Heacock Withdraws From Judicial Chase

May 3, 2002
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GRAND RAPIDS — Although he filed his nominating petition by last week’s deadline, Kent County Commission Chairman Steven Heacock decided to withdraw his name from the race for the two new judicial seats in the 17th Circuit Court.

Heacock, who told the Business Journal a few weeks ago that he wasn’t certain he would run, confirmed that he was not a candidate last Thursday. Heacock said he spent a lot of time considering whether or not he should run for the bench.

“I still believe it’s the highest public service a lawyer can give the community, but I just don’t think it is the right place for me now,” said Heacock.

Heacock spent 13 years at Warner, Norcross & Judd as a partner and trial lawyer who specialized in business and health care law before joining Priority Health as general counsel and vice president of development in 1997. He recently left the managed care company.

Heacock represents the 5th District on the county commission, serves on the Convention and Arena Authority board, and is a certified public accountant. His withdrawal leaves 11 potential candidates to vie for the two new seats on the court (see story on page B6).

“There are a number of good people running, and it’s an incredibly valid service. It’s just not the right place for me right now,” he said. “I’m looking at many other career options now, and I couldn’t begin to tell you where I will land.”

Heacock will finish his third term as county chairman, which expires at the end of the year, and has said he hopes to continue on the CAA board if county commissioners want him to do so.       

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