District 2, Position 1
Mississippi Court of Appeals Mississippi Court of Appeals Judge Deborah McDonald was elected Nov. 27, 2018, and began her judicial term on Jan. 7, 2019.
Judge McDonald began her legal career as an attorney representing the poor at the former Southwest Mississippi Legal Services in McComb. She worked for Legal Services for nine years, serving as staff attorney, managing attorney and executive director. She entered private law practice in 1991. Her private practice areas included civil rights, employment discrimination, consumer law, personal injury, product liability and family law. She did extensive work in voting rights litigation, including legislative redistricting.
She served as Fayette Municipal Judge for 23 years. She was attorney for Jefferson County Hospital and Jefferson County Nursing Home for 24 years. She was attorney for the city of Port Gibson for almost seven years, and represented the Hazlehurst School District for three years.
Judge McDonald grew up in Fayette and graduated from Jefferson County High School. She is a graduate of Alcorn State University, where she studied social science education. She earned her Juris Doctor from the University of Mississippi School of Law, where she served on the Moot Court Board. She is admitted to practice before all state and federal courts of Mississippi and the U.S. Supreme Court.
She has one adult son, Tahrik McClellan of Jackson. She is a member of East Mount Olive MB Church in Lorman.