As a partner in the firm, Kristin represents clients in all aspects of family law, including divorce, child custody, child support, and equitable property distribution. She brings more than 23 years of courtroom and mediation experience to her practice, in particular to matters involving grandparent visitation and domestic violence, as well as family law disputes between same-sex couples. She is a certified mediator and certified financial mediator.
Prior to joining Smith Debnam, Kristin spent seven years in private practice before being elected to the 10th Judicial District Court bench in 1998, where she served as a district court judge in Wake County, Raleigh, North Carolina. As a family court judge, she concentrated the majority of her time presiding in the courtroom designated for the enforcement of child support. While in office, she earned re-election in 2002, 2006, and 2010, and was awarded the Commissioner’s Judge of the Year Award in 2004, presented by the Federal Office of Child Support Enforcement in Washington, DC.
Kristin is a frequent guest speaker at national and international events on issues covering child support and ethics. She is a former member of the Federal Child Support Task Force, National Council for Juvenile and Family Court Judges, and Chief Justices’ Commission on Professionalism, and has served as president of the North Carolina Child Support Council. Ruth currently serves on the board of Carolina Dispute Settlement Services, and is a member of the North Carolina Bar Association, Wake County Bar Association, and Tenth Judicial District Bar.