Claremore Daily Progress

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December 1, 2010

Tulsa County ADA to join new DA’s staff

CLAREMORE — Newly elected District Attorney Janice Steidley will take office in January, and she will not start alone. Steidley has already selected the first members of her new team.

“I have hit the ground running,” said Steidley. “I am busy getting the team together.”

Steidley has named her new First Assistant District Attorney and made two new hires, one for Rogers County, one for Craig County.

First Assistant DA Ray Hasselman retired earlier this year, leaving a gap. Steidley said ADA Chuck Ramsey, who currently heads the Mayes County office, will be named as her first assistant. Ramsey will remain in Mayes County.

“Unlike the past where both the District Attorney and the First Assistant were in Rogers County, I feel it’s better to spread them out,” said Steidley. “I can manage this office. I’m going to be an active prosecutor. Chuck has been running Mayes County, and he will continue to do so.”

Rogers County is getting a new civil specialist.

Tulsa County Assistant District Attorney David Iski will leave his current position under District Attorney Tim Harris and come to work for Steidley at the 12th District which covers Rogers, Mayes, and Craig counties.

Because of its size, Tulsa County is a District all to itself.

Bryce Lair, an ADA in Delaware County will be heading the Craig County Office, said Steidley.

Lair had originally filed to run on the Republican ticket for the 12th District but pulled out of the race after Steidley won the primary.

“When I thought of running, I knew how neglected Craig County was. I immediately thought of Bryce Lair,” said Steidley. “Bryce and I are very much on the same page. I think he is going to be an absolute asset to have in Craig County. I know law enforcement is excited to have him there.”

Steidley said Lair lives in Craig County and cares deeply about the county and its people.

In Rogers County, Steidley said she is very proud to add Iski to the staff.

“He is a shining star that I feel I have been fortunate enough to get,” said Steidley.

Iski is one of 50 attorneys and 105 staff members in the Tulsa County DA’s Office. His specialty is civil litigation.

Born and raised in Pennsylvania, Iski came to Oklahoma in 1970 and stayed. He earned his undergraduate degree from the University of Tulsa. His law degree from the same university came, “much later in life,” said Iski.

“Going back later, you take a different approach to school,” said Iski. “It was harder, but I was only in my 30’s.”

At the time Iski returned to law school, he was a husband and father with a full time job.

“I started working with the Tulsa County Juvenile Bureau in the early 70’s,” said Iski. “That became my involvement with the court system.”

Iski worked in the juvenile system in the detention center and then as a counselor and in various roles. During that time he returned to law school, working a full time job during the day and attending law school at night.

Upon graduation, he first worked in the public defender’s office before going to work for the district attorney. His first position with the DA’s office was working felony prosecutions.

“I was a team member and then a team captain of a prosecution team,” said Iski. “Then I came to the civil division and had a wonderful world of government civil practice open up for me which has been personally and professionally a rewarding time for me.”

As Rogers County and the entire 12th District has grown, there has been an increasing number of civil cases. Last year, county commissioners asked for and subsidized a specially designated ADA who works strictly for Rogers County.

Iski said he does not know what his specific role will be at this time.

“I’m real excited about coming. I think Janice brings a new energy and excitement and a dedication to public service,” said Iski. “I’m very honored that she will allow me to play a role at this time.”

Iski said he is fortunate to have had the experience at Tulsa County to prepare him for whatever lies ahead.

“My time here in the Tulsa County District Attorney’s Office has been a wonderful experience for me,” said Iski. “I have grown to appreciate Tim Harris as a District Attorney and as a friend and just to be amazed at his abilities at times in running a very complex office.

“I hope with some of the things that I’ve learned working here, I can be a benefit to Rogers County. I am absolutely honored that Janice has given me an opportunity.”

Iski said he believes the coming years will be a time of new doors opening for Rogers County. 

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