as a military trial judge upon completion of the Military Judgeís Course at The Judge Advocate Generalís School in Charlottesville, Virginia, in May 2009, and she was certified and sworn as a military appellate judge in March, 2010.
Mississippi Court of Appeals: Judge Carlton currently serves as Judge, Post 1, District 4, on the Mississippi Court of Appeals reviewing appeals in both criminal and civil cases. She participates in over 500 cases a year at the Mississippi Court of Appeals and she authors approximately 60 opinions a year. The Mississippi Court of Appeals reviews trial court decisions in cases such as domestic relations, child custody, wills, real property, criminal convictions, contracts, insurance, medical malpractice, personal injury and property damage, workerís compensation and other administrative agency appeals.
After discharge from active duty, Judge Carlton served as a public defender and then as an Assistant District Attorney in the 15th Judicial District. She also worked with the SW MS Childrenís Advocacy Center as a staff attorney and instructor with certification by American Prosecutors Research Institute in the area of forensic interviews, protocols and child abuse investigation procedures. Judge Carlton was recognized during her tenure in the MS legislature by the MS Juvenile Justice Advisory Group as 1 of 3 Distinguished Legislators for 2005, and recognized by the Association of Adult Educators as South MS Friend of the Year in 2005. Judge Carlton served on the following legislative committees: Juvenile Justice, Judiciary B, Education, Colleges and Universities, Labor, and Marine Resources. Judge Carlton has also served as an adjunct professor at Mississippi School of Law and at Belhaven College in Jackson, Mississippi.
Military Awards: Judge Carltonís military awards and medals include the following: six Meritorious Service Medals; four Army Commendation Medals; the National Defense Service Medal; two Overseas Service Ribbons; the Army Service Ribbon; Army Reserve Componentís Achievement Medal (3rd award); Armed Forces Reserve Medal (with M device); and the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal. She also earned a foreign award, the German Military Sportsman Performance Badge (bronze) while serving on active duty overseas.
License/Associations: Judge Carlton is a member of the MS Bar Association and is admitted to practice in Mississippi, before the United States Supreme Court, the Army Court of Criminal Appeals, and the U.S. Court of Military Appeals for the Armed Forces. She is a member of the ABA, National Assoc. of Women Judges, the American Judges Assoc., and is a fellow of the ABA Assoc. Foundation. She served on the Study Committee Reviewing the Code of Judicial Conduct, on the Mississippi Commission on Childrenís Justice, and the study committee reviewing the stateís domestic violence laws.
Family: Judge Carlton is married to Dr. Scott Carlton, originally from Greenville, Mississippi. They have three children Rachel, Read, and Phoebe. Judge Carlton hails from the home town of Columbia, Mississippi. Her husband, Dr. Scott Carlton, is a family physician and has served the military for over 20 years. He previously served with the MS National Guard as an Army Special Forces Medic and then served on active duty as a family physician with the U.S. Army Medical Corps. Dr. Carlton currently holds the rank of LTC in the MS National Guard as a medical officer.