Judge Latrice Westbrooks named Outstanding Alumna by Austin Peay State University

November 6, 2023

Mississippi Court of Appeals Judge Latrice A. Westbrooks of Lexington was recently honored by Austin Peay State University as one of its Outstanding Alumna.

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She was honored at the Distinguished Alumni Awards Lunch on Oct. 28 on the Clarksville, Tenn., campus.

Judge Westbrooks, who was born in Memphis, earned a Bachelor of Science degree from Austin Peay State University in 1994. She earned her Juris Doctor degree from the University of Detroit Mercy Law School.

In October 1997, shortly after graduating from law school, Judge Westbrooks became the first African American woman Assistant District Attorney in the Second Circuit Court District on the Mississippi Gulf Coast. She joined the Jackson law firm of Byrd and Associates in 2000, then opened her own law practice in 2001, representing clients in both criminal and civil matters. She served as prosecutor for the city of Durant and as city attorney for the town of Isola. For almost 10 years, she served as a public defender in Holmes County.

She hosted a radio program “Ask Latrice The Lawyer” on WMPR 90.1 from 2010 through 2012. She created and produced the show to inform the public about the criminal justice system and encourage civic engagement. In 2013, she became interim communications director for Jackson Mayor Chokwe Lumumba, then joined the Jackson City Attorney's Office as legal counsel for the Jackson Police Department. She returned to private law practice in 2014. She was appointed Municipal Judge for the city of Lexington in 2015 and served until she was elected to the Court of Appeals in November 2016. She took office on the Court of Appeals in January 2017.

She was named as Outstanding Woman Lawyer of 2017 by the Mississippi Women Lawyers’ Association. She was inducted as a Fellow of the Mississippi Bar Foundation in 2022.