Local attorney to preside as municipal court judge
LPR staff report
The Lockhart City Council has appointed an experienced local attorney to preside as judge at Lockhart Municipal Court.
Red Rock lawyer Darlon Sojak, whose work as a lawyer includes serving the public as a court-appointed defense attorney in Caldwell County and managing his own law firm for more than a decade, was appointed as presiding judge for the Lockhart Municipal Court at Tuesday night’s meeting of the Lockhart City Council.
Sojak’s law experience also includes working as a municipal court prosecutor for the City of Sundown, Texas.
“Judge Sojak was a clear and excellent choice for the position, given his work as a court-appointed attorney and as a municipal court prosecutor,” Mayor Lew White said. “He holds himself to the highest standard, and I have no doubt he will serve diligently to ensure fair and equal treatment of everyone who enters his courtroom.”
Sojak, who graduated in 1993 from The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley, taught ninth-grade English for five years before pivoting into law. He graduated from Texas Tech University School of Law in 2002.
“During my time in as a teacher in the Rio Grande Valley, I encountered many troubled youths and always tried to counsel them to make better choices and take accountability for their actions,” Sojak said. “Becoming an attorney allowed me the opportunity to advocate even more on the behalf of juveniles and others in the community.”
The teacher-turned-attorney made the move to Caldwell County with his wife and three children seven years ago. Sojak said he believed Caldwell County and Lockhart are truly blessed to have so many who are dedicated to the community, not only in the district attorney and judgeship positions, but also serving the Lockhart Police Department and Caldwell County Sheriff’s Office, as well as residents who live in the community.
“Upon finding there was an opening for the position of municipal judge, I felt eager to be part of such a great network,” Sojak said. “I feel that my prior experience as a high-school teacher and defense attorney will enable me to deal effectively and fairly with the issues that often appear in municipal court, such as truancy, contested situations and other disputes.”
Sojak will succeed Frank Coggins, who recently retired.
“I am looking forward to working with Judge Sojak as the court is a vital and independent part of the larger organization,” City Manager Steven Lewis said. “The court contributes to missions of the other city departments such as the code enforcement, police and planning departments as well as assure Lockhart’s quality of life.”