Since 1984, Judge Dan Slayton’s professional career in the justice system has given him an expansive view of juvenile, adult, and family issues impacting our communities and state.
As a juvenile corrections officer, he gained a great deal of insight into troubled youths, whose actions ultimately required detention in a state facility. Judge Slayton was also part of a new program that aimed to place certain juveniles into a work program with the assistance of the US National Forest Service and the National Park Service. Some of their work still stands to this day. For many of the juveniles, this program was their first experience with establishing a strong work ethic.
Much of what Judge Slayton learned about the needs of juveniles through this program has transferred to his understanding of criminal and family matters for adults. There are certain timeless values and habits that allow offenders and litigants better options for their lives, including work, continuing education, family and individual counseling, victim restitution and community service.
As an adult probation officer, Judge Slayton supervised a caseload of convicted sex offenders ranging in age from 18 to 65 for four of his five years. During this time, his knowledge of offender treatment, supervision, risk and recidivism, and family issues regarding reunification grew as he was recruited to train other probation department’s state wide.
Judge Slayton’s experiences also grew as a deputy county attorney. Through that position, he worked with rural community agencies to address issues regarding victims of abuse, including formulating a working protocol to reduce the number of interviews victims had to endure.
Beginning with Judge Slayton’s appointment as a full-time Justice of the Peace and part-time Superior Court Judge, he became acutely aware of the issues facing self-represented litigants.
It was during this time that he began writing scripts used to produce videos to citizens in understanding more about the law. The video project was ultimately awarded the Citizens’ Access to Justice Award in 2007. Judge Slayton regularly taught for the Administrative Office of Courts on small claims and landlord-tenant issues for limited jurisdiction judges, and also taught search warrant law for superior court judges at their new judge orientation classes.
As a full-time superior court judge, Judge Slayton has continued to honor an obligation to his community both on and off the bench.
His dedication to community service is predicated on a strong belief of repaying his community for benefits his family received over four generations.
Judge Slayton has served on the board of directors for a private non-profit charter high school; serves on several boards and advancement councils for Northern Arizona University; graduated and served on the board of directors for the Flagstaff Leadership Program; and participated for four years in the CASA Challenge program designed to prevent teenage drinking and driving, with a focus on prom and graduation time.
Judge Slayton has been asked to speak at local elementary schools to Northern Arizona University on legal topics.
He has also continued his professional legal associations to continue learning and improving his legal skills.
Judge Slayton’s past and present professional associations include the American Judicature Society, American Judges Association, Arizona Judges Association; and the Association of Family and Conciliation Courts. He assisted in the creation of “How to Represent Yourself in Court” monthly and bi-monthly seminars and routinely spoke at these seminars for nearly five years.
He continues to speak at both DUI impact and domestic violence impact panels. Judge Slayton has joined two other superior court judges as a panelist for a three-hour seminar sponsored by the National Business Institute entitled, “What Civil Court Judges Want Attorneys to Know.”