Turner to succeed McGowan as county’s family court judge

Feb 14 Written by  MONTE DUTTON

Matthew P. Turner didn't always want to be a judge. Suffice it to say that it was on his mind.

"I started thinking about it and considering it years ago, but I wouldn't say, when I went to law school, it was my goal," he said.

Turner, a lifelong Laurens resident and partner in the firm of Turner & Burney, will soon give up his practice to take over from Joseph W. McGowan III as Family Court Judge for the Eighth Judicial Circuit.

The son of J. Michael Turner, Matthew began practicing law at the firm his father founded after graduating from the University of South Carolina School of Law in 2003. He graduated from Laurens District High School and earned a B.S. in business administration from USC in 2000.

Turner will likely be sworn in within the next two months.

"I look forward to the opportunity to serve my community and my state," he said. "It's another way to help people. I do it now as an advocate but will continue to use my knowledge and experience in a different way."

Turner sought the judgeship through a lengthy process prescribed by state law. When a seat comes open, applicants go through a screening process that culminates in election by the General Assembly.

Family Court, Turner said, is "personal."

"A lot of emotion is involved in it," he added. "It doesn't involve as much violating a law in the usual sense of a law, or injuries, or damages. It's about marriages, families and children."

Turner and wife Meg have 10-year-old twin boys.

He served as Attorney for the Laurens Commission of Public Works since 2013. Community activities have included chairing the Board of Directors of the Family YMCA of Greater Laurens and serving on the boards of the Joe R. Adair Outdoor Education Center and the Mental Health Association.

Turner was on the Board of Deacons of the First Baptist Church of Laurens from 2010 through 2012.

Last modified on Wednesday, 14 February 2018 21:57