CHARLESTON – On Nov. 3, Mingo County’s Chief Public Defender, Teresa McCune, received news that the Governor had appointed her to the state’s Indigent Defense Commission.
According to www.vocabulary.com, “an indigent person is extremely poor and lacks the basic resources of a normal life. Often the indigent lack not only money but homes. Indigent comes from a Latin word meaning wanting, which we used to use to mean “lacking” and not just to describe desires. Homeless shelters, soup kitchens, free medical clinics and court-appointed lawyers are all institutions that our society has developed to help indigent people.”
McCune took her oath of office on November 13, 2015. “I’m honored that the governor decided to appoint me. I believe his appointment shows commitment to providing quality legal services to indigent individuals in Southern West Virginia,” McCune said.
The Commission was established to provide assistance to West Virginia Public Defender Services with regard to the general policies and procedures of the agency.
The members of the Commission are appointed by the Governor and include one lawyer from each congressional district who has significant experience in the defense of criminal cases or has demonstrated a strong commitment to the quality of representation of indigent defense.
Ms. McCune was nominated for this position by Dana F. Eddy, director of West Virginia Public Defender Services. He said of McCune “throughout her legal career, Ms. McCune has been devoted to the representation of the disadvantaged. Her professional associations attest that she is committed to the betterment of the profession and her community. Her dedication to the research of issues involving criminal defense demonstrate that is she is not simply a criminal defense attorney – she is a criminal law scholar… Her nomination is earned as well as deserved.”
McCune’s term of appointment coincides with that of the Governor. McCune recently celebrated her twenty fifth year at the Mingo County Public Defender’s Office.
(Courtney Pigman is a news reporter for the Williamson Daily News. She can be contacted at [email protected], or at 304-235-4242 ext. 2279.)