Legal Corner: Q & A with New League General Counsel, Christina Estes-Werther
Please join the League in welcoming our new general counsel Christina Estes-Werther! Christina started at the League on January 2. We had a chance to sit down with her and ask
her some questions.
Where were you born and where did you go to school?
I am a native of Arizona and was born in Tucson. I moved to the Phoenix area when I was in grade school and returned to Tucson to attend the University of Arizona where I earned
my bachelor's degree in family studies and human development. My husband and I moved to Phoenix briefly before heading to Spokane, Washington where I earned my Juris Doctor from
Gonzaga University School of Law in 2006.
What were some of your recent positions before joining the League?
Following law school, I began working at the Arizona State Senate as the judiciary committee analyst. My experience at the Senate helped me learn the nuances of the legislative
process and acquire knowledge about criminal law and election law, in addition to honing my public speaking skills.
In 2009, I joined the governor's office and served as the human services policy advisor for one year before accepting the deputy general counsel position. As deputy, I served as
in-house counsel to Governor Brewer and advised her on numerous subjects including state and federal contracts, elections, clemencies, charter amendments, bonds, land patents and
various legislative issues.
In 2013, I accepted a position as the State Election Director at the Secretary of State's Office. It was an exciting time since we were in the 2014 election cycle and there were
many interesting issues to address, especially relating to campaign finance. I gained invaluable experience on the day-to-day operations of statewide elections including legislative
and statewide office candidate filings, court challenges, lobbying and campaign finance regulation, publishing of the publicity pamphlet, logic and accuracy testing around the state,
and voter registration and outreach. I also expanded my presentation and training skills through the Certified Election Officer Trainings, meetings with the counties, ballot measure
town halls, and the Elections CLE presentation for the State Bar of Arizona. It was a great experience and I appreciated the opportunity to work with the elections division staff
and the county election officials throughout the state.
What do you see as the primary duties of the General Counsel for the League?
As in-house counsel to the League, I provide legal advice to the Executive Director and the Executive Committee to further support the League's mission to provide professional and
high quality assistance to local governments. While not comprehensive, my duties include contractual review, drafting amicus briefs, analyzing legislation and responding to inquiries
from cities and towns. I look forward to partnering with municipal attorneys and learning from their expertise and I hope to be a resource by researching particular areas that might
be impacted by legislation or court decisions, answering general inquiries on various issues and assisting with trainings and conferences. I enjoy being part of a team and doing my
part to help the organization be successful.
Do you have any other thoughts that you would like to share?
I am grateful for the opportunity to work at the League and I am confident that I can utilize my background and legal experience to support the League and its member cities and
towns. I am happy to be here and look forward to meeting and working with everyone.
League of Arizona Cities and Towns
1820 W. Washington St.
Phoenix, AZ 85007