Chief Magistrate of Cobb County
Hon. Brendan F. Murphy
Judge Brendan F. Murphy was appointed Chief Magistrate of Cobb County by the Superior Court bench of the Cobb Judicial Circuit in July 2019 and elected to a full term in June 2020. As Chief Magistrate, he is responsible for all judicial and administrative functions of the Magistrate Court of Cobb County which operates 24 hours/day, 365 days/year with a staff of approximately 75 people, including 20 total judges. Judge Murphy is dedicated to ensuring access to justice at “The People’s Court.”
Judge Murphy began his legal career handling civil cases with the Marietta law firm now known as Gregory, Doyle, Calhoun & Rogers, LLC. There, he was an attorney in the Education Law Group where he counseled metro Atlanta school districts—including the Cobb County and Marietta City School Districts—on a wide variety of legal matters.
Committed to public service, Judge Murphy left his career in private practice to serve the people of Cobb County as a prosecutor. He first worked as an Assistant Solicitor-General in the Cobb Solicitor’s Office. There, in addition to full courtroom responsibilities, he also served as lead prosecutor for the Domestic Violence Court program.
Judge Murphy subsequently moved to the Cobb County District Attorney’s Office, serving as an Assistant District Attorney and later as a Senior Assistant District Attorney in the Trial Division. At the DA’s Office, he was a strong supporter of the Circuit’s successful accountability court programs.
Judge Murphy’s service extends beyond the bench. He was appointed to the Board of Commissioners of the Magistrates Retirement Fund in February 2021 and Chief Justice Harold D. Melton’s Judicial COVID-19 Task Force in May 2020. He also currently serves as Vice Chair of the Council of Magistrate Court Judges Legislative Committee.
Judge Murphy previously sat on the Board of Trustees of the Cobb County Bar Association where he served three terms as Parliamentarian. He has been a volunteer judge for the annual High School Mock Trial competition and was a Mentor for the State Bar of Georgia’s Transition Into Law Practice Program.
A proud “Double Dawg,” Judge Murphy is a two-time graduate of the University of Georgia. He received a Bachelor of Arts in History and Political Science, attending on the Foundation Fellowship—a full academic, merit scholarship. At the School of Law where he earned his Juris Doctor, Judge Murphy was elected President of the Student Bar Association.
Brendan is married to his wife Sarah, a board-certified clinical pharmacist. They are the proud parents of two busy children. The Murphys reside in East Cobb where they attend and volunteer at the Catholic Church of St. Ann.
Judge Michael E. McLaughlin
Judge Michael McLaughlin is the Dean of the Cobb County Magistrate Court bench. After first being appointed in 1985, he has served continuously with six different Chief Magistrates. Judge McLaughlin has heard every type of case filed in Magistrate Court and routinely handles the Court’s busy civil calendars.
In addition to his service on the bench, Judge McLaughlin ran a successful law firm for over 35 years. He has extensive experience in criminal law, and before taking the bench full-time, his practice most recently focused on family law and representing injured people. Judge McLaughlin is the co-author of Admissibility of Evidence in Civil Cases—a Manual for Georgia Trial Lawyers, which is updated and published annually. He has taught other judges through the Institute of Continuing Judicial Education and aspiring paralegals at Kennesaw State University.
Judge McLaughlin is a member of the Cobb County Bar Association and the Council of Magistrate Court Judges. He is a graduate of Florida State University and John Marshall Law School. He has resided in East Cobb with his wife Michelle for over 30 years. The McLaughlins have two adult children and attend Johnson Ferry Baptist Church and the Catholic Church of St. Ann.
Judge Jana J. Edmondson-Cooper
Judge Jana J. Edmondson-Cooper was appointed to the bench in 2022. A career public servant, immediately prior to her appointment Judge Edmondson-Cooper served as a Senior Trial Attorney (Bilingual) at the U.S. Department of Labor-Office of the Solicitor ("DOL") where she prosecuted complex labor and employment enforcement matters on behalf of the Secretary of Labor focusing on cases involving violations of the Fair Labor Standards Act, the “H” provisions of the Immigration and Nationality Act, the Occupational Safety and Health Act, the Mine Safety and Health Act, and other federal labor laws. Her practice also included defensive employment litigation . In 2021 she received the Secretary of Labor's Willard Wirtz Legacy Award, a national award which recognizes exceptional performance and accomplishments in public service that exemplifies accountability, responsibility, and emerging leadership skills that display the promise of future leadership in the spirit of former Secretary of Labor Willard Wirtz. Prior to her appointment to the DOL, Judge Edmondson-Cooper served as a Staff Attorney (Bilingual) at Georgia Legal Services Program ("GLSP") for nearly a decade representing indigent clients in rural Georgia, a significant number of whom were limited English proficient ("LEP"), in family law (often involving domestic violence), housing law, consumer law, education law, health law, wills and estates, and public benefits matters.
As a former legal interpreter, legal aid attorney, and federal prosecutor, Judge Edmondson-Cooper has spent a significant amount of time working to alleviate language access & other critical access to justice ("A2J") issues. With over a decade of A2J experience, she has worked with A2J stakeholders nationwide to improve access, promote equity, and preserve/ensure justice for all. Judge Edmondson-Cooper has led and contributed to the development of local, state, and federal A2J policies and the development of state and national curricula for training attorneys and judges on a variety of A2J issues. During her tenure at GLSP, Judge Edmondson-Cooper frequently provided trainings to law enforcement (POST-certified), school districts, the Prosecuting Attorneys' Council of Georgia, and other entities across the state on domestic violence and language access, including contributing as a subject-matter expert to the Georgia Domestic Violence Bench Book. In 2013, she co-founded Georgia's first comprehensive access to justice/language access-centered training - Eliminating Barriers to Justice - for lawyers, judges, court personnel, interpreters, and other access to justice stakeholders. Over the past decade, she has frequently served as faculty at several annual trainings sponsored by ICJE and the Councils of [Georgia] Superior, State, and Magistrate Judges. Additionally, appointed by the Supreme Court of Georgia, Judge Edmondson-Cooper is a member of the Judicial Council of Georgia's Standing Committee on Interpreters (fka Supreme Court Commission on Interpreters), where she led the development of the Court's Model Administrative Protocol for the Provision of Language Assistance to Limited English Proficient and the Deaf/Hard of Hearing Persons in Georgia Courts released in 2020. The first of its kind in Georgia, and widely believed to be the first of its kind in any non-unified court system in the nation, the MAP is a comprehensive guide which aids Georgia's courts in ensuring LEP persons and persons who are Deaf/Hard of Hearing have meaningful access to justice. She is also the author of several A2J publications including Georgia's first benchbook chapter dedicated to the provision of qualified interpreters in civil and criminal proceedings, subsequently adopted by Georgia's Magistrate, Superior, State, Municipal, and Probate Courts.
Judge Edmondson-Cooper's commitment to access, equity, and justice has been acknowledged statewide and nationally, including, recognition by the Fulton County Daily Report as a rising legal star to watch, recognition by former Gov. Nathan Deal and the Georgia Commission on Equal Opportunity, selection to the Fellows of the American Bar Foundation, and recognition by the National Bar Association and the American Bar Association as one of the nation’s top lawyers who exemplify a broad range of high achievement, innovation, vision, leadership, legal and community involvement. Judge Edmondson-Cooper is a member of several other legal and community organizations including the Judicial Council of Georgia A2J Committee where is serves on the Deaf/Hard of Hearing Subcommittee, the State Bar of Georgia A2J Committee, the Georgia Association of Black Women Attorneys ("GABWA") where she currently serves as President-Elect, and Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. A Long Island, NY-native with North Carolina roots, Judge Edmondson-Cooper made Georgia home in 2001 and has resided in Cobb with her family since 2015. She is an alumna of Spelman College and Mississippi College School of Law.
Judge Alyssa Blanchard
Judge Alyssa Blanchard is an attorney and partner at O’Dell, O’Neal, Hungerford, & Blanchard. She focuses her practice exclusively in the area of family law, representing clients throughout Metro-Atlanta.
Before attending law school, Judge Blanchard received a Bachelor of Arts in History with a minor in English from Georgia State University in 2010. She then went on to attend Florida Coastal School of Law. While she was in law school, Ms. Blanchard completed a summer clerkship at the Cobb County Superior Court for the Hon. Robert E. Flournoy III, and she served another summer clerkship with a well-known Atlanta law firm. Each of these positions provided her with invaluable experience. She subsequently was awarded her Juris Doctor in 2014.
After graduation, Judge Blanchard became an attorney at a Georgia family law firm for which she had previously worked first as a paralegal and then as a law clerk, before joining O’Dell & O’Neal Attorneys. Ms. Blanchard is admitted to practice law before the state and federal courts of Georgia.
Actively involved in her profession and her community, Judge Blanchard participates in several legal and civic organizations including the State Bar of Georgia and the Cobb County Bar Association. Judge Blanchard is a member of the Must Ministries Programs’ committee, the MUST Dance committee, the 2020 Cobb County Prayer Breakfast committee, the Board of the Marietta Area Council, the Board of the Georgia Metropolitan Dance Theatre, and the Kiwanis Club of Marietta.
Judge Murphy previously appointed Judge Blanchard to the Cobb County Board of Ethics where she served until stepping down to accept her judicial appointment. She has served as the chair of the Kiwanis Club of Marietta’s Club Satellite U40 and served on the Board of the Marietta Mentoring for Leadership. Judge Blanchard was also a member of the 2018 Center for Family Resources Thanks for Giving committee.
Judge Blanchard is a 2018 graduate of Leadership Cobb and a member of the Cobb Chamber Young Professionals Steering Committee. She was recently recognized in the January 2020 issue of the Cobb Life Magazine on The Cobb Life List of “20 under 40.” You can also find Judge Blanchard lending her voice to support the Strand Marietta’s Ole Opry. Judge Blanchard resides in Vinings.
Judge Rita M. Cherry
Judge Rita M. Cherry was reappointed to the Magistrate Court bench in 2020 after previously serving in 2015.
Judge Cherry received her Bachelor of Science degree in Business from Grambling State University and Juris Doctorate degree from John Marshall Law School. Her career began under the leadership and mentoring of the Hon. Leah Ward Sears, former Chief Justice of the Georgia Supreme Court, for whom she clerked as an Intern.
During her career, Judge Cherry formed her own law firm where she represented clients in Employment and Labor cases. She served as a defense attorney with the Cobb County Circuit Defender’s office, representing indigent defendants in criminal cases. Judge Cherry worked as an Assistant District Attorney with the Fulton County District Attorney’s Office and thereafter a Senior Assistant City Attorney for the City of Atlanta where she litigated civil cases and constitutional issues on behalf of municipal government and officials. Judge Cherry also taught law as an Adjunct Law Professor for Georgia Perimeter College.
Judge Cherry has been actively involved in organizations such as the American Bar Association, National Bar Association, National Employment Lawyers Association, Gate City Bar Association, Leadership Academy for Women of Color, the Language Institute of Atlanta, Smyrna Library Club and Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. She is actively involved with her Church and serves as a mentor for young lawyers. She is a resident of Smyrna.
Judge Charles Chesbro
Charles Chesbro has been a Magistrate Judge for Cobb County since April 1990. Judge Chesbro graduated from the University of Texas at El Paso, in 1984, and earned his Juris Doctor from Georgia State University of College of Law, cum laude, in 1987. He is admitted to practice law in Georgia, Colorado and the District of Columbia. Judge Chesbro maintains a mediation practice in Cobb County in the areas of general, commercial, family law, and civil litigation.
He has been a state certified mediator in the Superior Court since the program's inception in 1993. Judge Chesbro is co-founder of the Cobb Justice Foundation, an organization providing civil representation for low-income individuals in Cobb County. He is past Chair of the Georgia Magistrate Court Council Research Committee, updating Magistrate Judges statewide on cases and changes in the law.
Judge Chesbro is an active faculty member of the Institute for Continuing Judicial Education, having taught courses in evidence, ethics, contracts, trial, injury, foreclosure and updating civil case law. He is also an Adjunct Professor at Kennesaw State University, teaching legal research, mock trial, and constitutional law courses. He has also taught Magistrate Court seminars for the public on Small Claims Court and Bad Check Claims.
Judge Toqeer Chouhan
Judge Toqeer Chouhan is a native and lifelong resident of Georgia.
Mr. Chouhan earned his law degree from Mercer University Walter F. George School of Law and also has a Masters in Business Administration (MBA) from Kennesaw State University. Toqeer obtained his undergraduate degree in Business Administration with dual concentrations in Finance and Marketing from Berry College in Rome, GA.
He has been a member of the Georgia Bar since 2005 and is the managing partner of The Chouhan Law Firm, LLC in Cobb County. Through his private practice in Cobb County, Toqeer has extensive experience in business and corporate issues, as well general civil litigation, domestic relations, criminal, personal injury, and collections matters.
He is an active member of the Cobb County Bar Association. He is a resident of Smyrna.
Judge Louis Feingold
Louis Feingold was born in Camilla, GA. He received his undergraduate degree in Communications from the University of Georgia and his law degree from Georgia State University College of Law. Judge Feingold currently practices at a large national collections law firm located in Marietta. He is a member in good standing in the State Bar of Georgia and the Cobb County Bar Association.
He has been a member of the Georgia Trial Lawyers Association, Atlanta Bar Association and the Lawyers Club of Atlanta. Louis was involved for many years with Kids Chance, an organization which raises money for scholarships for the children of Georgia Workers who have been seriously injured in work related accidents. Judge Feingold and his wife, Susan, have three children and have resided in Cobb County for 17 years.
Judge Don Hicks
Donald Hicks has been a Magistrate Judge for Cobb County since 1987. Judge Hicks graduated from Emory University in 1974 and earned his law degree from Woodrow Wilson College of Law in 1980. He currently is practicing in the area of real estate foreclosure law at the firm of McCalla, Raymer, Padrick, Cobb, Nichols and Clark. Judge Hicks is a member of the Atlanta Track Club and USA Triathlon association. He is currently serves as a Trustee for the Atlanta Track Club Foundation.
Judge Jennifer M. Inmon
Jennifer Inmon received her B.A. in Business from Wittenberg University in 1992. She went on to receive her J.D. from Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee in 1995. Judge Inmon served as the law clerk for the Cobb County Magistrate Court and the Cobb County Drug Court from 1996 until 1999 when she was appointed Cobb County Magistrate Court Judge. She maintains a private law practice in Cobb County concentrating on corporate and business law.
Judge Inmon is currently a Seventh District Representative to the statewide Council of Magistrate Court Judges and frequently serves as a formal Mentor to new Magistrate Judges in Cobb County and beyond. She is also an active member of the Leadership Cobb Alumni Association and volunteers for the Cobb County Youth Diversion Program, the Consequences of Crime Education Program, and Cobb County Family Resources.
Judge Quinn M. Kasper
A Gwinnett County native, Quinn McGill Kasper earned her B.A. in 2007 from Auburn University and her J.D in 2010 from Thomas Goode Jones School of Law at Faulkner University in Montgomery, Alabama. She is admitted to practice in Georgia. After working as the Senior Attorney with a national creditor’s rights law firm in Marietta, she currently practices with a statewide probate law firm. Judge Kasper currently serves as the Vice President of the Council of Magistrate Court Judges.
Outside of practicing law, Judge Kasper is an active member of the Atlanta Chapter of the Gamma Phi Beta Alumni Association volunteering at various community events. Judge Kasper, her husband, Sean, and her stepson have resided in Cobb County since 2012.
Judge Janné Y. McKamey
Judge Janné McKamey provides insightful mediation and arbitration of complex commercial, domestic relations and consumer cases, formed by 30 years of litigation work in private practice and government service. She has extensive experience in legal compliance, contracts, ordinance issues, domestic relations, collections, and small business matters.
As a Magistrate in Cobb County, she is well versed in managing litigation in a fair, unbiased manner. In her private practice, Judge McKamey handled civil litigation matters including employment, domestic relations, business disputes, real estate, and mediation. She was previously a court appointed attorney for Gwinnett County Juvenile Court.
Prior positions include managing the Arbitration and Garnishment Departments and serving as managing attorney for the Marietta branch of Hollander Law offices, and longtime contract attorney for Gerald E. Moore & Associates, PC. She has also supported document review through eDiscovery platforms and worked as a contract attorney throughout metro Atlanta.
Judge McKamey received her juris doctorate from North Carolina Central University of Law, and she received a bachelor’s degree in political science from the University of Tennessee. Most recently, she received certification from the National Computer Forensics Institute in the field of Digital Evidence. Her mediation and arbitration practices encompass both Georgia and Tennessee.
Judge McKamey is a 30-year resident of Cobb County and very active in her community. She volunteers with The Catholic Church of St. Ann, the Cobb County Domestic Violence Taskforce, LiveSafe Resources, the Cobb County and Georgia Bar Associations, the North Atlanta Chapter of the University of Tennessee Alumni Association, Dragon Con and other local conventions, as well as offering pro bono and reduced fee legal work as a lifetime member of Cobb Justice.
Judge Amanda Perez
Judge Amanda Perez has been an attorney practicing in Georgia since 2009.
Judge Perez has handled domestic cases, civil litigation, immigration, and criminal defense—particularly specializing in matters where there can be some impact on immigration status. Her emphasis is on helping clients who are vulnerable navigate the legal system.
She has also served in several roles which are in frequent contact with the judicial system, such as probation officer, bail bondsman, process server, and real estate agent. In her private practice, Judge Perez also represented injured parties recovering unpaid labor, as well as negotiations for clients with their creditors.
Being a resident of Cobb County for more than 30 years, and a criminal justice graduate from Georgia State University, Judge Perez has had ties with Georgia nearly her entire life. She obtained her J.D. from John Marshall Law School. She is a member of AILA (American Immigration Lawyers Association). In her spare time, she is a dedicated softball mom and motivator to her future baseball slugger. She is a resident of East Cobb.
Judge Tabitha Ponder
Judge Tabitha Ponder earned a B.S. degree in Psychology from Albany State University in 1996 and a J.D. from Mercer University School of Law in 1999. She is the Founder and Managing Attorney of the Ponder Law Group, LLC and Ponder-Solomon Law Group, PC, where she practices throughout the State of Georgia.
Judge Ponder is recognized statewide for her expertise and commitment to improving access to justice. She currently serves as the contracted Staff Attorney for the Georgia Judicial Council’s Access to Justice Committee under the leadership of Justice Charlie Bethel, and Judge Ponder was recently appointed to staff the Judicial Council’s new Ad Hoc Committee on Improving Community Access to Legal Resources. She was appointed to serve as Special Master for Cobb County Superior Court in 2017. Judge Ponder also previously taught as an Adjunct Professor for seven years at Albany State University.
Judge Ponder is a member of the Georgia Bar Association and Georgia Association of Black Women Attorneys. She also serves as a Board Member of the Georgia Association of Women Lawyers as Vice President of the Leadership Academy. Judge Ponder’s service also extends to the Cobb County Bar Association, Gate City Bar Association, the Cobb County Branch NAACP, and Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. She resides in Marietta with her family.
Judge John J. Strauss
John J. Strauss was appointed as a Cobb County Magistrate Court Judge in 2005. He received a BMME Degree from the University of Miami (FL) in 1975 and earned his Juris Doctor from the Atlanta Law School in 1980. Since 1982, he has been engaged in private practice, and is currently practicing in the areas of personal injury, domestic relations, landlord-tenant, general business litigation, and some criminal matters.
He has been a resident of Cobb County since 1985. In 1990, he was a recipient of the S. Philip Heiner Award for pro bono indigent defense, awarded by the Atlanta Legal Aid Society. Judge Strauss is a professional trumpet player and a member of the Cobb Wind Symphony, a premier adult community band in Cobb County.
Judge Lee Tollison
Judge Lee Tollison is a Mississippi native who moved to Georgia to attend law school in 2008. Judge Tollison graduated from Mississippi State University in 2007 with a B.S. in Psychology. He went on to receive his J.D. from John Marshall Law School in Atlanta, Georgia, in 2011. Judge Tollison currently practices at a property law firm specializing in landlord-tenant law. He is a member in good standing with the State Bar of Georgia.
Judge Jonathan Marigliano
Jonathan Marigliano earned his law degree Emory School of Law in 1996. He received his undergraduate degree in finance in 1992 from the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania. Judge Marigliano began his legal career at Hall, Booth, Smith & Slover, PC in 1996 and was elected to the partnership in 2001. He co-founded the civil litigation firm of Slover, Prieto, Marigliano & Holbert, LLC in October, 2012.
Judge Marigliano represents injured parties, companies and individuals involved in business disputes and athletes, coaches and others involved in sports-related matters. He has lived in Atlanta since 1993 and Cobb County since 2009.
Outside of practicing law, Judge Marigliano has volunteered with the Atlanta Community Food Bank, the Emory Board of Visitors, and the Shepherd Center. He also assists the Georgia Athletic & Entertainment Commission as an event official and judge at state-sanctioned mixed martial arts and boxing events, making sure all combat sport promotions are in compliance with state rules and regulations. He has also served as a professional scout for the Oakland Raiders for sixteen years.
Judge Timothy W. Wolfe
Timothy W. Wolfe serves as a Senior Magistrate. He was first appointed a Cobb County Magistrate Judge in December of 2005. Judge Wolfe has also served as a municipal court judge of Dunwoody and an associate municipal court judge of Smyrna. Judge Wolfe worked as an attorney in private practice in both the civil and criminal fields. In addition to serving as a judge, he conducts mediations for civil matters. Judge Wolfe received his B.A. in political science from Emory University in 1975 and his J.D. from Emory Law School in 1978.