Charles Graddick

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Charles Allen Graddick Sr.
42nd Attorney General of Alabama
In office
GovernorFob James
Preceded byBill Baxley
Succeeded byDon Siegelman
District Attorney of Mobile County, Alabama
In office
Judge of the Alabama 13th Judicial Circuit Court
Assumed office
May 2004
Preceded byWilliam McDermott
Personal details
Born (1944-12-10) December 10, 1944 (age 74)
Mobile, Alabama
Political partyRepublican (1975)-turned-Democrat(1976)-turned-Republican (2011)
Spouse(s)Corinne Whiting Graddick
ChildrenCharles Allen Graddick, Jr.

Herndon Whiting Graddick

Corinne Graddick
Alma materUMS-Wright Preparatory School
University of Alabama
Cumberland School of Law
Military service
Branch/serviceAlabama National Guard
Years of service1969-1972

Charles Allen Graddick Sr. (born December 10, 1944 in Mobile), was the 42nd Attorney General of Alabama from 1979-1987. He later served as a Judge of the 13th Judicial Circuit Court of the U.S. state of Alabama.


Graddick graduated in 1963 from the all-male University Military School in Mobile. The institution was the forerunner of UMS-Wright Preparatory School. In 1967, he received his undergraduate degree from the University of Alabama at Tuscaloosa, where he was a member of Delta Kappa Epsilon fraternity. In 1970, Graddick obtained his Juris Doctor from the Cumberland School of Law in Birmingham, having been chosen the class president. In 1975, at the age of twenty-eight, he was elected District Attorney of Mobile County, He was elected Alabama's attorney general (1979-1987), After almost 20 years in the private practice of law, he was appointed as circuit judge in 2004 and was elected twice thereafter without opposition. He Served as Presiding Judge for 10 years.After retirement from the State Court Bench, Judge Graddick was appointed Senior Judicial Advisor to the Mayor of Mobile and Director of Courts. In 1966, Graddick married the former Corinne Whiting. The couple has three children, Charles Allen Jr., Herndon Whiting, and Corinne and six grandchildren.

1986 gubernatorial race[edit]

The 1986 Alabama Democratic primary for governor featured Attorney General Graddick in a heated runoff with then Lieutenant Governor Bill Baxley. Graddick won by a almost ten thousand votes,[1] but the state Democratic party ruled that he had violated a party rule by encouraging Republicans to vote in the Democratic primary. The court later instructed the Democratic Party either to hold another election or determine whether the crossover votes affected the outcome of the election. After a Party meeting the Party nominated Baxley.

Like Texas, Georgia, and Arkansas, Alabama does not register voters by party. At that time, the Democratic party had never enforced such a rule in any election because Alabama was a one-party state. Many Alabama voters opposed the democratic party hierarchy action and therefore voted in protest against Baxley and for H. Guy Hunt, the Republican nominee. Though he was previously considered a token candidate, Hunt won easily and became the first Alabama Republican governor since Reconstruction.[2]

Hunt's election surprised many, since no living person had witnessed a Republican winning the election for governor of Alabama. The media had paid little attention to the Republican gubernatorial primaries, fully expecting that the GOP nominee would be the next loser in the general election.

After the campaign for governor in 1986, Graddick established a statewide law practice. At the request of Governor Hunt in 1991 filled an unexpired one year term as district attorney for Montgomery County. He returned to private practice in 1992. Subsequently, Republican Governor Bob Riley appointed Graddick to fill the post left vacant when Judge William McDermott of the 13th Judicial Circuit Court died in office in May 2004. Graddick was elected in January 2005 to serve a six-year term in the same post. He was selected by his fellow circuit judges to serve as the presiding judge of the 13th Judicial Circuit until his retirement in 2017.

Graddick switches parties[edit]

In 2011, Graddick declared his candidacy for Chief Justice of the Alabama Supreme Court, in the Republican primary held on March 13, 2012.[3] Graddick opposed current chief justice, Charles "Chuck" Malone, and former Chief Justice Roy Moore. Both Graddick and Malone had lobbied Governor Robert J. Bentley for his appointment to replace then Chief Justice Sue Bell Cobb, who stepped down before her term expired.[4]

Roy Moore held the chief justiceship from 2001 to 2003, when he was removed from office over the Ten Commandments dispute which received national attention. In a bid to return to his former position, in spite of all the pre-election day polls showing Graddick leading, Moore won nearly 51 percent of the ballots in the 2012 primary, having defeated both Malone and Graddick. Moore faced the Democrat Harry Lyon in the general election scheduled for November 6, 2012, only to be kicked off the ballot by the Democratic Party to be replaced by their hand-picked nominee, Robert Vance.[5][6] Moore won the seat in the general election.


  1. ^ Graddick Wins Rowdy Alabama Runoff
  2. ^ Republicans Celebrate Gubernatorial Gains
  3. ^ Talbot, George (2011-07-28). "Charlie Graddick says he's 'running to win' in Supreme Court chief justice race". The Press-Register.
  4. ^ "Charlie Graddick says he's Alabama chief justice candidate". Associated Press via 2011-07-28.
  5. ^ Beyerle, Dana (14 March 2012). "Moore wins GOP nomination for chief justice". The Gadsden Times. Retrieved 14 March 2012.
  6. ^ Johnson, Bob (14 March 2012). "'Ten Commandments Judge' Wins Primary for Old Job". ABC News. Retrieved 14 March 2012.
Legal offices
Preceded by
Bill Baxley
Attorney General of Alabama
Succeeded by
Don Siegelman