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Calhoun County District Court elects first woman judge

Calhoun County District Court elects first woman judge. (WWMT/Matt Miller)

Michigan voters backed women at the polls on Tuesday electing them to several state offices, some for the first time.

Calhoun County judge-elect Tracie Tomak sealed her place in history as the first woman to win a seat on the in the 10th District Court.

"It still hasn't really dawned on me," Tomak said.

Tomak, 51, brings experience from family court and district court. She said it’s a leap forward for women.

"I cracked the ceiling there were many women that tried before me and that ceiling was only breakable because of those women," Tomak said.

Prosecutor Daniel Buscher, her opponent, conceded the race on election night before all the precincts were in.

Tomak said, "There are over 16,000 people that voted for my opponent and I want each of them to know that I serve them just as much as those who served for me."

The Battle Creek mother secured a six-year term as District Judge James Norlander and becomes the third female judge in Calhoun County. There are two women who are circuit court judges.

"I can't believe it, I am so humbled and honored by the faith that the people of Calhoun County have put into me and I will not let them down," Tomak said.

While Michigan overwhelmingly chose women for the state’s top offices, Tomak said her work has just begun.

“We will be expected to perform a little bit better than the men but that is just the way society is right now," Tomak said.

She said she is celebrating the historic firsts being felt across the state, but that she looks forward to a time when gender and race stereotypes are a things of the past.

Tomak said, "I cannot wait until that is not a topic anymore, my dream is the day we no longer keep track of men vs women or African American vs Asian Americans and Hispanic Americans. I cannot wait for the day we don't have to keep those tallies anymore."

Tomak will begin judge school in mid-November and her first day on the bench is slated for January 1.

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