Name: Kayley Taber
Office you are running for: District 18- District Attorney Orange and Chatham Counties
Current Home Address: Pittsboro, NC 27312
Campaign Address: P.O. Box 1724 Pittsboro NC 27312
Home telephone: None
Work Telephone: 919 545 3608 Campaign: 919 356 7579
Best daytime number: 919 545 3608
Personal e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Campaign Email: email@example.com Work: Kayley.firstname.lastname@example.org
Date/place of birth: 1967, West Virginia, USA
Current occupation: Managing Assistant District Attorney for Chatham County.
Family (names & ages, as of Election Day, of immediate family members): Jeffrey Taber, 55
Party affiliation (if applicable): Democrat
Campaign treasurer (if applicable): Jeremy Browner
Why are you seeking this office?: To bring transformative change in how we handle criminal prosecutions; focusing on a path forward for each person that is both restorative and just. To serve as an inspiration for young girls and boys so they understand that women can and should fill important leadership roles. I believe that diverse voices and experiences lead to better outcomes for all who intersect with the criminal justice system.
What is your understanding of the responsibilities of the office you seek, and in 100 words or less, why do you believe you’re qualified to fill that role?: The North Carolina Constitution states the elected District Attorney shall prosecute all criminal matters on behalf of the state and advise the officers of justice in her district. The District Attorney shall ensure the fair and equitable enforcement of those laws. She will effectively manage the staff and attorneys and develop a team of diverse public servants dedicated to improving outcomes and ensure fairness and equity. I am the most experienced and best prepared candidate for this important leadership position. I have the compassion, dedication to innovation, and commitment to the community that this position demands. I am a certified Criminal Law Specialist with 25 years as a licensed attorney. I have served as a prosecutor for 23 years, 15 of those as a manager of staff and attorneys. I have a proven history of advocating for the mentally ill and addicted and working to protect the most vulnerable from harm. I reflect our community ideals of fairness, equity and compassion.
Give us three goals that are specific, measurable, and attainable you would have if elected:
1. Improve access to courts for victims and court participants though the use of remote appearance technology to improve access and transparency
2. Adopt the science on Adverse Childhood Experiences to develop treatment plans and interventions to reduce court involvement and to assist victims in the healing process.
3. Improve diversity in staff and attorneys and hire bilingual staff.
What are the biggest challenges in Chatham and North Carolina right now and how would you address them?: The continued loss of life due to drug overdoses and the lack of medical/ mental health care for the mentally ill, addicted and uninsured. I will create a taskforce to gather data to determine patterns of overdoses. We can then use that data to create targeted intervention and prevention plans. I will advocate for expansion of Medicaid and the expansion of County resources for treatment.
Keeping up with the expected growth of Chatham County by having the staff and resources to continue to provide great community service. Dealing with the courts backlog of cases created by the COVID-19 pandemic. I will prioritize the most serious cases and work with elected officials to advocate for additional staff and attorneys to manage the backlog and the expected growth in Chatham.
Lack of integrated resources for victims of domestic violence and sexual assault in Chatham County .I have provided services to victims of sexual assault and domestic violence for over 23 years. I know the challenges of these cases and that it takes a community of helpers to both achieve justice and provide trauma support for survivors. Chatham County victim services, Second Bloom and other non-profit community partners have been working diligently to establish a support network for survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault. But there is more to be done.
We need to re-establish an integrated response to community violence. I will work with our partners to establish the ability to apply for and receive Protective Orders by use of remote technology. Remote access to hearings for protective orders is available in Orange County but not in Chatham. Those in need of protection must have the ability to petition the Court for help without further endangering themselves or their families.
We must work together to support survivors of sexual violence so that they can have the ability to seek and receive justice in the courts. Currently survivors who need medical assistance after a sexual assault must travel to UNC-CH Hospitals for treatment and to complete a Sexual Assault Evidence Collection kit. We need to explore local options for victims. I will work with local government and our medical providers to support their ability to recruit and train Sexual Assault Nurse Examiners. I have seen first-hand the secondary trauma inflicted on survivors when they must wait more than 7 hours for medical assistance after a sexual assault.
What’s your overall view of the role of government? Is it fulfilling its mission at present? If not, what needs to change?: Government is meant to work cooperatively with community stake holders to both support and help improve the lives of its citizens. We can do better. Mental health and substance abuse treatment should be funded and supported just as physical health. Most of the criminal activity in the county is fueled or made worse by substance abuse and addiction. We need to work together to come up with concrete steps to help those suffering and give them a path out of criminal involvement.
What differentiates you from the other candidate, and ultimately, why should voters choose you?: I have 25 years of experience as an attorney and am a NC Board Certified Criminal Law Specialist. I have over 15 years of management experience in the District Attorney’s Office and have handled serious felony cases and established a network of community support in both Orange and Chatham County. I am a resident of Chatham County and have undergraduate and law degrees from UNC-Chapel Hill. I have specialized training and experience as a special victim’s prosecutor which gives me a deep knowledge and understanding of trauma and its effects physical and mental health. I am the daughter of a veteran, and the wife of a veteran. Voters should choose me so that they will be assured that they have a District Attorney with the proven skills, compassion and leadership to make our justice system reflect our community ideals. My staff and attorneys will work as one to ensure fairness and equity without sacrificing community safety and victim support.
Political/government hero: Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg
Favorite book: The Good Earth
Book most recently read: Punishment Without Trial: Why Plea Bargaining is a bad deal
Favorite film: Oh Brother, Where Art Thou?
Hobbies: Cooking, Gardening, Motorcycle Riding
Church/civic involvement: Chatham Animal Rescue and Education-Foster Dogs
Personal motto or one-line philosophy: To whom much is given, much will be required
Strongest childhood ambition: A career in public service
Most significant life goal you’ve accomplished: Met and married the love of my life, and partner in all things Jeffrey Taber at age 20. We are enjoying our 34th Anniversary in 2022.
Goal you haven’t accomplished yet: Become the first woman District Attorney for Orange & Chatham Counties.
No comments on this item Please log in to comment by clicking here