Vote to Retain Montana Justice Jim Shea
After being appointed to serve as a Supreme Court Justice by Governor Bullock, Justice Shea was confirmed by the Montana State Senate with broad bipartisan support.
Prior to his service on Montana’s Supreme Court, Jim served as the presiding judge of the Montana Workers’ Compensation Court, appointed in 2005 by Governor Brian Schweitzer. Governor Schweitzer reappointed Jim to a second term as Workers’ Compensation Judge in 2011 and Jim’s reappointment was unanimously confirmed by the Republican controlled senate.
During his decade of judicial service, Jim has earned a reputation with attorneys on all sides as a fair and thoughtful judge who “calls them like he sees them” and decides cases based solely on the facts and the law. This has earned him the support of Montanans from across the State, including representatives from Business and Labor, Democrats and Republicans, Law Enforcement, and attorneys who represent everyone from the largest corporations to individual Montanans from all walks of life.
Jim Shea is a fourth generation Montanan who grew up in Butte in the home that his great-grandfather built. After graduating from Central Catholic High School, he attended the University of Montana and helped put himself through college by tending bar on weekends and working summers in Butte for Metro Sewer. After receiving his bachelor’s degree from the University of Montana in 1988, Jim earned his law degree from the University of Montana School of Law in 1991.
After law school, Jim served as a law clerk to United States District Judge Paul Hatfield in Great Falls. Jim and his wife Kathy then moved to Portland, Oregon so Kathy could attend graduate school. While in Portland, Jim practiced both criminal and civil law. After moving back home to Montana, he continued his civil law practice until his appointment to the bench.
Jim and his wife Kathy were married in 1989 in the same church where they first met as juniors in college. They have two wonderful daughters: Kate and Mo, both college students. When away from work, Jim enjoys hunting, fly fishing, running marathons, and family hikes and camping trips in Glacier National Park.